The Urbanisation Construction Migration Nexus in 5 Cities in South Asia


March 2016

The Urbanisation Construction Migration Nexus in 5 Cities in South Asia

This report is the outcome of a research project on the urbanisation-construction-migration nexus in five cities in South Asia (UCMn SA): Kabul (Afghanistan), Dhaka (Bangladesh), Chennai (India), Kathmandu (Nepal) and Lahore (Pakistan). The UCMnpSA makes a contribution to the urbanisation and migration literature by linking the emergent power of urban consumption and investment (referred to here as ‘new forces’ as a proxy for urbanisation), with the demand for rural migrant ‘contract’ construction labour (referred to here as a ‘resurgent’ form of internal rural to urban migration, expressed by the term ‘transient’ migrants); facilitated by two types of large-scale urban construction projects – ‘civil’ (residential, commercial, industrial and institutional) – and ‘infrastructure’.

The overarching research question is: How do investments in large-scale urban construction and the demand for labour generated, give rise to varied forms of migration?

Client: DFID’s South Asia Research Hub, New Delhi, India

Authors: Dr Sunil Kumar & Dr Melissa Fernandez

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