Somalia Urbanization Review: Fostering Cities as Anchors of Development

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The Somalia Urbanization Review aims to improve our understanding of the complex issues pertaining to urbanization in Somalia and identifies priority interventions that can help better manage it. There is wide consensus within the government as well as among development partners on the critical importance of urbanization for Somalia’s development. Yet there has been little comprehensive analysis that serves as a basis for a coherent urban development strategy. Previous studies have often focused on specific topics or geographic areas. Studies have also been either technical or political, but each on its own falls short of providing a full picture of the issues at hand. The Urbanization Review draws on both technical and political economy analyses to provide a better understanding of a broader range of urban issues in Somalia, and craft recommendations that are better tailored to the local contexts. The report aims to facilitate a more informed dialogue between the government, private sector, civil society, development partners, and other stakeholders on a more comprehensive urban development strategy in Somalia. This report is divided into five chapters. The first chapter looks at how cities evolved over time in Somalia. The study then discusses the key drivers of the urban migration that contributes to urbanization in second chapter. The third chapter looks at the growth patterns of cities and puts forward a typology of cities, highlighting the heterogeneity of the Somali urban context. The fourth chapter takes an in-depth look at the four sectors that are essential for a city to fulfill its core functions of governing space, people, and resources in urban governance, services, land, and local economic development. The last chapter puts forward policy recommendations on how to leverage the existing hybrid governance and non-state-led service delivery systems and improve them to make Somali cities more effective at generating economic development, better able to deliver key services to the citizenry, and more inclusive and equitable for all.
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World Bank. 2021. Somalia Urbanization Review: Fostering Cities as Anchors of Development. © World Bank, Washington, DC. License: CC BY 3.0 IGO.
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