Changing Urban to Rural movements in Angola and Mozambique

Researcher: Cristina Udelsmann Rodrigues

The central objective of the research project Changing Urban to Rural movements in Angola and Mozambique, to be conducted between 2015 and 2019 is examining the features, the causes, motivations and perceptions of the movement of people from the cities to the rural areas today within a global context of massive urbanisation and urban concentration. The research uses as case studies two African countries, rich and highly urbanised Angola and poorer and less urban Mozambique. Movement being analysed refers to a broad scope of dislocations and displacements, including temporary and permanent migrations, returns to the countryside, counter-urbanisation trends, and other types of related phenomena. The analysis of this movement is conducted in areas where major rural projects are being developed, taking into account the different social categories involved at different levels, form the migrant labourer to policy stakeholders. The research is focused in one hand, on tangible contours of these movements – like scale and weight, causes, consequences or trends – and, on the other, on the correlated perceptions of these movements. The main hypothesis to be confirmed in this sense is that among different types of actors in different urbanisation contexts, the ways urban-rural migration is perceived are necessarily different but largely seen as an inescapable alternative to the lack of opportunities in the cities that continue to be the most desired places to live. The analysis of the perceptions and ideas associated to the urban-rural movements, combined with case studies of different contexts for urban-rural migration, is expected constitute a body of innovative knowledge, contributing both to the scientific development of worldwide comparative studies on this subject as well as to practical responses to population and socioeconomic change, the conception and implementation of population and development policies and practises in the nearby future of the globalised world.

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