UCL Institute for Risk and Disaster Reduction


Mark Ojal

Mark Ojal
Supervisor: Mark Pelling and Cassidy Johnson
Funding: UCL IRDR Departmental studentship
Email: m.ojal@ucl.ac.uk


Rethinking the city in a multi-hazard resilience context

Urbanisation presents a time-limited opportunity to build widespread transformative adaptation and climate resilience into urban development planning and decision-making, effectively addressing both development and risk issues. In the same context, inclusive urban regeneration decision-making provides scope for reducing vulnerability and disaster risk in tomorrow’s cities, especially in urban poor settlements. However, this opportunity window in Sub-Saharan Africa is constrained by limited knowledge; financial and institutional incapacities; and weak governance at the city level to plan and manage rapid urban growth and reduce risk. An arising question is: How does decision-making in pro-poor urban regeneration contribute to inclusive disaster risk management?

This research aims to understand how relationships between institutions and actors involved in urban regeneration contribute to urban risks in urban poor settlements. The intellectual puzzle that it addresses is a processual one. It seeks to illuminate the processes of urban change in Nairobi, especially the ways in which urban regeneration decision-making is negotiated, how institutions change, interact with organisations, agency and other institutions, and implications on risks, and how these become new inputs.