Call for Chapters: Managing the Urban-Rural Divide Through an Inclusive Framework


Ayobami Popoola, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
Hope Magidimisha-Chipungu, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
Lovemore Chipungu, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

Call for Chapters

Proposals Submission Deadline: April 20, 2022
Full Chapters Due: August 18, 2022
Submission Date: August 18, 2022


Close to the prevailing urban inequalities in developing countries, the growing disparities between rural and urban areas in developing countries has been a cause of major concern. The rural-urban gap remains the single most well-documented development and welfare disparity in the developing world. This gap can be seen in the low economic activities, higher poverty levels and lower quality infrastructure and services in rural areas as opposed to urban areas. Some scholars have dubbed this phenomenon; the proximity gap. While the magnitude of this rural-urban divide is well-documented, very little has been documented around its impact on inclusive and sustainable urban development. The territorial concentration of essential services, infrastructure and economic activities have led many of rural areas into a spiral of decline. Notwithstanding the proximity gap is the interdependence between the urban and rural areas in developing countries. The rural-urban linkages and interactions have become an ever more intensive and important component of livelihoods and production systems in many areas. Yet, this straddling of the rural–urban divide is usually ignored, and the rigid division between “rural” and “urban” on the part of the economic activities, infrastructure and essential services, tilt the pendulum of quality of life in favour of urban areas, whether in perception or reality. There are significant synergies between many rural and urban areas but difference between living conditions and living expectations in rural areas in contrast with urban ones. This means that increasing numbers of rural residents are likely inclined to engage in rural-urban migration in search for better living conditions and opportunities. In most cases this makes life more difficult for low-income groups, as it sometime only translates to the urbanization of poverty especially in cases of low economic prospects in urban areas. This, consequently, exacerbate the already burgeoning spatial and socio-economic imbalances in urban areas and possibly threatens efforts to create inclusive and sustainable urban development, as urban areas become overwhelmed by increasing numbers of people moving from rural areas. There is growing interest among urban and regional planners, and policy makers to study complexities of the geography of rural areas as an imperative ingredient in fully maximizing the effort towards inclusive and sustainable development. The rural populations have different living conditions that involve different demands for economic participation, consumption, and well-being from that of urban populations. Hence both rural and urban areas deserve equal attention, especially after considering the complexity of their linkages. The book captures the spatial and socio-economic divide between rural and urban areas. Urban inequality is primarily considered a problem of rural-urban gap and it has turned from being considered as a question of economic development, to being seen as an issue of sustainability. The principle of even and equitable provision of infrastructure, essential services and creation of opportunities in the face of the real diversity of territorial situations predetermines the accessibility to public goods and resources aimed at the reduction of inequalities. The decrease in accessibility involves a greater demand for mobility and makes mobility a source of new inequalities that feedback into the vicious circle of the rural-urban disparities. It has been established that accessibility and mobility are strongly linked with rural development and sustainability. Accessibility is paramount to mitigating territorial imbalances and mobility is the usual way to confront the scarce opportunities and limited services in rural territories. This book is therefore premised within the inclusivity, equity and diversity mainstreaming of various elements of rural and urban spaces.


The book aims to capture the spatial and socio-economic divide between rural and urban areas. This book project is seen as a necessity and road map to revamping the discussion that surrounds the urban-rural sphere. It remains a necessity for researchers to be involved in the reawakening of the rural-urban spatial and economic divide argument. The book is of great relevance to scholars in planning, development studies, rural development, agricultural studies, sociology, geography, housing, community development, construction management and political science and other interdisciplinary studies who are interested in critiquing both urban and rural space. The book should be envisaged as a material database for the urban-rural problem identifiers and problem-solving approaches to some case studies for both urban and rural issues. The book as a collection of pre-21st century and 21st-century issues shall be a mixed combination of philosophical thinking, case studies driven studies, past and present works which will provide a plethora of readings focused on both urban and rural areas across the globe. It shall be narrative, philosophical and scientific in such a way that the real-time events are provided and future spatial resilience is well painted. Key to the book project’s focus and objective is the interest in the decolonisation of the understanding of rural development from the rest of African. The focus is propelled towards rebranding of the rural African thinking from the European justification or arguments to the African experience. The proposed book captures the spatial, economic and socio-environmental divide of the urban and rural space. It provides a global departure from the common rural or urban argument, but rather a balanced premise within the inclusivity, equity and diversity mainstreaming of various elements of respondents. The study within the contested space or surviving persons queries the peri-urban and regional spaces and people along increased and reported physical, social, economic and spatial inequality, diversity and disparity that exists along various ethno-racial and gender corridors. The interest is to provide a book that provides a balanced argument between urban and rural spaces so that inequality is managed, and diversity is harnessed for collective national development. Therefore, the proposed book will “collapse spatial walls” of urban and rural areas that seek to uncover the true perspectives of diversity, inclusion, equity, justice and fairness within social realms. The depth of this book’s enquiry rests on its critical investigation of urban and rural struggles for improved livability and livelihood enhancement.

Target Audience

The targeted audiences of the book are undergraduates/postgraduate students, academics, researchers, policy experts, rural project managers, departments involved in rural development, private professionals and institutions involved in urban and rural studies, management. The book would serve a broad audience from various stakeholders within their practice and professional theaters of rural and urban spaces.

Recommended Topics

Recommended topics include, but are not limited to, the following: • Rural Regions, Urbanisation, SDG, and Sustainability • City movers and struggle • Regional policies towards enhancing rural development • The contested spaces-peri-urban and rural transition • The urbanisation effect and the rural spatial change • SDG and Urban-rural performance • Urban-Rural community resilience against poverty, disaster, and pandemics • Promoting African Development through Indigenous Knowledge and self-identity • African Indigenous Agriculture and Food Security • Indigenous Knowledge System Approaches to conflict management and transformation. • African Traditional Leadership and Governance Systems. • Indigenous Knowledge Systems and local community enterprises, technology, and cultural diversity • Indigenous rural knowledge and housing development. • The Changing Face of African Urban-Rural Migration and Mobility • Exploring Labour-Based Approach for Rural Roads • Urban-Rural mobility and transportation dynamics • The Rural-Urban Setting: Place Geographies, Land and Housing

Submission Procedure

Researchers and practitioners are invited to submit on or before April 20, 2022, a chapter proposal of 1,000 to 2,000 words clearly explaining the mission and concerns of his or her proposed chapter. Authors will be notified by May 4, 2022 about the status of their proposals and sent chapter guidelines.Full chapters are expected to be submitted by August 18, 2022, and all interested authors must consult the guidelines for manuscript submissions at prior to submission. All submitted chapters will be reviewed on a double-blind review basis. Contributors may also be requested to serve as reviewers for this project.

Note: There are no submission or acceptance fees for manuscripts submitted to this book publication, Managing the Urban-Rural Divide Through an Inclusive Framework. All manuscripts are accepted based on a double-blind peer review editorial process.

All proposals should be submitted through the eEditorial Discovery® online submission manager.


This book is scheduled to be published by IGI Global (formerly Idea Group Inc.), an international academic publisher of the "Information Science Reference" (formerly Idea Group Reference), "Medical Information Science Reference," "Business Science Reference," and "Engineering Science Reference" imprints. IGI Global specializes in publishing reference books, scholarly journals, and electronic databases featuring academic research on a variety of innovative topic areas including, but not limited to, education, social science, medicine and healthcare, business and management, information science and technology, engineering, public administration, library and information science, media and communication studies, and environmental science. For additional information regarding the publisher, please visit This publication is anticipated to be released in 2023.

Important Dates

April 20, 2022: Proposal Submission Deadline
May 4, 2022: Notification of Acceptance
August 18, 2022: Full Chapter Submission
October 16, 2022: Review Results Returned
November 27, 2022: Final Acceptance Notification
December 11, 2022: Final Chapter Submission


Ayobami Popoola University of KwaZulu-Natal Hope Magidimisha-Chipungu University of KwaZulu-Natal Lovemore Chipungu University of KwaZulu-Natal


Business and Management; Computer Science and Information Technology; Education; Environmental, Agricultural, and Physical Sciences; Library and Information Science; Medical, Healthcare, and Life Sciences; Media and Communications; Security and Forensics; Government and Law; Social Sciences and Humanities; Science and Engineering
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