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May 6, 2019

India
Sustainability, Urban Concerns, and the Indian Elections

General elections for India’s lower house of parliament began on April 11 and will last through May 19, with all ballots counted on May 23. This is the world’s largest democratic exercise. I had the …

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March 21, 2019

Democratic Republic of Congo
Ebola in DRC Spreads to Urban Areas Amid Conflict

A case of Ebola, the deadly hemorrhagic fever with terrifying symptoms, has been found in the second-largest city in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The city, Bunia, has a population of almost one million. The disease has already been identified in Butembo and Beni, the former with a population slightly larger than Bunia, the latter slightly smaller. The disease is now urban and rural in eastern Congo.

DRC-Ebola-Katwa-Eastern-Congo-Conflict

September 12, 2018

Mali
Africa is the Fastest Urbanizing Place on the Planet

Sub-Saharan Africa is urbanizing at the fastest rate in the world.

Bamako-Mali-Urbanization-Population-Africa

January 31, 2019

Health Policy and Initiatives
The Future of Global Health Is Urban Health

Health and infectious diseases have shaped the history of urbanization, but it is cities that will define the future of global health.

Four boys look ahead as one flies a kite over houses in the Petare slum in Caracas, Venezuela.

November 15, 2019

South Africa
What’s Behind South Africa’s Recent Violence?

Recent attacks that appeared to target immigrants have underscored South Africa’s struggle to combat violence and limit tensions with the rest of the region.

October 29, 2019

Nigeria
Beyond the Nigerian Correctional Services Act

Nigeria’s criminal justice system is in urgent need of reform. Prisons are overcrowded, holding 73,314 people despite having capacity for only 50,153. Of those held, an estimated 70 percent are awaiting trial and have not yet been convicted of a crime; reports find that some people have been awaiting trial for as long as thirteen years. The chronic underfunding of the justice system exacerbates overcrowding and pre-trial detention.

A Lady Justice statue stands outside the Court of Appeal in Abuja, Nigeria

July 5, 2018

Aging, Youth Bulges, and Population
Africa's Rapid Urban Population Growth Is Problematic, but Can Be Managed

A rapidly growing population will create a “demographic dividend,” and urbanization will accelerate economic development, or so the “Africa rising” narrative goes. Given Africa’s lack of basic infrastructure, ranging from roads to hospitals to schools, both propositions are dubious.

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October 8, 2019

Sub-Saharan Africa
A New Challenge to Confront: Rising Illicit Drug Use

New research suggests that African policymakers focused on the future have yet another pressing issue to add to their already full plate: A study released on the margins of the UN General Assembly meeting and funded by the European Union indicates that Africa will be the site of the world’s largest increase in illegal drug use over the next few decades.

A recovering drug addict receives his dose of methadone at a Medication Assisted Therapy clinic run by Doctors Without Borders (MSF) at Karuri Level 4 hospital in Kiambu, Kenya October 3, 2019.

October 2, 2019

Tanzania
International Health Officials and Tanzania Clash Over Potential Ebola Case

On September 8, a woman in her mid-thirties died in Tanzania of apparently Ebola-like symptoms. Tanzanian health officials conducted an autopsy, but ruled that Ebola was not the cause of death. The p…

Health workers dressed in protective suits stand on the other side of an orange fence.

October 1, 2019

Nigeria
Hundreds of Men and Boys Rescued From Purported Almajiri in Nigeria

The Nigerian police recently rescued some three hundred men and boys, many of them chained, from a purported Islamic school in Kaduna, according to Reuters. Some of the victims said that their parents had brought them to the building thinking it was an Islamic school in the almajiri tradition, but there is apparently no indication that the building ever was, in fact, a school.

Boys and girls protest and look at the camera in Kaduna, Nigeria.