Urban Politics in the Global South

We are pleased to announce a first, online workshop designed to bring together the growing community of political scientists conducting research on urban politics in the Global South. This workshop, sponsored by the APSA Urban and Local Politics section and the Global Metropolitan Studies program at U.C. Berkeley, aims to facilitate exchange among those contributing to our understanding of cities in low- and middle-income countries in different world regions. We invite submissions from across a variety of thematic areas, such as social protest, law & order, campaigns and elections, and public service delivery in cities.

To capture the array of exciting work currently being conducted in the field, the workshop will include two types of discussion formats. It will include lightning talks (5-minute presentations), as well as discussions of full-length papers. Participants will be expected to read the papers in advance of the workshop and come prepared to discuss them; paper submissions should therefore be very polished, whereas lightning talk are appropriate for research projects that may be at earlier stages. The workshop will also include some networking sessions.

Dates: October 27th and 28th, 2022 (Noon - 3pm, EST)

Format: Online



The sessions will run for three hours over two days, October 27th and 28th, 12 noon – 3pm EST/9am – 12 noon PST. The program is below, and you must register above to receive access to the paper and registration link. Note that registered attendees are expected to read the papers in advance.

Thursday 10/27 (times in EST)

12:00 noon - 1:15pm: “Pressing Issues in Cities of the Global South: What Type of Research is Needed?”

Plenary panel featuring Maitreyi Bordia Das, World Bank; Taibat Lawanson, University of Lagos; Eduardo Marques, University of São Paulo; Danielle Resnick, Brookings

Chair: Alison Post, UC Berkeley

1:15pm - 1:30pm: Break

1:30pm - 3:00pm: Paper Discussions

Suruchi Kumari (JNU), “The twin tales of exception and continuity: zoning governance and elite urban politics in Industrial Model Townships in India”; Discussant: Emily Rains, Louisiana State University

Katrin Hofer (ETH Zurich), “The people’s perspective of public participation in infrastructure and housing provision in South Africa: evidence from a factorial survey experiment”; Discussant: Brian Wampler, Boise State University

Shiqi Ma (Cornell), “Politicization of Slum Demolition: Evidence from the Satellite Image of Beijing”; Discussant: Kyle Jaros, Notre Dame

Jessica Zarkin (Claremont McKenna); “Who Governs Policing? Mayors’ Strategic Linkages to Police in Latin American Cities” Discussant: Jessie Trudeau, Syracuse

Chair: Jeffrey Paller, University of Gothenburg

Friday, 10/28 (times in EST)

12:00 noon - 1:00pm: Paper Discussions

Marcela Alonso Ferreira (Sciences Po), “The politics of urban land rights: documents, courts, and constituencies in São Paulo”; Discussant: Rebecca Weitz-Shapiro, Brown

Erum Haider (The College of Wooster), “Votes for Water: Hybrid Water Provision, Illegality, and Ethnicity in Karachi, Pakistan”; Discussant: Noah Nathan, MIT

Wara Urwasi (Northwestern), “Land, Leaders, and Linkages: Community Distinction and Informal Governance in Jakarta’s Democratic Setting”; Discussant: Adam Auerbach, AU

Chair: Veronica Herrera, UCLA

1:00pm - 1:15pm: Break

1:15pm - 2:45pm: Lightning Talks

Jessie Trudeau (Brown) "Strategic Cartography: How Map-Making Can Enable or Obstruct Social Inclusion"

Karen Buscher (University of Ghent) “Militarisation and urban politics in Eastern Congo"

Andrea Junqueira (Washington University, St Louis) "How do Mega Cities Decentralize Local Representation? Precinct-Level Voting Behavior and Municipal Service Provision"

Kyle Jaros (Notre Dame) "Fragmented or Fused Urban Governance? Special Zones and Authority Relations in China"

Sohyeon Kim (Ohio State) "Urbanization and the Decay of Ethnic Orientation: Evidence from Nairobi, Kenya"

Noah Nathan (MIT) "Explaining Urban Order: The Political Origins of Africa’s City Street Networks"

Emily Rains (Louisiana State University) "An evolving threat to life and livelihoods: comparing the health, economic, and political implications of the first two waves of COVID-19 in Bengaluru and Patna slums"

Ivan Souza Vieira (CIDE) "Bridging the Gap? Inclusionary Public Transportation Policies in Latin American Megacities"

Alice Xu (Yale) "The Political Origins of Slum Growth and Segregation in Cities"

Salih Yasun (Indiana University) "The Challenges of Local Taxation under Transition Settings: The Case Study of Tunisia"

Chair: Adam Auerbach, American University

2:45pm-3:00pm Concluding thoughts and discussion

Feel free to email Tanu Kumar with any questions.


Adam Auerbach

Veronica Herrera

Tanu Kumar

Jeffrey Paller

Eleonora Pasotti

Alison Post

Header photo: Adam Auerbach