Browsing by Author "Smit, Suzanne"
Now showing 1 - 6 of 6
Results Per Page
- ItemConnecting the urban informal settlement to the city : a system dynamics approach(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2019-01) Smit, Suzanne; Musango, Josephine Kaviti; Brent, Alan C.; Kovacic, Zora; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences. School of Public Leadership.ENGLISH SUMMARY : Understanding increasing urbanisation and the proliferation of slums requires a holistic scrutiny of the metabolism of cities. However, existing urban metabolic analyses exclude a detailed grasp of how urban slums function and contribute to the metabolism of cities. Furthermore, conventional urban metabolism analytical methods are not suited to capturing informal flows and processes that contribute to urban resource use. This study therefore investigated the questions: i) What are urban informal settlements and how do they connect to the broader urban context? and ii) How does a Multi-scale Integrated Assessment of the Societal and Ecosystem Metabolism (MuSIASEM) approach contribute to the study of informal settlements in the context of sustainable urban development? The first question was addressed through a critical literature review which provided the global perspective and understanding of slums. A conceptual framework was developed for classifying urban slums based on physical and legal characteristics, forming the basis upon which different slum types may be analysed. In applying the typology to South Africa, it was found to exhibit a more nuanced typology, where five distinguishable settlement types were established. However, to achieve sustainable urban development, it is argued that urban informal settlements also need to be analysed from a metabolic perspective. The study then focused on one particular slum type, using the case study of Enkanini informal settlement in Stellenbosch, and applied MuSIASEM to address question two and to demonstrate that the societal metabolic dimension of the settlement can be quantified in terms of the use of time, money and energy. The results highlight issues to be addressed through spatial, developmental and local economic policy, such as the need for improved transport linkages. Furthermore, the MuSIASEM results highlighted issues related to the introduction of a renewable energy solution, in the form of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, to address energy access. This led to the emergence of a third research question: What are the electricity legitimacy dynamics of Enkanini informal settlement? While it is argued that MuSIASEM is a suitable approach for analysing the metabolic dimension of slums, it does not account for sociopolitical dynamics that influence the metabolic dimension. The study therefore further used Community Based System Dynamics to investigate the electricity legitimacy dynamics in the Enkanini informal settlement. Several causal relationships between the factors that affect energy fuel choice and energy access in Enkanini were found, resulting in 17 feedback loops. The use of Community Based System Dynamics modelling identified the root cause of the resistance to solar PV energy as threatening residents’ struggle for legitimacy. The key feedback loops related to community empowerment and representation. Finally, this study demonstrates the need for deeper engagement and transparent communication with the residents of informal settlements, and recognition of the non-technical, and aspirational factors that drive their energy behaviours. Whilst the Enkanini case does not deliver a comprehensive set of metabolism results, as an exploratory study into the societal metabolism of slums, it has led to and informed several subsequent studies and contributes to the development and improvement of the method for future cases.
- ItemExploring the connections between green economy and informal economy in South Africa(Academy of Science of South Africa, 2015) Smit, Suzanne; Musango, Josephine K.The notion of an inclusive green economy in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication requires an approach that engages with the informal economy. However, the informal economy is generally ignored or undervalued in discussions on the green economy. This paper set out to bolster this argument by identifying the ways in which the green economy and the informal economy may be connected by establishing the extent to which policies and plans relating to green economy connect with the informal economy, and recognising several informal green activities. The barriers and opportunities for connecting the two spheres were also explored as well as possible ways in which such activities may be supported at different levels of organisation. In the case of South Africa, many informal green activities that contribute to sustainable livelihoods are recognised. However, issues pertaining to procedure, process and participation hinder the transition to a truly inclusive green economy.
- ItemTowards an inclusive green economy for South Africa : engaging with the informal economy(2015-03) Smit, Suzanne; Musango, Josephine Kaviti; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences. Department of School of Public Leadership.
- ItemTowards connecting green economy with informal economy in South Africa : a review and way forward(Elsevier, 2015-08) Smit, Suzanne; Musango, Josephine K.; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences. School of Public Leadership.The informal economy is a vibrant and growing phenomenon, offering both opportunities and lessons on resilience and innovation. When considering global social, economic and environmental challenges, resilience and innovation are valuable response strategies. The notion of a green economy has similarly inspired a number of ideological, geopolitical and institutional responses, yet a review of the dominant approach indicates the propensity to undervalue or ignore the informal economy. Within the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication, connecting the informal economy with the green economy is imperative. This paper explores possible connections between the green economy and the informal economy in South Africa and argues that by engaging the informal economy in discussions on the green economy, a more informed policy and planning environment may ensue, resulting in more socially equitable and environmentally sustainable development.
- ItemTowards measuring the informal city : a societal metabolism approach(Wiley, 2018) Smit, Suzanne; Musango, Josephine K.; Kovacic, Zora; Brent, Alan C.The rapid growth of urban informal settlements or slums, poses a particular challenge for balancing developmental and environmental goals. In South Africa, high levels of inequality, poverty and unemployment contribute to widespread migration. The influx of migrant workers to cities however is rarely matched with adequate housing and infrastructure, resulting in the formation and growth of urban informal settlements. Despite the persistence of the slum phenomenon, very few studies provide an in-depth understanding of the metabolic processes that link these spaces, and informal economies, to the broader urban environment and economy. This article therefore utilised a multi-scale integrated assessment of the societal and ecosystem metabolism (MuSIASEM) approach to examine human activity and land use in Enkanini, an urban informal settlement in Stellenbosch, South Africa. The results highlight a number of issues to be addressed through spatial, developmental, and local economic policy such as the need for improved transport linkages. The time use results show that Enkanini is a net provider of labour to the surrounding area. Further, geographic mapping indicates Enkanini as a small, but vibrant, informal economy, whilst being grossly underserviced in terms of water, waste, and sanitation infrastructure. Key implications are discussed in terms of the theoretical, methodological, societal and policy impact of the study, including the need for city observatories that conduct regular data collection and analysis.
- ItemUnderstanding electricity legitimacy dynamics in an urban informal settlement in South Africa : a community based system dynamics approach(Elsevier, 2019) Smit, Suzanne; Musango, Josephine Kaviti; Brent, Alan C.The aim of providing affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy for all requires an in-depth understanding of the issues that affect energy access and energy fuel choice, particularly as related to urban informal settlements or slums. Within unequal societies, such as South Africa, a reliance on technical solutions to address access and inequality is inadequate, leading to resistance and protest. Further, introduction of a technical solution – such as solar PV - to address energy access in urban informal settlements, is a complex process, and requires a systems thinking perspective. Using Community Based System Dynamics modelling, this paper therefore investigated the issues that affect energy fuel choice and energy access as related to the introduction of a renewable energy solution in Enkanini informal settlement. Different energy user groups were engaged in the identification of the factors that affect energy access and energy fuel choice; the relationships between these factors in order to improve future interventions; and development of causal loop diagrams to visualise the key feedback loops. The identified factors were economic and market related such as affordability, availability, and land ownership but also included a range of socio-political aspects. 17 feedback loops emerged, of which 13 were reinforcing loops, and 4 were balancing loops. The key feedback loops relate to community empowerment and representation, whilst participation in the political process and the quest for legitimacy through direct electricity connections were recognised as broader issues to be addressed.