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Against the Odds: Slum Rehabilitation in Neoliberal Mumbai

Published By : Department of Geography and Regional Studies, University of Miami | Publish Date : 01 Apr, 2008

In urban India, slum policies have become increasingly reliant on the market and on local ‘self-help’ agencies, a trend in step with the neoliberal turn across the developing world. The emphasis on local solutions is particularly interesting because the challenge of urban slums is now widely acknowledged to be one of global proportions. This paper examines the impact of this changing institutional environment on slum rehabilitation efforts in Mumbai. It provides an overview of Mumbai’s slums and slum policies and it presents a case study of a rehabilitation project in Ganesh Nagar D, a small community in the southern part of the city. While the case of Ganesh Nagar D appears a striking success, it is shown that it was only in part based in new policy schemes and that it in fact violated some of the main tenets of neoliberal policies. It is concluded that some new opportunities for rehabilitation strategies have arisen but that the fundamental conditions of neoliberalism in urban India are unlikely to be conducive to large-scale successes.

Link : http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0264275108000188

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