Over 3 billion people, just over half the world’s population, live in urban areas. Of this population, 1.5 billion live in ‘slums’ or ‘informal settlements’ which can be defi ned as unregulated, crowded and under-serviced settlements on marginal lands (Zetter and Deikun 2010: 5). These numbers are expected to grow, especially in developing nations. By 2050, it is estimated that 6.3 billion, 67 per cent of the world population, will live in urban areas (UN Economic and Social Aff airs 2012: 3) This is a dramatic jump from the 40 per cent of people in developing countries who lived in urban areas in 2000. Virtually all of the expected urban growth will take place in less developed regions, particularly those in Asia and Africa. Since
more than 80 per cent of the world’s refugees and asylum seekers live in the developing world, overall urbanization patterns are noteworthy. Urban refugees are a subset of a larger migration pattern of people moving to cities.