Environmental Management of the Development of Ibadan, 1945 to 2009


African Humanities Program Dissertation Fellowships




It is axiomatic that adequate urban environmental management is essential for sustainable development in any country. As a corollary, urban centers have become the most conspicuous environments in which economic capabilities are expanded or impeded and social qualities of life are fulfilled or frustrated. However, urbanization could be as dangerous as it is important for the development of most African cities. This is because urban centers’ crucial role has not been sufficiently realized. The result is the evolution of what Blackwell (2000) called the “parasitic city.” Rather than providing the basis for sustained economic growth, cities have become serious impediments to development in Africa. In spite of the above identified crises, historical research on implications of urban management and environment for development has been relatively insignificant in Africa. Nigerian historians have documented the pre-colonial era, colonialism and popular responses, intra- and intergroup relations, and political, economic, and social history. However, there has been little or no research on the environmental history of the country. This research establishes environmental history as a veritable field of study in Nigeria. Ibadan, the largest (and one of the filthiest) cities in sub-Saharan Africa, is the primary focus of the study.