Graph of the Week


From The Economist in October 2012 (via Rachel Strom)

I haven’t studied urbanization for it’s own sake, although I almost always include a measure of urbanization in my analysis. The backward sloping arrows for Zimbabwe, Madagascar, and Liberia have piqued my interest, but is the answer simply that conflict is bad for growth?

On a related note, could it be the case that urbanization only increase GDP per capita if people move to the cities for actual jobs, not theoretical jobs / to escape from rural life?  Rapid urbanization when there aren’t jobs could only lead to an increase in slum dwellers, where the quality of living will rarely be better than before.



Link Roundup

African urban spaces may be expanding rapidly, but in many mainland countries growth in urban populations hardly outstripped national population growth in the 1990s and 2000s. Data for 18 countries collected and analysed by Dr Potts and others shows that urbanisation levels declined in 4 countries, and stagnated or increased very slowly in a further 10. Only four countries – Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Tanzania and Kenya – experienced rapid urbanisation.

  • Awkward… ‘If Mugabe is the only invitee who turns up in person at your party, you have a problem. (Kabila’s Inauguration in the DRC)