John Abbott's research while affiliated with University of Cape Town and other places

Publications (5)

Article
The Urban Geographical Information Systems (GIS) Group within the Department of Civil Engineering at the University of Cape Town has been coordinating a pilot informal settlement upgrading in Cape Town since 1998. The project objective has been the evolution of a model-based approach to informal settlement upgrading that is both structured and repl...
Article
Informal settlements house a significant percentage of the population of developing cities, yet there is no common planning framework for upgrading these settlements. Conventional method-based approaches applicable to new areas or sites and services schemes are inappropriate and so the dominant approaches currently available tend to focus on princi...
Article
This paper provides a review of different approaches to informal settlement upgrading. It begins by showing how linking informal settlement upgrading and sites and service provision as twin approaches to development led firstly to a situation where the former was situated within a particular development paradigm and then to an ideological divide be...
Article
Informal settlements provide a major challenge to the effective planning and management of developing cities. A large part of the problem lies in the nature of the informality with respect to the position of both the settlements, and their constituent dwellings, in space. They have no rational framework, and hence can be viewed as ‘holes’ within th...
Article
This paper describes a new planning methodology for the comprehensive upgrading of informal settlements in-situ . This uses a variety of spatial imaging and data capture techniques to link different components of the upgrading process together, thereby providing a basis for replicability. It is based upon a system which was first developed in Brazi...

Citations

... The methodology used in data collection ( Figure 2) incorporated those of Abbot (2000); Karanja (2010), and Tyler (2011), whereby data collected consist of two main parts: capturing the social information from the communities using a questionnaire and capturing the spatial information using GIS. Households were interviewed across the settlement while social information was subsequently recorded in a spreadsheet. ...
... On the bright side, this approach to the physical environment has served to strengthen social cohesion, and its impacts on the residents have enhanced a sense of belonging. These benefits cover both physical and socioeconomic improvements and will potentially contribute to successful settlement transformation (Abbott, 2002). ...
... Urban policies and strategies often exclude informal settlements, although arguably these should be considered alongside formal settlements when formulating long-term city development plans and generating solutions for people's needs (UN-Habitat, 2008). Abbott (2001) reported that over time, informal settlements develop their own infrastructures, local economy, and local rules; once this has occurred, particular strategies are needed to address the situation. Following Dovey (2013, p. 86) "slum is a symptom of poverty; informality is a transgressive practice through which residents manage the conditions of poverty". ...
... Since the 1960s, several strategies and policies worldwide have tackled the problems of informal urbanization through various approaches that range from the eradication of informal settlements and rehousing the people, most likely in public or social housing, to establishing programs focusing on tenure legalization, infrastructure improvements, and facilitation of credit to encourage self-help housing and socioeconomic development [12][13][14]. ...
... The effective use of open data sources and open software gives a significant contribution to urban studies in general and for addressing the problems of informal settlements in the Global South. Initiatives of collaborative mapping are important not only for producing up-to-date geospatial data for planning purposes but also for their participatory nature, involving local citizens in bottom-up activities that can benefit the whole community (Abbott 2003). ...