Who takes care of basic public goods in order to be the city life tolerable and safe? With David Booth, Director Africa Power and Politics Programme, Overseas Development Institute
In order for city life to be tolerable and safe, especially for the urban poor, a number of regulation and service activities need to be undertaken by someone, and tend to be undertaken by no one – with the rich paying for their own arrangements privately. In Europe, we tend to assume that democratic city government will take care of this, but there are many reasons for supposing that the immediate problems of African cities are unlikely to be solved by that route. So what is to be done?