Netherlands Platform Complex Systems


2 - 3 July 2018
Institute for Advanced Study, University of Amsterdam

NPCS mini-workshop: Dynamics of deprived settlements

In this two-day event, we will examine the dynamics of deprived settlements in different geographic contexts; standards and transferability. To this end, we will bring together leading experts who either have empirical expertise on deprived settlements in different geographic regions, or a strong background in computational sciences of social systems.

According to the United Nations Population Fund, much of the rapid urbanization will unfold in Africa and Asia, bringing about the emergence and growth of deprived urban settlements (often referred to as slums) which is now a highly significant and intricate global challenge for our society. Also the current refugee crisis in Europe can lead to such settlements (camps) with inadequate living conditions, which with time may exhibit similar dynamics as slums in developing countries. The key challenge is that slums are complex adaptive systems whose organization and structure is the result of a hierarchy of sub-components. We see slums as dynamic, nonequilibrium systems that are constantly changing and adapting. Where organization does exist in slums, it has emerged spontaneously from the interactions of the component parts (Barros and Sobreira 2002), not dictated in a top-down manner.

About the workshop

In this workshop, we aim to bring together leading experts on the dynamics of deprived urban settlements. The main question to be addressed is:

What are the key variables that influence the emergence and growth of slums and what determinants are sensitive to the geographic region and scale parameters?

To this end, we will discuss the role of agent-based models (ABMs) for capturing the complex interactions and processes that contribute to the growth and emergence of slums. The workshop will result in a model framework which produces knowledge on slum dynamics that considers the particularity of different geographic contexts and scales.

NPCS sponsoring

The workshop is sponsored by the Netherlands Platform on Complex Systems (NPCS). The NPCS sponsors workshops to encourage new scientists to the field of complexity. Read more about the NPCS mini-workshops here.