Engaging with and measuring informality in the proposed Urban Sustainable Development Goal
Journal article, 2017

A unique project by Mistra Urban Futures to test the draft targets and indicators of the proposed Urban Sustainable Development Goal (Goal 11) in five diverse cities in Europe, Africa, and Asia revealed numerous complexities and differences in data availability, potential accessibility, and relevance. Deploying the findings from Kisumu and Cape Town, we highlight the particular challenges posed by widespread urban informality. Similar issues apply across the global South. The targets and indicators rely on official/formal data, which are often of questionable reliability and exclude unregulated activities. The particularly problematic conceptualization of the slum/informal settlements indicator is examined in depth, along with indicators on transport and waste management. © 2016 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.

Urban Sustainable Development Goal


urban transport

waste disposal


tenure security


Helen Arfvidsson

University of Gothenburg

Mistra Urban Futures

David Simon

Mistra Urban Futures

University of Gothenburg

Michael Oloko

Jaramogi Oginga Odinga University of Science & Technology

Nishendra Moodley

Palmer Development Group

African Geographical Review

1937-6812 (ISSN)

Vol. 36 1 100-114

Driving Forces

Sustainable development

Areas of Advance

Building Futures (2010-2018)


Subject Categories

Environmental Sciences related to Agriculture and Land-use

Renewable Bioenergy Research

Environmental Engineering

Other Natural Sciences



More information

Latest update

9/6/2018 1