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Citation Information

Type Working Paper
Title Pathways to urban transformation in South Africa – The case of the City of Johannesburg and Polokwane
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2018
South Africa is 64% urbanised and growing more so, with cities growing at approximately 2% per annum, largely due to international migration and people moving from rural areas in search of employment and better standards of living. This paper, by looking through the lens of selected projects in the Cities of Johannesburg Polokwane, examines the extent to which urban transformation has taken place, and where the challenges and opportunities lie in taking a sustainable and equitable energy transition to new levels. This would create a new future that is equitable and provides sustainable livelihoods for all, while taking into account a healthy environment. Considerable work and change is taking place within the two case study cities and impacting the green economy, albeit at a small scale. Both cities are addressing the issues of livelihood opportunities, providing access to modern energy services for the poor and building equity and participation in energy transitions. Moreover, there is evidence of substantial change across the municipal landscape beyond the two study cities, with many projects are being implemented, including those with strategies and frameworks in place and with remarkable champions advancing the cause. The challenge lies in the cities being able to adopt a more holistic or sustainable transformation approach to take these innovations to scale.

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Copyright DataFirst, University of Cape Town