Peri-urbanisation: a blessing or scourge?
Keywords:Agriculture, households, land, livelihood, peri-urban
The rate of agricultural land conversion in peri-urban communities due to peri-urbanisation and inefficient use of agricultural lands has raised concerns at both local and global levels. This paper surveys the literature and synthesises the key arguments for and against peri-urbanisation. A review of the literature demonstrates that the focal arguments focus on employment, diversification and intensification of agriculture, cash-income activities, livestock rearing, access to goods and services, unsanitary conditions, social vices, weakening social relations, deforestation, high cost of living, and out-migration. We conclude that peri-urbanisation brings about the betterment of living conditions and at the same time displaces local livelihoods, while breeding poverty for local residents. Hence, we recommend the design and implementation of policies that will secure agriculture lands, while promoting urban activities to enable farmer households to cultivate their land and at the same time engage with the new urban opportunities.