Urban violence is an increasingly significant global phenomenon. Over the past few years, a conventional wisdom has emerged within policy and research circles associating it with four key factors: poverty; youthful populations; the failure to consider women’s safety as a specific concern; and the local-level absence of the state. Taken together, these different factors have underpinned a range of policy interventions in a variety of contexts.
Poor people’s lack of voice and influence are globally recurring themes their own accounts of their poverty, and are indicative of their wider political disempowerment. This project evaluates attempts to tackle this core element of poverty through local governance reform. Its central research question is: to what extent do participatory initiatives within local governance enhance poor people’s opportunities for political empowerment?