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Everyday African Urbanism

Project Overview

Everyday African Urbanism is a conceptual framework that focuses on everyday interaction in African cities. To plan a different future, the framework argues that we have to first understand the lived reality of people in urban spaces. The Africa Centre applied this framework to a research project titled: The Food Security Lab.

The Food Security Lab

The Food Security Lab comprised 16 months of research within a community called Kanana, in Gugulethu, Cape Town. Research focused on how residents managed their food requirements in households that earned a monthly income of R4,000 or less. The Food Security Lab examined the following questions: Why did the subjects purchase the food they did? Where did they shop and how often? Beyond financial constraints, what influenced their food purchasing choices? At what income level is it possible to secure a high quality regular diet? What environmental, social and psychological factors prevent a strategic approach to food purchases and consumption?

Central to the research was an exploration of local food suppliers including spaza shops, street vendors, and informal cooking facilities. The Food Security Lab included a review of the spaza shops detailing their stock, their supply chains and consumer behaviour.

For an in-depth look at the study and its findings, we invite you to scroll through the report here.

For your future reading, download the complete report here.