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Title: Cartographic calculation and coordination in the urbanisation of the peripheral slopes of Lima
Author: Lambert, Rita
ISNI:       0000 0004 7661 1625
Awarding Body: UCL (University College London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2019
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The urbanisation of the peripheral slopes of Lima is often referred to in official discourse and the media as an informal/illegal process driven exclusively by the urban poor. However, a close examination of such process defies its understanding as occurring beyond the State, in violation of planning laws, or in the exclusive domain of the poor's agency. Instead close engagements with regulatory frameworks and spatial outcomes compliant with planning norms are central features, since such practices shape local dwellers' entitlements to basic services, as well as their expectations on securing tenure. Notwithstanding that the slopes have been declared uninhabitable high-risk zones by the State, their occupation is occurring at an unprecedented rate, exposing an increasing number of inhabitants to hazardous living conditions. The thesis examines how and why this mode of urbanisation is enabled and sustained. In so doing, it offers analytical and methodological insights into contemporary urbanisation processes across the Global South. Borrowing from actor-network theory and institutional ethnography, the research takes a relational and socio-material perspective. It focuses on cartography - the maps and plans used on the slopes of Lima- to provide a transversal reading across 'black boxed' actors such as the 'State, 'communities' and 'land traffickers', and observe the engagement with the regulatory frameworks. Through an ethnography of cartographic practices, the thesis provides a novel methodology for bringing into view the processes, practices, alliances, and agency which are often invisible to policy makers, yet structure outcomes. The thesis demonstrates that peripheral urbanisation and planning need to be considered as socio-technical assemblages that have numerous and unexpected ways of interlinking. Unintended consequences, such as the production of risk, are outcomes of these assemblages. Consequently, planning research could do more to consider the technical as much as the political aspects of planning and interrogate the agency of materiality in urban processes. For policy makers and planners, a better understanding of the socio-technical configurations can guide their actions to rearrange these toward progressive agendas.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available