THE ENERGY AND RESOURCES GROUP SPRING 2019 COLLOQUIUM SERIES PRESENTS:
Department of City and Regional Planning
University of California, Berkeley
DATE: Wednesday, March 13, 2019
PLACE: 126 Barrows
TITLE: Countering Infrastructural Violence: Pro-Poor Financing of Water and Sanitation Infrastructure in African Cities
Hundreds of millions residing in urban areas of the developing world do not have access to safely managed drinking water and sanitation services. While policy has largely focused on the financial investments required, other scholars argue the real problem is “infrastructural violence,” a form of indirect violence in which elite decisions about the provisioning and withholding of infrastructure and services have negative consequences for socially vulnerable groups. This talk shares recent evidence from fieldwork in Kenya and Nigeria of these processes at work, examining how new approaches to reform and finance, such as cross-subsidies, could improve access.
Charisma Acey is an assistant professor in the Department of City and Regional Planning. Her background includes work, research and travel to countries in West Africa, southern Africa and Central America. Her work focuses on local and regional environmental sustainability, with a focus on poverty reduction, urban governance and access to basic services. Her work relies on both quantitative and participatory, qualitative research approaches to understanding individual and household demand for improved infrastructure and environmental amenities. Current and past research projects, teaching and service learning courses have focused on addressing barriers to sustainable development such as human-environment interactions at multiple scales in urban areas around the world, poverty and participatory approaches to governance and development, the financing and sustainability of publicly provided services and utilities, local and regional food systems, environmental justice, and urbanization domestically and globally.
Recent and ongoing research includes fieldwork in Ghana, Nigeria and Uganda exploring sustainable household scale alternative energy solutions and access to basic services such as water and sanitation. She also has worked on participatory re-zoning for local healthy food systems and sustainability planning in Columbus, Ohio, and Portland, Oregon. Prior to joining UC Berkeley, Professor Acey was an assistant professor of city and regional planning in the Austin E. Knowlton School of Architecture at The Ohio State University, with a joint appointment with the Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity where she worked on global food justice issues and mapping geographic differences in resources and opportunities at the metropolitan scale. Her background includes six years of international work as a senior manager for relief and development NGOs working in countries in West Africa, southern Africa and Central and South America. She has also served as a U.S. State Department Fellow in Malawi and an American Marshall Memorial Fellow to Europe.