Urban Governance Dynamics and Climate Change in East Africa: A Comparison of Dar es Salaam and Nairobi

This essay appears in Vol. 74, No. 1, "Global Urbanization: Nations, Cities, and Communities in Transformation" (Fall/Winter 2021).

By Garth Myers

Sub-Saharan Africa is home to three intertwined urbanization dynamics. First, it is the least urbanized but most rapidly urbanizing region in the world. Second, its cities often score poorly on indexes of global or world cities, yet economic and cultural globalization have defined urban forms and functions here as much or more than in any other global region. Third, its urban areas contribute the least to causing global climate change among cities of any region, yet its cities face severe negative impacts. This paper investigates urban governance in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania and Nairobi, Kenya in the context of these broader dynamics. These cities make a fascinating contrast in contemporary urban planning and climate change in Africa. This essay argues for the importance of understanding the archaeology (figuratively) of the state over the last half century in order to explain the contrast, and extends this archaeology to an insistence on appreciating the particularities of place for analysis of urbanization in Africa.


Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) ranks among the world’s least urbanized regions. As of 2019, the World Bank estimated that 41 percent of SSA’s population was urban, the second-lowest regional designation in the world. East Africa is the least urbanized sub-region of SSA (Table 1). At the same time, SSA is the most rapidly urbanizing world region, with urban population growth estimated at 4 percent annually. East Africa is at the forefront of this trend: for example, Tanzania’s urban population is growing at nearly three times the world average (Table 1). While the region’s cities rank low on scholarly indexes of globalization (Table 2), the insidious creep of global influences and globalization are palpable to any urban observer. In Dar es Salaam and Nairobi, shopping malls, foreign-owned luxury apartment towers and regional headquarters for international organizations or transnational firms abound. Contemporaneously, East Africa contributes only marginally to the production of greenhouse gases responsible for global climate change, yet models of global climate change impacts place the region at high or extreme risk (Table 1).

African urban studies has long faced challenges of lumping disparate narratives of urbanization across the continent. Generalizing and universalizing logic across the region can bring forth what the anthropologist James Ferguson calls stereotypical “Africa talk” and policy visions built on “misleading, factually incorrect and often racist” assumptions that African cities are, uniformly, exceptional failures.[1] This essay argues for differentiation, nuance, and “thick description” in African urban studies, and for comparativism that acknowledges specificity as a means for developing appropriate urban policies. The concept of thick description is most associated with the anthropologist Clifford Geertz, who saw it as a phrase that encapsulated ideal practices of ethnography: detailed data collection and fieldwork aimed both at interpretation of the “complex conceptual structures” in a society and “the most down-to-earth” elements of everyday life in a place.[2] This essay works to analyze the nuances that differentiate two seemingly similar East African cities, Dar es Salaam and Nairobi, in terms of the “conceptual structures” behind urban planning and policy and the “down-to-earth” aspects of policy implementation. There are important variations in planning dynamics between African cities, and analyzing this variation requires “unpacking particularities of places and focusing on what is actually happening.”[3] The essay contributes to the broader movement in global urban studies for rethinking how and why to do comparisons. Contemporary urban studies scholarship based on or in the Global South, and particularly Sub-Saharan Africa, frequently argues for “negotiating the complexity of specific urban contexts” in composing comparisons of those contexts without immediate reliance on Global North bases for comparison.[4] This essay’s generative comparison stresses both “shared features” and “differences” for the two cities in order to “better understand outcomes” in policy implementation.[5] This comparison of Dar es Salaam and Nairobi can suggest how globally “hegemonic policy agendas” for one-size-fits-all solutions to urban issues fall short in implementation when the “particularities of places” in urban Africa are misunderstood or ignored, especially in terms of governance cultures.[6]

The focus of comparison resides with the character of urban governance and municipal capacity for policymaking. The term used in the abstract, archeology, is not meant literally, but rather as a signal for digging or excavating the recent past of urban governance.[7] I focus on global climate change because it constitutes the most urgent arena of planning and policy for Africa’s urban areas. There is great diversity to impacts, outcomes and planning capacities on the continent but, across that diversity, “adaptation to…climatic variations has become a daunting task for governments, city authorities and residents.”[8] The comparison of Dar es Salaam and Nairobi brings out the commonality and the diversity in this daunting task, suggesting why universalizing policy approaches to climate adaptation are likely to fail.

Dar es Salaam and Nairobi Compared: General Themes

Dar es Salaam and Nairobi are quite comparable. They are roughly the same size, with Dar es Salaam recently surpassing Nairobi in population. That estimation is based on a more rapid recent growth rate, but both cities have grown comparably rapidly for 60 years (Table 3). Beyond size or growth, there are other obvious aspects of comparability. The last three decades have brought a re-introduction of multi-party politics in both cities. Geopolitically, the two cities are linked in the twin bombings carried out against US embassies in them on August 7, 1998. They were both colonial capital cities and they are both now the primary cities of their respective countries.

As comparable as the two cities may be in their grand narratives, are there aspects of urban governance configurations and the development trajectories in the two cities that are diverging in the 21st century? The grand narrative that has dominated comparisons of Kenya and Tanzania for more than 50 years is that Kenya has had a more capitalistic economy and a (slowly) democratizing political system while Tanzania has had a more centralized and state-led economy and closed political system. One may quibble with some elements of that generalization, since Tanzania is not as socialistic in 2021 as it was in 1971 and there are enduring elements of authoritarianism in Kenya, but differentiations at the national scale remain. Tanzania’s government has a far stronger hand in the economy and its ruling party faces far less opposition. Kenya’s political and economic relations remain much more firmly allied to the capitalist West, and its multi-party political system is vigorous and highly charged by comparison. To wit, as of 2021, the only governing party Tanzania has ever had, CCM (Chama cha Mapinduzi, or Party of Revolution), holds 287 of the 390 seats (74 percent) in Tanzania’s Parliament, with four opposition parties splitting the other 103 seats and the largest opposition party, Chadema, holding only 62 seats (16 percent). In Kenya’s Senate, the governing Jubilee party holds just 34 of 67 seats, while the opposition holds 33, with 28 of these belonging to the National Super Alliance. In Kenya’s National Assembly, the opposition actually holds the majority of seats, 176 of 349, and Jubilee has only 172. At the local level, the contrast is even more extreme: no opposition party has ever held more than three seats on the Dar es Salaam City Council or any of its lower-tier municipal councils, while Nairobi’s locally governing party has flipped from the governing party at the national level to the opposition, and back again, in evenly divided chambers, for nearly 30 years. These differences play out in subtle dimensions of urban development and governance dynamics.

First, while both cities appear on the Globalization-and-World-Cities (GaWC) Research Network rankings of global economic significance, Nairobi has consistently ranked above Dar es Salaam (Table 2). From 2000 to 2020, Dar es Salaam did move from the lowest-ranking fifth-tier category, “Sufficiency”, to the bottom of the upper third tier, or “Gamma +”, but Nairobi, which was already a third-tier (Gamma) city in 2000, is in the middle of the second-tier (Beta) list as of 2020. Nairobi is the highest-ranked city in East Africa and in SSA outside of South Africa, scoring behind only Johannesburg, Cairo, Casablanca and Cape Town on the continent; Dar es Salaam is ninth among African cities. Nairobi is 90th in the world, and Dar es Salaam 167th. The GaWC’s ranking is based around finance and scores for “advanced producer services” in global economic networks.[9] But almost any measure of what constitutes a “global city” would produce a similar differentiation. Nairobi is the United Nations’ secondary headquarters, the primary airport and media hub for East Africa, and a greater setting for transnational corporate activity, mobile technologies, or foreign direct investment than Dar es Salaam.[10] Across any sector of urban economic activity, Nairobi is more global than Dar es Salaam.

Second, both cities have experienced national discourses of governance decentralization coupled with actual centralization over the last 50 years. However, local governance autonomy has faced greater challenges in Dar es Salaam given Tanzania’s centralizing authoritarian tendencies. The marked uptick in authoritarianism under Tanzania’s late President, John Magufuli who governed from 2015 to 2021, included emphasis on relocating the national capital to Dodoma. Technically, Dodoma has been Tanzania’s capital for more than forty years, since Tanzania’s first President Julius Nyerere pushed the then single-party government to build a centrally located, agriculturally oriented new capital. In practice, the country’s leaders dragged their feet in fully implementing the move to the dusty, remote new capital.[11] Magufuli heavy-handedly insisted on removing all national government functions from Dar es Salaam to Dodoma.[12] His Dodoma obsession was coupled with a decline of national state interest or foreign investment in Dar es Salaam. It remains to be seen whether this trend will continue under President Samia Suluhu Hassan, who replaced Magufuli after his sudden March 2021 death, but Hassan is a stalwart, longstanding leader in CCM. While she made noticeable changes immediately, primarily she is returning Tanzania to its familiar CCM-dominated development discourses.[13] For example, she returned to the custom of giving her first public speech as President, laying out her national development priorities, to invited elders in Dar es Salaam, as Nyerere’s first three successors had done, while Magufuli had broken with this tradition by making his first speech in Dodoma. While the style of this and subsequent speeches marked a shift away from the menacing and domineering tone that often characterized Magufuli’s governing persona, the substance of her first speech reinforced the primacy of the CCM and the national government in shaping development policy at the national and local levels.[14] Within these enduring emphases, one finds the long-dominant narrative of governance for Dar es Salaam, combining an overbearing national state, underfunded local government, and the prominence of informality and urban growth outside of the planning framework, where local urban communities largely fend for themselves.[15]

Nairobi also has prominent informality and generally weak local government, and Kenya’s central government has intervened in its governance continually. Nevertheless, the city has benefited from an apparent opening of society and politics in Kenya in the last decade or so.[16] This has perhaps manifested in the implementation of Kenya’s 2010 constitution that decentralized substantial authority to the newly created sub-national “County” level. There are definite indications that this decentralization and democratization of planning and governance processes has been more rhetorical than real, but they are still more tangible than any reforms one finds in Dar es Salaam.[17]

Lastly, the two cities present notable contrasts in terms of global climate change and, as a consequence of their governance differentiation, capacity for planning adaptations to it. Nairobi appears to face a more indirect threat from global climate change than Dar es Salaam, given Nairobi’s inland location and Dar es Salaam’s mostly low-lying coastal setting. As severe flooding in May 2021 showed, this does not mean that Nairobi is inoculated against impacts from climate change, nor that its relatively greater local capacity for creating and implementing policy to address the threat can prevent devastation.[18] Over the long term, however, the governance dynamics in Nairobi are likely to improve the capacity for grassroots climate interventions to take hold in a more socially sustainable fashion than in Dar es Salaam, where the state has long marginalized community environmental groups.[19] The next two segments excavate transformations of governance dynamics in the two cities respectively since 1990, as the urgency of addressing global climate issues has grown. If “planning implementation and outcomes in African cities can best be described as ‘negotiated,’”[20] then my aim is to show how these ‘negotiations’ proceed in Dar es Salaam and Nairobi, with an eye toward planning for climate change.

This comparison is built from an extensive literature review. The concentration in this review leaned toward works that applied in-depth, fine-grained thick description approaches to urban governance analysis. While I have field experience on urban governance in both cities stretching back more than 30 years, the COVID-19 pandemic prevented any 2020–21 fieldwork. Fortunately, both cities have ever-expanding literatures on this essay’s issues, from which I have drawn to construct the argument.

Governance, Urban Planning, and Climate Change in Dar es Salaam

The current general trends in governance and urban planning in Dar es Salaam are not favorable for the implementation of participatory, grassroots climate change adaptation policies, and these trends have substantial historical roots. Since 1990, Tanzania has experienced the re-introduction of a multiparty political system and a (state-directed) capitalist economy. These transformations coincided with substantial domestic migration to Dar es Salaam. Dar es Salaam is becoming a megacity informally, without much successfully implemented formal planning.[21] City master plans were developed in 1968 and 1979 but largely without implementation.[22] A national urban development framework launched in 1980 was clearly aimed at pushing growth and investment away from Dar es Salaam, particularly through moving the country’s capital to Dodoma. Tanzania’s first President Julius Nyerere’s vision of ujamaa socialism built on “decentralization” entailed the abolition of local government, including Dar’s city council, which did not even exist from 1972 to 1978. Hence much of the city “has grown up ignored in plain view.”[23]

The condition of pervasive informality and governance neglect extends to the provision of urban services and infrastructure. With the exception of some aspects of programs such as the Community Infrastructural Upgrading Program, Sustainable Urban Development Program or the Bus Rapid Transit system, the prevailing view of an extensive body of research concurs that, for nearly a century, “planning policy in Dar has… failed to give voice to non-elites.”[24] Out of colonial-era and socialist-era strong-arm tactics, for many urban Tanzanians, urban planning still means whimsical government interventions and applications of inappropriate regulations. Commitment to participatory urban policy has waxed and waned in the central government. In the 1990s, Dar es Salaam launched the pilot project for UN-Habitat’s Sustainable Cities Program (SCP), but, despite its claims for building an “inclusive” city, even that project worked against inclusivity in implementation.[25] For example, in its signature program, for participatory community-based solid waste management, the SCP actively consolidated waste collection into the hands of two large-scale private companies within its first five years, having begun with 68 community organizations formed by local activists.[26]

Dar es Salaam’s City Council since the SCP’s demise has lacked the capacity and political will to reverse non-democratic and non-participatory trends. It has not kept up with the rapid pace of land cover change or property development and lacks comprehensive land registration. While national government rhetoric has promoted decentralization, in practice, reforms aimed at decentralization have been poorly implemented, and the national state has seized even more control over local government. The President of Tanzania lies at the heart of all decision-making in the country and in Dar es Salaam: John Magufuli’s last official act as President before his death in 2021 was to abolish the Dar es Salaam City Council and elevate the smaller Ilala Municipal Council to take over its duties. As with many of his policy pronouncements, Magufuli framed his move as part of a broader fight against local government corruption, but it was a capricious, extra-constitutional action that appears to have been more for show (i.e., to show that the President could remove a democratically elected unit of local government on a whim) than for substance. It is too soon to say what its practical consequences may be, but it is pertinent that President Hassan has not reversed this decision.[27]

Dar es Salaam’s ordinary poor majority often manage to do for themselves regarding basic needs and housing, through community-based organizations and activism. That is evident in the vast informal settlements in low-lying areas which dominate the built environment. Ordinary residents find small local means for reducing crises in their immediate domestic setting, but lack the capacity for scaling up these sorts of solutions in meaningful ways.[28] Government efforts to engage local communities in planning processes often fail to generate active participation, given the cautious and even jaded view that past efforts engendered in contemporary residents.[29] Residents felt a “sense of deep alienation” as far back as the 1990s in Dar es Salaam and characterized state planning policies as mixing “hostile, repressive, adversarial, extractive, competitive… and indifferent” approaches.[30] The alienation continued through the heavy-handed implementation of a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system in the 2000s and 2010s – often hailed as a “success,” the BRT was implemented from the top down with little public input and the forceful presence of the national state.[31] Arguments for what Roy et al. term “creative urban planning” that would build from the personal and “collective” efforts in informal settlements, while inspiring, would rely on an unrealistic transformation of the landscape of governance and local politics, given the centralizing direction of political society in Dar and in Tanzania for decades.[32]

Multi-partyism has had little impact on politics of governance for Dar es Salaam. Initially, the new multi-party era of the mid-1990s brought a City Council in Dar es Salaam that had 55 democratically elected councilors, and one from an opposition party. The elected body became a nuisance to the central government controlled by the ruling CCM. In mid-1996, Tanzania’s Prime Minister dissolved the council and replaced it with the Dar es Salaam City Commission, whose membership was entirely appointed by his office – pointedly, this de-democratization occurred as the Sustainable Dar es Salaam Program was supposedly implementing policies for an “inclusive” city. When local government was reorganized and a democratically elected body re-introduced in 2000, the new council was entirely CCM-dominated, as it has been ever since. The creation of three elected municipal councils within Dar in 2000 (Kinondoni, Ilala, and Temeke) and two more (Ubungo and Kigamboni) in 2017 have been false steps toward decentralization or democratization; Ubungo and Kigamboni were created on a whim under Magufuli just as abruptly as he would later dissolve the Dar Council.[33] These bodies, regardless of Magufuli’s last-minute promotion of Ilala and elimination of the Dar Council, have more limited authority and autonomy than the central-government appointed Dar es Salaam Regional Government.

Kombe and Kreibich saw an elite planning apparatus 20 years ago that said “do and don’t at the same time” in Dar es Salaam.[34] Sometimes the regime was “sympathetic and tolerant” toward informal areas, building on the rhetoric of inclusivity and the participation of civil society, stressing community “enablement,” and ujamaa’s grassroots dimensions.[35] Yet often what occurred was instead “a heavy-handed, insensitive and bullying approach to the exercise of powers against the urban poor.”[36] Less has changed in two decades than might appear at first glance, with particular consequences for climate planning.

Dar es Salaam suffers from increasingly frequent and severe precipitation events, urban flooding, and seawater intrusion. The city’s prevalent informal settlements are often low-lying; with increased frequency and severity of floods, these majority areas are under severe threat.[37] While there have been substantial recent state-led infrastructure projects like the BRT, most levels of local government demonstrate little awareness or readiness for climate change.[38] Even where capacity exists for climate-related urban planning and management, “only limited momentum exists among city stakeholders” for policies aimed at resilience.[39] Dar es Salaam did have a Mayor’s Task Force on Climate Change, Disaster Risk and the Urban Poor under the mayoralty of Didas Masaburi, who governed from 2010-2015, and the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI) and the World Bank have engaged in climate adaptation policy research and development in the city. The late Mayor’s Task Force, the ICLEI and the World Bank invested in awareness-raising for local officials and selected stakeholders in the city, but without substantial implementation of broad-based or large-scale adaptation or mitigation plans. Within communities, there are specific examples such as those cited by Kiunsi of residents stacking used tires along a drainage channel or building low walls in front of homes in the low-lying Mtoni informal settlement “to protect their houses from being washed away by stormwater and high sea tides.”[40] Yet Mtoni residents, like the majority of the 75 percent of Dar es Salaam’s population who reside in informal settlements, regularly document for researchers “their lack of inclusion in the city’s development activities” more broadly, or in any broadly coordinated climate change mitigation or adaptation plans.[41] Thus, despite some “sympathetic and tolerant” moments, Dar es Salaam still seems far from a context for genuinely making climate change adaptations central to urban planning and management.[42] The pervasive absence of a consistent commitment to a democratic and participatory ethos in urban governance over the last thirty years or more hinders the development and scaling-up of effective climate change adaptation or mitigation.

Governance, Urban Planning, and Climate Change in Nairobi

While the dynamics of governance and urban planning for Nairobi share features with Dar es Salaam, subtle differences emerge with thick description, and tracing the changes of the last three decades can elucidate why greater potential for more democratic and participatory climate change adaptation policies seems apparent for Nairobi. As home to both UN-Habitat and the UN Environment Program, Nairobi is a common focus of research and analysis from these two offices, and a more thoroughly studied city in the social sciences generally.[43] In part because of its global prominence institutionally, Nairobi also has had a plethora of ambitious urban plans. Nairobi’s planners and elites have long seen the city as a model – and, recently, for a “world-class city-region.”[44] Nairobi looks very differently to its majority of citizens. Nairobi’s inequalities and injustices are more dramatic than Dar es Salaam’s, with greater violence and unease.

The most visible manifestation of this unease appears in the rapid expansion of under-serviced informal settlements. Most informal areas have their own rules of operation, which continue the “self-help” reputation of Nairobi from the early independence era, but which also manifest longer-term processes producing and reproducing poverty and inequality.[45] Government response to the growth of informal housing veered from profound indifference to ruthless demolition and back over time, in tune with political expediencies of the central government.[46] Authoritarian President Daniel Moi’s 2002 departure (having been in power since 1978) did little to reduce political tensions.[47]

The 1992 end of single-party rule, and then the 2002 end of the Moi era, did signal possibilities for openings in governance to provide for popular participation and more effective service delivery.[48] Kenya’s 1992 multiparty elections even gave the city council its first opposition majority. That new opposition council created a progressive, popular 1993 citywide convention to gather views on “The Nairobi We Want.”[49] The City Council and the post-2013 City-County Assembly have had multiple parties represented on them throughout the years since 1992—indeed, the council and assembly have been as evenly divided as the upper and lower legislative chambers at the national level.

In 2008, the national government established the Ministry of Nairobi Metropolitan Development (MoNMeD) as an apparent moment of planning reform in a post-authoritarian city. MoNMed produced a bevy of new planning documents. The biggest example of MoNMeD’s impacts came with a master plan, Metro 2030. Metro 2030 was roundly critiqued as superficial, highly business-oriented, unrealistic, and embedded with “destructive modernist ideas.”[50] The master plan did, however, present an ambitious vision of Nairobi as a city-region, and it offered enough in the way of proposed plans for climate adaptation to allow the Economist Intelligence Unit to rate the city above most Sub-Saharan African cities outside South Africa in its “African Green Cities Index.”[51] Even beyond the master plan, Nairobi in 2008 to 2012 had a flurry of formal urban planning activity.[52] Some planning innovations were set in motion by the apparent retreat of authoritarianism.[53] These included including a new overall spatial planning framework, an updated framework for improving urban services, a new metropolitan transportation plan with a limited commuter rail network, new forms of communication with the general public, and an open public discussion on the relationship of planning to the city.[54]

Kenya’s citizens also endorsed a transformative new constitution in 2010.55 The implications of this constitutional change for urban planning in Nairobi were not uniformly positive. The new post-2010 county structure provided for no mechanisms for planning for the whole of the Nairobi metropolitan area—for which the Metro 2030 master plan had at least provided a map.[56] There were other as-yet unanswered questions afoot following 2010, too, given the democratizing direction the new constitution suggested. As planner Peter Ngau put it: “Are we, as planners, going to champion the changes brought about by the new constitution or are we again going to serve the interests of the rich minority?”[57] There were dynamic, innovative and progressive local plans set in motion in Nairobi both with the ministry and after its demise; in addition to the government-led plans noted above, major community-based initiatives blossomed in many of Nairobi’s informal settlements, such as Carolina for Kibera’s program for participatory planning, MapKibera, the many environmental planning programs initiated through the Mathare Valley Football Club, arts programming through the Kwani Trust, or the Kibera Public Space Project (KPSP) collaboration between the Kounkuey Design Initiative and six Kibera community groups (discussed further below).[58] Ngau’s question still lingers over Nairobi’s planning landscape, however, perhaps due most of all to the enduring stench of corruption in local government and the continued unproductive intrusions of the national government into urban management.

Kenya’s 2013 elections represented the implementation of the new 2010 constitution, and thus led to the election of the first Governor of Nairobi City-County, Evans Kidero. Kidero successfully campaigned as a “slum born” reformer, but his administration was debilitated by national government intransigence and financial controls, among other issues. Kidero lost his re-election bid in 2017 to Mike Mbuvi Sonko, “a self-confessed jailbird with a penchant for juvenile drama” who “fostered an ecology of inefficiency” and corruption.[59] The level of corruption reached a new peak in 2020. Nairobi’s Assembly and Kenya’s Senate impeached Governor Sonko and removed him from office in December 2020, for violations of the 2010 Constitution, abuse of office and other crimes. On the one hand, the case illustrated the continued strong hand of the central government, since Sonko’s downfall came about in part from his clashes with the presidentially-appointed Nairobi Metropolitan Services director – whose offices had steadily taken over policy levers from the Governor’s office.[60] On the other hand, by contrast with Dar es Salaam, the processes of impeachment, removal, and replacement, and their contestation, have all played out openly and with intense debate over the rule of law.[61] The comparison with Magufuli’s unilateral and uncontested actions in Dar es Salaam at almost exactly the same time could not be more revealing.

This is not to claim Nairobi as a model of collaborative, democratic planning. Much of the “negotiation” of planning is still top-down. Yet there are subtle degrees of difference. Comparable to Dar es Salaam, an “anti-urban bias in Kenya’s revenue sharing formula” shortchanges local government, and the large-scale presence of both national state and international agency actors further reduce local government autonomy.[62] While Nairobi has a considerable degree of informality in its settlement structure, it is less than that of Dar es Salaam, and Nairobi has a much longer history of a freewheeling highly skewed capitalist land market. Thus, some aspects of Nairobi’s “exclusionary governance” and “unequal terrain of power relations” have endured in the post-authoritarian era, but not in the comparably uncontested manner one finds in Dar es Salaam.[63]

Many reforms of governance in Nairobi led to outcomes similar to those in Dar: “citizen non-engagement,” where “citizens turned away,” and power was concentrated in the hands of corrupt councilors while “collective action” from citizens was “absent.”[64] Ordinary Nairobians were still largely absent from participatory programs and processes. Numerous examples have been documented of local-level disenfranchisement, resistance to supposed reforms, and expansion of socio-environmental injustice.[65] Yet examples also abound, like the Kibera Public Space Project (KPSP), of community projects in Nairobi that have produced innovative solutions and participation.

In the last ten years, KPSP has engaged in community-based planning for public spaces in Kibera and creation of “hybrid” green infrastructure as part of a program for comprehensive climate change adaptation.[66] In their day-to-day work, KPSP is committed to “true agency in the decision-making process” for a wide net of partners and stakeholders, avoiding oversimplification and disenfranchisement in building toward “multi-stakeholder participation, sectoral integration and networked change.”[67] Their projects are community-managed but work carefully with “municipal government bodies” to create networked, sustainable drainage infrastructure explicitly to combat increased flooding in Kibera and other negative environmental impacts of climate change.[68] Scaling-up small-scale climate adaptation projects like KPSP’s green infrastructure program presents substantial governance challenges and “messy realities,” but broader “imaginative and creative solutions” seem possible in Nairobi by comparison to Dar es Salaam.[69] Thorn, Thornton and Helfgott demonstrated how “processes of adaptation” in the informal settlement of Mathare “have become institutionalized through time” as third- or fourth-generation slum-dwellers continue to seek innovative solutions to climate change-induced environmental problems, despite the ways in which “attitudes at higher governance levels” sometimes stood in the way of those solutions.[70]

These attitudes will not magically disappear, but these and other examples suggest a degree to which planning dynamics in Nairobi contain a greater capacity for openness and possibility for scaling up communitylevel innovations in climate change adaptation and mitigation efforts.[71] As in Dar es Salaam, there is a limited public comprehension of impacts from climate change in Nairobi’s informal settlements, and a low level of commitment from local or national government despite strong rhetorical flourishes.[72] Displacement, loss of property, and disease have expanded with the increased frequency and severity of flood events in informal zones like Kibera as they have grown in size through in-migration of climate refugees.[73] As in Dar es Salaam, much of the weight of implementing adaptation measures falls on community groups. Poor areas of Nairobi are rife with projects for environmental upgrading, but these are marginalized within overlapping, elitist and heavily bureaucratized local governance relationships. There does appear, however, to be an increasing capacity for collaborative governance and local- and national-state intervention, and a higher degree of engagement with and between civil society organizations. This capacity is showing itself to be more frequently put to use in planning for climate change adaptation in Nairobi.


This essay has highlighted the importance of recognizing nuances that separate even seemingly comparable cases such as Dar es Salaam and Nairobi. The excavation of the recent past of urban governance in these two rapidly growing major cities has suggested ways in which their narratives, while remaining within the realm of comparability, show increasing distinctions in governance terms. Both are considered "global cities" by widely-accepted indexes like the GaWC, but Nairobi consistently ranks ahead of Dar es Salaam. Multi-partyism is irrelevant in Dar while central to urban life in Nairobi. While both have experienced state discourses of decentralization amid de facto centralization, there appears to be a more substantive reality of community-led planning with and beyond the state in Nairobi. Urban development in both cities has a high degree of informality, but this is consistently greater proportionally in Dar es Salaam, in terms of a higher percentage of the population living in informal settlements and working in informal sector jobs. Nairobi remains far from an ideal model of urban governance and politics, as the more unequal city with greater political violence. Yet it seems to evidence a greater trajectory toward transparency and inclusive governance; one need only make a cursory comparison of the websites of the Dar es Salaam City Council and Nairobi City County government to see this.[74]

I concluded each case study discussion by outlining what the governance landscape of the two cities might mean for combatting climate change and examples of local contexts where climate adaptation planning has been undertaken. Both cities have some local-level innovations in adaptation and mitigation efforts, and both lack broader city-wide consciousness or management frameworks for addressing climate dynamics. But Dar es Salaam appears to both face greater immediate consequences (especially due to sea-level rise and more pervasive problems of climate change-related urban flooding across the city, despite the May 2021 flooding crisis in Nairobi) and to have more limited capacity for scaling up community-led innovations.

Cities in Sub-Saharan Africa contend with several intertwined challenging dynamics. Despite having low proportions of their overall populations in cities, SSA countries still lead the world in rates of urbanization. SSA cities often appear to outsiders as insignificant or marginal in measures of global and world importance, but their transformations from globalization loom large internally. Thirdly, cities in the region contribute only minimally to global climate change while experiencing substantial impacts from it. The realities and consequences of these factors vary across the region, as do capacities for urban planning and management of them. It is essential for global urban studies to engage in thick description of research, to avoid eliding distinctions between cities in Africa. An essay such as this of limited length cannot do justice to that form of thick description, but further comparative research in urban Sub-Saharan Africa aimed at contributing to global and international studies can reinforce the valuable lessons that a deep dive into subtle contrasts can offer. This form of comparison can furthermore extend the argument for developing complex comparisons across and between highly comparable cities in Africa from the method of tracing differentiated outcomes in planning and policy. Such comparisons underscore the importance of understanding the particularities of places in the face of universalizing one-size-fits-all approaches to policy that frequently bedevil climate change adaptation strategies in cities in the Global South.

Table 1
Table 2 and Table 3

1 James Ferguson, Global Shadows: Africa in the Neoliberal World Order (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2006), 2–3.

2 Clifford Geertz, The Interpretation of Cultures: Selected Essays (New York: Basic Books, 1973), 314.

3 Liza R. Cirolia, and Stephen Berrisford, “‘Negotiated Planning’: Diverse Trajectories of Implementation in Nairobi, Addis Ababa, and Harare,” Habitat International 59 (2017): 71.

4 Jennifer Robinson, “Thinking Cities Through Elsewhere: Comparative Tactics for a More Global Urban Studies,” Progress in Human Geography 40, no. 1 (2016): 5; Colin McFarlane, “The Comparative City: Knowledge, Learning, Urbanism,” International Journal of Urban and Regional Research 34, no. 4 (2010): 725–42; and Ola Söderström, Cities in Relations: Trajectories of Urban Development in Hanoi and Ougadougou (Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2014).

5 Robinson, “Thinking Cities Through Elsewhere,” 20–22.

6 Jennifer Robinson, Comparative Urbanism: Tactics for Global Urban Studies (London: Wiley, 2022), 38; Jennifer Robinson, “Comparative Urbanism: New Geographies and Cultures of Theorizing the Urban,” International Journal of Urban and Regional Research 41, no. 1 (2016): 187–199.

7 Robinson, “Thinking Cities Through Elsewhere,” 21.

8 Michael Addaney and Patrick Cobbinah, “Climate Change, Urban Planning and Sustainable Development in Africa: The Difference Worth Appreciating,” in The Geography of Climate Change Adaptation in Urban Africa, edited by Patrick Cobbinah and Michael Addaney (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2019), 4; Michael Addaney, “Adaptation Governance and Building Resilience in the Face of Climate Change in African Cities: Policy Responses and Emerging Practices from Accra,” in the same volume, 479–498; and Innocent Chirisa, Elmond Bandauko, Elias Mazhindu, Ndarov Audrey Kwangwama, and Godfrey Chikowore, “Building Resilient Infrastructure in the Face of Climate Change in African Cities: Scope, Potentiality and Challenges,” Development Southern Africa 33, no. 1 (2016): 113–127.

9 “The World According to GaWC,” accessed February 13 and May 13, 2021, https://www.lboro.ac.uk/ microsites/geography/gawc/gawcworlds.html; Myers, Rethinking Urbanism, 7–9 and 133–34.

10 Lauren Rosenberg and Alan Brent, “Infrastructure Disruption in ‘Silicon Savannah’: Exploring the Idea of the Creative Class and their Relation to Quality of Place in Nairobi, Kenya,” International Journal of Urban and Regional Research 44, no. 5 (2020): 809–820.

11 Garth Myers, African Cities: Alternative Visions of Urban Theory and Practice (London: Zed Books, 2011), 43–69.

12 Joanna Ondrusek-Roy, "‘Tunajenga Taifa Letu’ (We are Building Our Nation): The Emergence and Evolution of New City Building in Post-Socialist Tanzania," Unpublished Master’s thesis, McGill University, 2020, 28.

13 Tatu Mohamed and Rosemary Mirondo, “Why President’s Address to Dar City Elders is a Big Deal,” The Citizen (Dar es Salaam), May 7, 2021, https://www.thecitizen.co.tz/tanzania/news/national/-whypresident-s-address-to-dar-city-elders-is-a-big-deal-3391090.

14 Michaela Collord, “Tanzania’s 2020 Election: Return of the One-Party State,” French Institute of International Relations (Ifri), February 2021, https://www.ifri.org/en/publications/etudes-de-lifri/ tanzanias-2020-election-return-one-party-state.

15 Brian Dill, Fixing the African State: Recognition, Politics and Community-Based Development in Tanzania (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2013).

16 Joseph Kimani, Rosie Steege, Jack Makau, Kilion Nyambuga, Jane Wairutu and Rachel Tolhurst, “Building Forward Better: Inclusive Livelihood Support in Nairobi’s Informal Settlements,” IDS Bulletin 52, no. 1 (2021): 37–44.

17 Phillipp Horn, “Enabling Participatory Planning to be Scaled in Exclusionary Urban Political Environments: Lessons from the Mukuru Special Planning Area in Nairobi," Environment & Urbanization 34, no. 1 (2021): 1–20; Ellen Bassett, “Reform and Resistance: The Political Economy of Land and Planning Reform in Kenya,” Urban Studies 57, no. 6 (2020): 1164–1183; and Francis Dakyaga, Abubakari Ahmed, and Mavis Lepiinlia Sillim, “Governing Ourselves for Sustainability: Everyday Ingenuities in the Governance of Water Infrastructure in the Informal Settlements of Dar es Salaam,” Urban Forum 32, no. 2 (2021): 111–129.

18 Steve Otieno, “Floods of Death, Destruction in Nairobi,” Nation (Nairobi), May 15, 2021, https:// nation.africa/kenya/news/floods-of-death-destruction-in-nairobi-3400864.

19 Emily Brownell, Gone to Ground: A History of Environment and Infrastructure in Dar es Salaam (Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press, 2020).

20 Cirolia and Berrisford, “Negotiated Planning,” 71.

21 Alexandra Hill, Tanja Hühner, Volker Kreibich, and Christian Lindner, “Dar es Salaam, Megacity of Tomorrow: Informal Urban Expansion and the Provision of Technical Infrastructure,” in Megacities: Our Global Urban Future, edited by Frauke Kraas, Surinder Aggarwal, Martin Coy, and Günter Mertins (Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Springer, 2014): 165–177; and James Brennan and Andrew Burton, “The Emerging Metropolis: a History of Dar es Salaam, circa 1862–2000,” in Dar es Salaam: Histories from an Emerging Metropolis, edited by James Brennan, Andrew Burton and Yusuf Lawi (Dar es Salaam: Mkuki na Nyota Publishing, 2007): 13–75.

22 Allen Armstrong, “Master Plans for Dar es Salaam, Tanzania,” Habitat International 11, no. 2 (1987): 133–146.

23 Garth Myers, Disposable Cities: Garbage, Governance and Sustainable Development in Urban Africa (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2005), 42.

24 Daniela Schofield and Femke Gubbels, “Informing Notions of Climate Change Adaptation: a Case Study of Everyday Gendered Realities of Climate Change Adaptation in an Informal Settlement in Dar es Salaam,” Environment & Urbanization 31, no. 1 (2019): 109; Myers, Disposable Cities; Richard Rugemalila and Leah Gibbs, “Urban Water Governance Failure and Local Strategies for Overcoming Water Shortages in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania,” Environment and Planning C: Government and Policy 33 (2015): 412–427; Trond Vedeld, Wilbard J. Kombe, Clara Kweka-Msale, Ndeye Mareme Ndour, Adrien Coly, and Siri Hellevik, “Multi-Level Governance, Resilience to Flood Risks and Coproduction in Urban Africa,” in Urban Vulnerability and Climate Change in Africa: A Multidisciplinary Approach, edited by Stephan Pauleit, Adrien Coly, Sandra Fohlmeister, Paolo Gasparini, Gertrud Jørgensen, Sigrun Kabisch, Wilbard J. Kombe, Sarah Lindley, Ingo Simonis, and Kumelachew Yeshitela (Cham, Switzerland: Springer, 2015): 287–318; Fred Krüger, Alexandra Titz, Raphael Arndt, Franziska Groß, Franziska Mehrbach, Vanessa Pajung, Lorenz Suda, Martina Wadenstorfer and Laura Wimmer, “The Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) in Dar es Salaam: A Pilot Study on Critical Infrastructure, Sustainable Urban Development and Livelihoods,” Sustainability 13, no. 1 (2021): 1–29; Matteo Rizzo, Taken for a Ride: Grounding Neoliberalism, Precarious Labour and Public Transport in an African Metropolis (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017); and Method J. Gwaleba and Fahria Masum, “Participation of Informal Settlers in Participatory Land Use Planning Project in Pursuit of Tenure Security,” Urban Forum 29, no. 2 (2018): 169–184.

25 Myers, Disposable Cities, 39-67.

26 Myers, Disposable Cities, 51.

27 Emmanuel Mtengwa, “President Magufuli Officially Dissolves Dar es Salaam City Council,” The Citizen (Dar es Salaam), February 25, 2021, https://www.thecitizen.co.tz/tanzania/news/national/president-magufuli-officially-dissolves-dar-es-salaam-city-council--3303208.

28 Tumsifu Nnkya, Why Planning Does Not Work? Land Use Planning and Residents Rights in Tanzania (Dar es Salaam: Mkuki na Nyota Press, 2007).

29 Gwaleba and Masum, “Participation of Informal Settlers;” Seth Schindler, Nancy Duong Nguyen, and Desdery Gerase Barongo, “Transformative Top-Down Planning in a Small African City: How Residents in Bagamoyo, Tanzania Connect with a City in Motion,” Environment and Planning C: Politics and Space 39, no. 2 (2021): 336–353; Pascale Hofmann, “Meeting WASH SDG6: Insights from Everyday Practices in Dar es Salaam,” Environment & Urbanization 33, no. 1 (2020): 173–192; and Lorena Pasquini, “The Urban Governance of Climate Change Adaptation in Least-Developed African Countries and in Small Cities: the Engagement of Local Decision-Makers in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, and Karonga, Malawi,” Climate and Development 12, no. 5 (2020): 408–419.

30 Mohamed Halfani, “The Challenge of Urban Governance in Africa: Institutional Change and the Knowledge Gaps,” in Governing Africa’s Cities, edited by Mark Swilling, Johannesburg: Witwatersrand University Press, 123; and Tade Akin Aina, “The State and Civil Society: Politics, Government, and Social Organization in African Cities,” in The Urban Challenge in Africa: Growth and Management of its Large Cities, edited by Carole Rakodi, Tokyo: United Nations University Press, 427.

31 Rizzo, Taken for a Ride.

32 Manoj Roy, Riziki Shemdoe, David Hulme, Nicolaus Mwageni, and Alex Gough, “Climate Change and Declining Levels of Green Structures: Life in Informal Settlements of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania,” Landscape and Urban Planning 180 (2018): 282.

33 J. M. Lusugga Kironde, Financing the Sustainable Development of Cities in Tanzania: the Case of Dar es Salaam and Mwanza (Dar es Salaam: University College of Lands and Architectural Studies, 2001), 14.

34 Wilbard J. Kombe and Volker Kreibich, "Informal Land Management in Tanzania," SPRING Research Series 29 (Dortmund: University of Dortmund, 2000), 41.

35 Patrick McAuslan, “Law and the Poor: the Case of Dar es Salaam,” in Law and the City, edited by Andreas Philippopoulos-Mihalopoulos (London: Routledge-Cavendish, 2007), 177.

36 MacAuslan, “Law and the Poor,” 178–79.

37 Abiy Kebede and Robert Nicholls, “Exposure and Vulnerability to Climate Extremes: Population and Asset Exposure to Coastal Flooding in Dar es Salaam (Tanzania): Vulnerability to Climate Extremes,” Regional Environmental Change, 12, no. 1 (2011): 81–94; Fatemeh Jalayer, Raffaele De Risi, Alphonce Kyessi, Elinorata Mbuya, E., and Nebyou Yonas, “Vulnerability of Built Environment to Flooding in African Cities,” in Urban Vulnerability and Climate Change in Africa: A Multidisciplinary Approach, edited by Stephan Pauleit, Adrien Coly, Sandra Fohlmeister, Paolo Gasparini, Gertrud Jørgensen, Sigrun Kabisch, Wilbard J. Kombe, Sarah Lindley, Ingo Simonis, and Kumelachew Yeshitela (Cham, Switzerland: Springer, 2015): 77–106; and Dionis Rugai and Gabriel R. Kassenga, “Climate Change Impacts and Institutional Response Capacity in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania,” in Climate Change Vulnerability in Southern African Cities, edited by Silvia Macchi and Maurizio Tiepolo (Cham, Switzerland: Springer, 2014): 39–55.

38 Robert Kiunsi, “The Constraints on Climate Change Adaptation in a City with a Large Development Deficit: the Case of Dar es Salaam,” Environment & Urbanization 25, no. 2 (2013), 322.

39 Lise Herslund, Dorthe Hedensted Lund, Gertrud Jørgensen, Patience Mguni, Wilbard J. Kombe, and Kumelachew Yeshitela, “Towards Climate Change Resilient Cities in Africa – Initiating Adaptation in Dar es Salaam and Addis Ababa,” in Urban Vulnerability and Climate Change in Africa: A Multidisciplinary Approach, edited by Stephan Pauleit, Adrien Coly, Sandra Fohlmeister, Paolo Gasparini, Gertrud Jørgensen, Sigrun Kabisch, Wilbard J. Kombe, Sarah Lindley, Ingo Simonis, and Kumelachew Yeshitela (Cham, Switzerland: Springer, 2015), 319; see also United Republic of Tanzania, National Climate Change Strategy (Dar es Salaam: The Vice President’s Office, 2012).

40 Kiunsi, “The Constraints on Climate Change Adaptation,” 331.

41 Kiunsi, “The Constraints on Climate Change Adaptation,” 335; Rugai and Kassenga, “Climate Change Impacts.”

42 Silvia Macchi and Liana Ricci, “Mainstreaming Adaptation into Urban Development and Environmental Management Planning: A Literature Review and Lessons from Tanzania,” in Climate Change Vulnerability in Southern African Cities, edited by Silvia Macchi and Maurizio Tiepolo (Cham, Switzerland: Springer, 2014): 116–117.

43 UN Habitat, The State of African Cities 2010: Governance, Inequality and Urban Land Markets and State of African Cities 2014: Re-imagining Sustainable Urban Transitions, Nairobi: UN Habitat.

44 Government of Kenya, Nairobi Metro 2030: A World Class African Metropolis (Nairobi: Ministry of Nairobi Metropolitan Development, Republic of Kenya, 2008).

45 Tatiana Thieme, “‘Youth are Redrawing the Map’: Temporalities and Terrains of the Hustle Economy in Mathare, Nairobi,” Africa 91, no. 1 (2021): 35–56.

46 Kefa Otiso, “Forced Evictions in Kenyan Cities,” Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography 23, no. 2 (2002): 252–67.

47 Helene Charton-Bigot, “Preface,” in Nairobi Today: The Paradox of a Fragmented City, edited by Helene Charton-Bigot and Deyssi Rodrigues-Torres, Dar es Salaam: Mkuki na Nyota Publishers, 2010, ix–xii; Rose Gatabaki-Kamau and Sarah Karirah-Gitau, “Actors and Interests: The Development of an Informal Settlement in Nairobi, Kenya,” in Reconsidering Informality: Perspectives from Urban Africa, edited by Karen Hansen and Mariken Vaa, Uppsala: Nordic Africa Institute, 2004, 158–75; Andrew Hake, African Metropolis: Nairobi’s Self-Help City (London: Sussex University Press, 1977); Ambreena Manji, “Property, Conservation, and Enclosure in Karura Forest, Nairobi,” African Affairs 116/463 (2017): 186–205; Ambreena Manji, “Bulldozers, Homes and Highways: Nairobi and the Right to the City,” Review of African Political Economy 42, no. 2 (2015): 206–24; Claire Médard, “City Planning in Nairobi: The Stakes, the People, the Sidetracking,” in Nairobi Today: The Paradox of a Fragmented City, edited by Helene Charton-Bigot and Deyssi Rodrigues-Torres (Dar es Salaam: Mkuki na Nyota Publishers, 2010), 25–60; Godwin Murunga, and Shadrack Nasong’o, “Bent on Self-Destruction: The Kibaki Regime in Kenya,” Journal of Contemporary African Studies 24 (2006): 1–28; and Sameul Owuor and Teresa Mbatia, “Nairobi,” in Capital Cities in Africa: Power and Powerlessness, edited by Simon Bekker and Goran Therborn (Cape Town: HSRC Press, 2012): 120–40.

48 Garth Myers, African Cities: Alternative Visions of Urban Theory and Practice (London: Zed Books, 2011).

49 Bob Hendriks, “City-Wide Governance Networks in Nairobi: Towards Contributions to Political Rights, Influence and Service Delivery for Poor and Middle-class Citizens?,” Habitat International 34 (2010): 59–77.

50 Marie Huchzermeyer, Tenement Cities: From 19th Century Berlin to 21st Century Nairobi (Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press, 2011), 236.

51 Economist Intelligence Unit, African Green Cities Index: Assessing the Environmental Performance of Africa’s Major Cities (Munich: Siemens AG, 2011), 83.

52 Jacqueline Klopp, “Towards a Political Economy of Transportation Policy and Practice in Nairobi,” Urban Forum 23 (2012): 1–21; Garth Myers, “A World-Class City Region? Envisioning the Nairobi of 2030,” American Behavioral Scientist 59, no. 3 (2015): 328–46; Peter Ngau, For Town and Country: A New Approach to Urban Planning in Kenya (London: Africa Research Institute, 2013); and Constance Smith, Nairobi in the Making: Landscapes of Time & Urban Belonging (Rochester: Boydell and Brewer, 2019).

53 John Gendall, “Kibera Public Space Project by Kounkuey Design Initiative: Co-Designing Productive Parks with the Poorest of Kibera, Kenya,” Harvard Design Magazine 28 (2008): 67–69.

54 Myers, “A World-Class City-Region?,” 333.

55 John Burugu, The County: Understanding Devolution and Governance in Kenya (Nairobi: CLEAD International, 2010).

56 Garth Myers, Urban Environments in Africa: A Critical Analysis of Environmental Politics (Bristol, UK: Policy Press, 2016).

57 Ngau, For Town and Country, 17.

58 Myers, Urban Environments in Africa, 152 and 166–67.

59 Smith Ouma, “Managing the City like the Military,” Africa is a Country blogpost, May 26, 2021, https://africasacountry.com/2021/05.

60 Collins Omulo, “Ousted Governor Sonko Says Impeachment was Rigged,” Nation (Nairobi), December 20, 2020, https://nation.africa/kenya/counties/nairobi/ousted-governor-sonko-says-impeachment-was-rigged-3218292; and Ouma, “Managing the City Like the Military.”

61 Collins Omulo, “The Nairobi Governor’s By-Election that Never was,” Nation (Nairobi), February 18, 2021, https://nation.africa/kenya/counties/nairobi/the-nairobi-governor-s-by-election-that-neverwas-3295992.

62 Cirolia and Berrisford, “Negotiated Planning,” 75. 

63 Jeremia Njeru, “The Urban Political Ecology of Plastic Bag Waste Problems in Nairobi, Kenya,” Geoforum, 37 (2006): 1054–55.

64 Hendriks, “City-Wide Governance Networks,” 70 and 73.

65 Winnie Mitullah, “Decentralized Urban Service Delivery in Nairobi: Institutional Issues and Challenges,” Regional Development Dialogue 29, no. 2 (2008): 66.

66 Joe Mulligan, Vera Bukachi, Jack Campbell Clause, Rosie Jewell, Franklin Kirimi, and Chelina Odbert, “Hybrid Infrastructures, Hybrid Governance: New Evidence from Nairobi (Kenya) on GreenBlue-Grey Infrastructure in Informal Settlements,” Anthropocene 29 (2020): 2.

67 Chelina Odbert and Joe Mulligan, “The Kibera Public Space Project: Participation, Integration, and Networked Change,” in Now Urbanism: the Future City is Here, edited by J. Hou, B. Spencer, T. Way and K. Yocum (New York, NY: Routledge, 2014), 178.

68 Mulligan et al., “Hybrid Infrastructures, Hybrid Governance,” 2.

69 Mulligan, et al., “Hybrid Infrastructures, Hybrid Governance,” 14–15; and Odbert and Mulligan, “The Kibera Public Space Project,” 177–92.

70 Jessica Thorn, Thomas F. Thornton, and Ariella Helfgott, “Autonomous Adaptation to Global Environmental Change in Peri-Urban Settlements: Evidence of a Growing Culture of Innovation and Revitalization in Mathare Valley Slums, Nairobi,” Global Environmental Change 31 (2015): 128; Center for Urban Research and Innovations (CURI), Mukuru kwa Njenga Upgrading Plan (Nairobi: University of Nairobi Center for Urban Research and Innovations, 2014), 1.

71 Joy Mboya, “Nai ni Who? (Who is Nairobi?): Collective Urban Vision Development,” in Visionary Urban Africa: Built Environment and Cultural Spaces for Democracy, edited by Centre for Fine Arts, Brussels (BOZAR) (Brussels: BOZAR, 2014), 66–71; Horn, “Enabling Participatory Planning.”

72 Romanus Otieno Opiyo, “Planning and Climate Change in Nairobi,” in Water and Climate Change in Africa: Challenges and Community Initiatives in Durban, Maputo and Nairobi, edited by Patricia Perkins (New York: Routledge, 2013), 71.

73 Sadique Bilal Issa, “Kilimanjaro Initiative Working with Youth in Nairobi,” in Water and Climate Change in Africa: Challenges and Community Initiatives in Durban, Maputo and Nairobi, edited by Patricia Perkins (New York: Routledge, 2013), 30.

74 http://www.dcc.go.tz; https://nairobi.go.ke. The contrasts are striking in very many ways between these websites, from imagery to interactive features to functionality.