A Synthesis of Determinants of Urban Resilience in Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Oriangi George
Part of the Climate Change Management book series (CCM)


Urban resilience to natural and human-induced shocks and stresses has become an important issue in the contemporary world. Several reviews exist on urban resilience, but limited attempts have been made to critically review studies that shed light on determinants of urban resilience in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). This study synthesizes both peer-reviewed and grey literature on the determinants of urban resilience to natural and human-induced shocks and stresses in SSA. A considerable number of studies that shed some light on the determinants of urban resilience in SSA have been conducted since the year 2000, but limited attempts have been made to synthesize and integrate them into the pool of knowledge. In this study, the preferred reporting items for systematic reviews and meta-analysis (PRISMA) protocol was followed. Findings indicate that urban resilience in SSA is understood, firstly, as a social and organizational construct and, secondly, as a social, organizational, and ecological construct. The most reported determinants of resilience in cities of SSA are access to basic services, social networks, employment, ownership of productive assets, involvement in none-agricultural activities, building flood retention facilities, and environmental preservation. In conclusion, necessity exists to conduct more studies in secondary cities in SSA while considering the social, institutional, economic, and ecological aspects of resilience so as to understand the multidimensional, location-specific dynamics of the determinants of resilience, given the growing role that secondary cities will play in the strong urban growth trajectories projected over the next decades.


Urban resilience Determinants Sub-Saharan Africa Shocks Stresses 



This book chapter represents the views of the named author only. The guide, motivation, and supervision from Assoc. Prof. Yazidhi Bamutaze, Prof. Petter Pilesjö, Assoc. Prof. Jonas Ardö, and Prof. Giuliano Di Baldassarre are acknowledged. The author also acknowledges the generous funding provided by Makerere-SIDA bilateral program phase IV (2015–2020) under the Building Resilient Ecosystems and Livelihoods to Climate Change and Disasters Risks (BREAD) project, grant number: 331 in the Department of Geography, Geo-Informatics and Climatic Sciences at Makerere University in Uganda in collaboration with Lund, and Uppsala Universities in Sweden. The project has provided funding for my university fees, travels, fieldwork activities and the living allowance for my PhD studies.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Oriangi George
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Geography, Geo-Informatics and Climatic SciencesMakerere UniversityKampalaUganda
  2. 2.Department of GeographyGulu UniversityGuluUganda
  3. 3.Department of Physical Geography and Ecosystems ScienceLund UniversityLundSweden

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