You are not currently logged in.

Access JSTOR through your library or other institution:


Log in through your institution.

Journal Article

Informal Networks and Access to Power to Obtain Housing in Urban Slums in Ghana

Jeffrey W. Paller
Africa Today
Vol. 62, No. 1, Special Issue: The Politics of the Nonstate Provision of Public Goods in Africa (Fall 2015), pp. 31-55
Published by: Indiana University Press
DOI: 10.2979/africatoday.62.1.31
Stable URL:
Page Count: 26
Were these topics helpful?
See something inaccurate? Let us know!

Select the topics that are inaccurate.

  • Download ($15.00)
  • Add to My Lists
  • Cite this Item
Informal Networks and Access to Power to Obtain Housing in Urban Slums in Ghana
Preview not available


Scholarship that examines obtaining housing in urban Ghana focuses on the role of state planning or access to financial markets, yet most housing in Ghana is provided outside these official channels, often in urban slums, where residents turn to nonstate providers (NSPs) to find housing. NSPs are local social networks led by political entrepreneurs motivated by informal norms and incentives, which shape the quality of housing and security of tenure. Their logic is best represented by treating the governance of housing as a collective action problem. This article introduces a typology of slums based on settlement patterns, including extralegal, indigenous, and purchased settlements. Ethnographic research and survey data illustrate the governance of housing across these types of Ghanaian informal settlements.

Page Thumbnails

Part of Sustainability