Collective Action and Urban Poverty Alleviation: Community Organizations and the Struggle for Shelter in Manila, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Collective Action and Urban Poverty Alleviation

Community Organizations and the Struggle for Shelter in Manila, 1st Edition

By Gavin Shatkin


184 pages

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An estimated 600 million people now live in informal or 'squatter' settlements in the rapidly growing cities of the developing world. With such settlements often lacking basic necessities, there is an urgent need to address this urban crisis. Recently, innovative approaches have focused on the role of community-based organizations (CBOs) in setting up self-help and participatory programmes. This incisive book questions whether communities have the ability to organize, engage government and undertake major redevelopment. It also examines when and how mobilization of communities occurs and if such organizations possess any influence in the intensely political decision-making arena of urban land development. It is illustrated by a detailed analysis of the experience of CBOs in Manila, as the Philippine government has undertaken what is perhaps the most radical experiment in decentralized, participatory approaches to urban governance in the world. The book emphasizes the external conditions that influence patterns of collective action within communities and addresses issues such as the local political economy and the communities' place within the global economy.


'How effective are neighborhood participation and citizen organizing as tools of development? The perfect test may be in Manila, which exploded with organizations after the collapse of the Marcos dictatorship in 1986. Anyone wondering about limits to local democracy - in poor neighborhoods anywhere - should read this thorough study.' William W. Goldsmith, Director, Cornell University, USA

About the Author

Dr Gavin Shatkin is Assistant Professor at the Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning, University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, USA.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Anthropology / General