Slum Rules (2/5)
Slum Rules (2/5)
Don’t move slumdwellers to the outside edge of the city.
This has never seemed to work, even though governments around the world repeatedly use this strategy. It’s bad for slumdwellers and bad for the city.
Keep slumdwellers in the city.
Improve their quality of living where they’re at whenever possible and integrate them in pockets throughout the city, keeping them in proximity to the jobs that have emerged for them. The economic element was already naturally working, people are flowing into the city because the economy is emerging and their contributions help further grow that economy. It’s good for them and good for the city.
Don’t be mean.
Treat them as you would want your own family to be treated.
Understand their dreams.
You have them too. We can’t truly understand others without understanding their dreams.
Understand their similarities.
They’re not that different than you and I in what they hope for their futures and the futures of their children. Usually, there is a positive correlation between the extend we facilitate their hopes and the extent we benefit as a city.
Understand their differences.
Slums aren’t a blight on our cities. Slumdwellers aren’t a blight on our societies. They are assets. They have value. Understand what unique strengths they can add to our cities and societies.
Dignity is important.
Slumdwellers want and need a hand in their own development. They aren’t second class citizens.
Partner into the better future.
It’s not an outsiders vs insiders dilemma on who should solve the challenges. Both have value. Both need the other. Do it together. Show up respect and add what you have to offer. Receive what they have to offer.
Blend formal/informal hybrid systems.
Don’t force them to immediately adopt the formal regulations and systems that have evolved (and devolved) over time in the formal city. This will kill their chance at transitioning over time.
Take a vertically integrated approach.
Understand that both slums and cities are organisms and made up of many working parts. Do what you can to integrate the key pieces.