Clare Short Reflects on the Role of PPPs in Urbanisation

In an interview with Handshake, Clare Short discusses the impact of the development community's rural focus on urban poverty alleviation

In its most recent edition Handshake, a quarterly journal on Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) published by the International Finance Corporation (IFC) of the World Bank Group, focuses on cities. The online journal carries plenty of interesting articles and interviews on PPPs in housing, transportation and service delivery that prioritise the needs of city residents.

It also includes an interview with Clare Short, the former UK Secretary of State for International Development and leading advocate for pro-poor urbanisation. Short discusses how the current development model focuses on rural poverty at the cost of the urban poor and until that changes, Short feels that the role of PPPs in urbanisation will also be limited. She says, “If everyone could just catch up, the beauty of the possibility is that as people concentrate in urban areas, all sorts of connections can be made that lead to greater efficiency.”

In the interview titled Managing Urbanization, Short discusses how history can provide valuable lessons to governments in dealing with the rapid urbanisation taking place in cities today. Short also highlights the efforts of the Cities Alliance’s member Slum Dwellers International (SDI) to build partnerships between slum dwellers and local governments. “Everyone claims to support democracy, and the practice of engaging people in the development process of their country is real democracy,” she concludes.

Short blogs regularly on urban issues and you can visit her personal website here.