The turn of the century has been a moment of rapid urbanization. Much of this urban growth is taking place in the cities of the developing world and much of it in informal settlements. This book presents cutting-edge research from various world regions to demonstrate these trends. The contributions reveal that informal housing is no longer the domain of the urban poor; rather it is a significant zone of transactions for the middle-class and even transnational elites. Indeed, the book presents a rich view of "urban informality" as a system of regulations and norms that governs the use of space and makes possible new forms of social and political power. The book is organized as a "transnational" endeavor. It brings together three regional domains of research-the Middle East, Latin America, and South Asia-that are rarely in conversation with one another. It also unsettles the hierarchy of development and underdevelopment by looking at some First World processes of informality through a Third World research lens.
About the Author
Ananya Roy is Assistant Professor in the Department of City and Regional Planning at the University of California at Berkeley. Nezar AlSayyad is Chair of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies and Professor of Architecture and Planning at the University of California at Berkeley. He is the author or editor of eight books, including Muslim Europe or Euro-Islam: Politics, Culture, and Citizenship in the Age of Globalization (Lexington Books, 2002).