Characterising Centre-Hinterlands : Transition Design as a framework for the assessment of urban futures

Mike Louw, Daniel Elkin, Gerhard Bruyns

Research output: A Conference proceeding or a Chapter in BookConference contributionpeer-review

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This article discusses recent urban development in two cases, Imizamo Yethu, South Africa, and Tai O Village, Hong Kong, within transition design frameworks. The article builds on contemporary theories that suggest categorical distinctions between urban population centres and that less dense hinterlands support adverse normative relationships in the context of continuous economic, administrative, political, and other transitions. It introduces the premise of “centre-hinterlands,” to describe conditions where hinterland conditions are found within the centre and where researchers can construct provisional, administrative, and economic difference as inequity. The article presents research in Imizamo Yethu and Tai O that elaborates this description. The main methods applied in Imizamo Yethu include a morphological study and field observation, and the key findings in Imizamo Yethu include the gradual loss of distinction between “formally and informally” developed parts of the settlement in morphological character, developmental model, and administration. The main methods applied in Tai O Village include stakeholder workshopping, conducting a survey and interview, and a short-term pedestrian traffic monitoring project. The key findings in Tai O include economic and behavioural patterns that economically and socially entangle the village with the surrounding region. The article concludes with a discussion of transition design frameworks’ relationship to potential for radical change in each development case.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Evolving Scholar
Subtitle of host publicationPaper presented for the 14th Conference of the International Forum of Urbanism at TU Delft
EditorsClaudiu Forgaci, Akkelies Van Nes, Frederique Belliard, Paul Suijker, Lei Qu, Deigo Sepulveda-carmona, Taneha Kuzniecow Bacchin, Alexander Wandl, Leo Van den Burg, Birgit Hausleitner, Fransje Hooimeijer, Rene Van Der Velde, Macheil Van Dorst, Animesh Sahoo, Rodrigo Cardoso, Caroline Newton, Adriaan Bisschop
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 2022
Externally publishedYes
EventThe 14th conference of the International Forum on Urbanism - Delft, Netherlands
Duration: 25 Nov 202127 Nov 2021

Publication series

NameThe Evolving Scholar
ISSN (Print)2667-2812


ConferenceThe 14th conference of the International Forum on Urbanism


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