Relational patterns of Urbanization and Economic Growth in Sub-Saharan Africa

Scholars of economic development have always hinted that urbanization process in the developing world does not follow the historical patterns discerned in the developed world where a strong relationship between a country’s GDP and urbanization had been observed. To confirm or refute this thesis this study considers the pattern of relationships between the national economic growth rate and urbanization rates in SSA countries. Comparison is made between SSA countries and emerging and developed economies. Results indicate that whereas the traditional thesis still holds for SSA countries i.e. they urbanize without economic growth, new antithetical trends are also discernible where urbanization takes place with economic growth thereby revealing a whole new dimension of urbanization and economic growth relational patterns in Africa.


Article in Development Southern Africa 33(2) · April 2016


O.A. K'Akumu, Joseph Onjala