- Urban insecurity in the globalization: the violent Nairobi    click here to open paper content359 kb
by    Proto, Brigida | ingurbec@ngweb.it   click here to send an email to the auther(s) of this paper
Short Outline
Looking at cities as both places of economic valuation and social devaluation, the Nairobi case study faces the linkages between globalization and urban insecurity. A glocal perspective emerges as the way to defend urban diversity when security privatisation, social exclusion and extremely-organized cultures of violence have become transnationally-shared urban issues.
The case study focuses on:
1. The relationship between production and use of knowledge
2. The relationship between social exclusion, violence, power and innovative forms of citizenship
3. The meaning of cities as places where distortions of induced by economic development both explode visibly and regenerate themselves secretly

Abstract- Urban insecurity in the globalization: the violent Nairobi

There is a strong correlation between globalization and urban insecurity.
On the one hand, the former makes the change be a permanent condition of social experience both in developed and developing countries. On the other hand, the latter, beyond the visible, seems to arise from the perceived “loss of stability” and the accentuated processes of “individual adaptation” as reaction to institutional decentralization.
Victimization surveys are one of the current assessment tools for the diagnosis of urban insecurity adopted by Safer Cities Programme at UN-HABITAT in Nairobi (Kenya): doubts emerge on the adequacy of their cultural background to catch the multidimensional nature of cities.
My contribution, as fieldwork in the framework of the Master “Urban and Regional Planning in Developing Countries” (IUAV-Venice), can be looked at as a provisional product of the Safer Cities Team effort to make an inherited crime preventive approach turn into an innovative urban management one through the assessment of “Crime in Nairobi: results of a citywide victim survey”(2001), the official Nairobi victim survey supported by Safer Cities Programme and managed by the School of Development Studies at the University of Natal (South Africa).
The Nairobi case study can give rise to a reflection on the emerging issues. First, it makes the a-critical and self-referential application of western models - as victimization surveys often are - on urban development issues emerge. Secondly, it faces socio-cultural diversity and multidimensional insecurity when urban morphologies change and cities risk to be assaulted by the sprawl of urban violent cultures. Finally, it attempts to cope with the strategic role of cities in the globalization when they can be looked at as both places of valorization of capital and de-valorization of already marginalized social contexts.
Urban insecurity
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