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ACC International Urban Conference: A personal reflection

James Duminy

African Centre for Cities researcher James Duminy reflects on his experience of the ACC International Urban Conference which took place from 1 to 3 February 2018 at the University of Cape Town.  The ACC 2018 International Urban Conference was an important experience for me, both intellectually and personally. (more…)

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African Centre for Cities International Urban Conference: Day 3

Sean O' Toole

Urban studies in Africa have come a long way in the last half-century. Speaking on the final day of an international urban conference hosted by the African Centre for Cities (ACC) at the University of Cape Town (UCT), pioneering US-born urban researcher AbdouMaliq Simone drew on his early experiences to emphasise the gains of this […]

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African Centre for Cities International Urban Conference: Day 2

Sean O' Toole

The use of data to manage the world’s growing housing crisis was a pronounced theme in panels during the second day of the international urban conference hosted by the African Centre for Cities (ACC) at the University of Cape Town (UCT). Its use as a tool to manage Cape Town’s critical housing shortage was a […]


African Centre for Cities International Urban Conference: Day 1

Sean O' Toole

Why is Cape Town experiencing a water crisis? How does one offer a rounded answer without ignoring history and simplifying the facts? Building on these questions, should frightened citizens of Cape Town, many now scrambling to become water literate, embrace a call to decolonise narratives around water governance? While not explicitly framed as broad talking […]

ACC_IUC2018_Network Map

Reflections on 10 years of the ACC: Four Vignettes

As one of the early members of the ACC team Jane Battersby reflects on the evolution and maturation of the unit.  Sitting in the opening of the ACC Conference and listening to director Edgar reflect on our origin story, I found myself scanning across the packed venue and remembering snapshots of the proto-ACC. So, here […]

General info

ACC IUC General Information

General information for delegates attending the African Centre for Cities International Urban Conference, 1 to 3 February 2018, Upper Campus, University of Cape Town. ONSITE REGISTRATION 12:00-18:00 on Wednesday, 31 January 2018 at the Leslie Social Sciences Building, Upper Campus, University of Cape Town. 07:00-17:00 on Thursday, 1 February 2018 at the New Lecture Theatre, Upper Campus, University of Cape Town. […]


J Bobs Live – Off the Record

Kiri Pink Nob is bringing its special game show presentation of Off the Record to the African Centre For Cities International Urban Conference. This multi-award winning production returns to Cape Town’s shores to offers a different register of discourse, specifically tailored to the ACC Conference themes and beyond. Why would you, a serious academic mind, a true […]


ACC International Urban Conference Programme published

Preparations for the African Centre for Cities International Urban Conference are entering the final stages and we are excited to release the draft programme. With 71 panels and 16 roundtables the three-day programme is packed with fantastic contributions from around the globe. (more…)


In the press: More needed to achieve transformation

Edgar Pieterse

This article by Athina May, related to the work of the Integration Syndicate for Southern Suburbs Tatler, first appeared on 26 October 2017. The spatial layout of Cape Town has not changed much since 1994 and the exclusivity of the City Bowl has received much attention in the media when the Bromwell residents in Woodstock were […]


ACC NOTRUC Seminar Series: Thinking Emancipatory Change through In-depth Urban Case Studies

Henrik Ernstson, Suraya Scheba

Cities are highly unequal places where histories of oppression is etched into the very machinery that makes them tick. This includes policies and regulations around who can trade and where, the use of police or anti-eviction forces as an integral part of urban planning, and how large-scale infrastructure projects can re-shape wider ecological dynamics to […]


In the press: Unpacking the spatial paradox

Edgar Pieterse

This article by Kate-Lyn Moore, related to the work of the Integration Syndicate for UCT News, first appeared on 27 September 2017. Is a truly integrated and spatially just Cape Town possible? It is this question that the Integration Syndicate (IS) hopes to answer. The collective brings together research centres at three Western Cape universities, including UCT’s […]

Integration Syndicate_Episode4_Photo-by-Andy-Mkosi

Integration Syndicate: Episode 4

Edgar Pieterse

Building Blocks of Integration The fourth instalment of the Integration Syndicate was themed “Building blocks of Integration” and aimed at identifying the critical elements of a successful integration approach at the local level. The starting proposition was that city-­‐wide integration is inconceivable without a means to effect integrative processes at the neighbourhood level, especially in […]

Integration Syndicate_Episode 3_Photo1-by-Andy-Mkosi

Integration Syndicate: Episode 3

Edgar Pieterse, Caroline Skinner

ECONOMIC DRIVERS OF INTEGRATION AND INCLUSION PART 1: INTRODUCTION Edgar Pieterse (African Centre for Cities) introduced the Episode, situating it within the context of the Syndicate and the city. Episode 3 is fundamentally concerned with questions of economic transformation and jobs. Addressing the spatial economy of Cape Town and the critical challenges related to the […]


Urban Studies Postdoctoral Research Fellowship

SCOPE The postdoctoral fellowship is focussed on Urban Studies-Southern Urbanism. The candidate will have expertise in: qualitative social research, with a firm grounding in social theory and interest in the Global South. (more…)

2017 Open Book Festival

In the press: Authors to speak on cities, land, at next month’s Open Book Festival

This article by Open Book Festival director Mervyn Sloman originally appeared in the Cape Times, Tuesday, August 15, 2017. The secrets to writing and imagining cities into fiction will be shared by award-winning international authors at the Open Book Festival next month. Hosted by the Book Lounge and the Fugard Theatre, with events also taking […]

2017 Open Book Festival

Urban Conversations at 2017 Open Book Festival

African Centre for Cities (ACC) teams up with The Book Lounge to present four city-focussed events at the forthcoming 2017 Open Book Festival, which takes place from 6 to 10 September, Cape Town. (more…)

Legacy of pain: Georgina Williams and her 22-year-old daughter Jade. Williams’s 11-year-old son Michael was one of three young people shot dead by police in the Trojan Horse incident in 1985. Picture: PIPPA GREEN

Integration Syndicate Episode 2: Building a new city for future generations

As much as Athlone was a crossover space enabling art, music and other creativity in the 60s and 70s, the 1980s brought a new narrative to bear: one of increasing protests against the apartheid state, and the concomitant violence with which they were met. One of the worst incidents was on October 15, 1985. Known […]