Submission of proposals

Example of formal social housing next to informal urbanisation in Cabuçú, São Paulo (Photo R.R..)

Example of formal social housing next to informal urbanisation in Cabuçú, São Paulo (Photo R. R.)


We are looking for original contributions from capable researchers and practitioners all over the world.

This is an initial call for expressions of interest to contribute to this publication. We would kindly ask you to submit a short 2-page proposal (not exceeding 1000 words) explaining the possible contents of your chapter including:
1.     A brief introduction/summary
2.     A brief description of the case you intend to study (all chapters
must be developed around a particular case city)
3.     How you intend to approach the case and how this approach caters
for the objectives of the book (please read the other sections of this website for a complete overview of the rationale of the book)
4.     Your main research questions
5.     A brief indication of the methodology
6.     A list of possible references

Initial proposals will be judged on the base of the following general criteria :
1. Academic excellence,
2. Adherence to the objectives and rationale of the book,
3. Relevance of the case to the intended coverage of the book (case studies in different socio-economic and cultural areas, according to the typology explained in the “book” section),
4. Clarity, conciseness, structure of the argument.

These are the specific criteria used to review abstracts:

  1. Is informality described as a spatial practice? To single out the abstracts dealing with economic informality, tourism, religion, etc. The abstract should deal with urban informality as a spatial practice. 
  2. Is urban informality connected to local or national political processes? Does the abstract investigate informality in relation to politics, governance, democratisation, the state, discourse of rights, or the rule of law?
  3. Is the abstract well written? Structure of the argument, spelling and grammar, adherence to academic conventions (quotations, sources, etc).
  4. Specific case studies? Specific case studies are preferred over mere theoretical writings. We prefer case studies of specific cities over cases that take countries as a whole.
  5. Overall impression of the abstract? A more subjective valuation of the abstract and whether it fits the objectives of the book.

This initial proposal should be simple and to the point. The editors will analyse your proposal before submitting it to a pool of senior reviewers. Editors expect to get back to possible contributors soon with an assessment of their proposal, indicating whether it has been accepted, accepted with amendments or rejected. Rejection would not be a sign of poor scholarship, but rather an indication that your focus does not fit the purposes of the book. For accepted proposals, editors expect to work with authors very closely in order to support them in the writing process, providing reviews and guidance about the development of the text.

We strongly encourage authors to seek co-authorship. Co-authoring a text is extremely fruitful and exciting and generally accelerates the process of crafting a good text. This is especially advisable for PhD candidates working on this theme and who would like to publish with us. We are looking for alternative views and interpretations that may challenge the existing literature. Female contributors will be sought, in order to increase diversity.  We hope to give the opportunity to a group of vigorous writers from the Global South to be heard, but we encourage scholars and practitioners from all over the world to submit proposals.

Please, submit your proposal until OCTOBER 10, 2014 to mentioning “Submission Book Informal Urbanisation” in the subject line. (The original deadline was extended, due to several requests).

The main aim of this book is to investigate the mutual relationship between formal institutions, political struggles and processes of informal urbanisation in different socio-political and cultural settings. It tries to find a middle ground between two opposing perspectives on the political
meaning of urban informality. The first, the ’emancipatory perspective’, frames urban informality as a practice that fosters autonomy, entrepreneurship and social mobility. The other perspective, more critical, sees  informality predominantly as a result of political exclusion, inequality and poverty. Is urban informality indeed merely the result of a democratic deficit caused by governing autocratic elites and ineffective bureaucracies? Or do we see urban informality as a fertile breeding ground for bottom-up democracy and more political participation? Please, read all the sections of this website for a complete overview of this project.

Please, do let us know if you need supplementary information.

Here is the working schedule and deadlines. The working schedule is tentative, but we hope to have the book ready by mid 2016 at the latest (hopefully before).

Here are the main steps:

10 OCT 2014: Authors will send their expression of interest to take part in this project clearly explaining their empirical analysis in a 1000- word summary

30 NOV 2014: Authors will be informed about suitability for inclusion in the book. In some cases, authors will be asked to refocus their chapter to fit into the logic of enquiry and objectives of the book. Authors will be instructed on the guidelines for writing chapters and close assistance will be offered to authors during the writing process

15 MARCH 2015: First versions of chapters submitted to book editors

15 MARCH-JULY 2015: Review procedure by editors and external committee members: authors get feedback as soon as their chapter has been reviewed

15 AUGUST 2015: Deadline for comments from editors and scientific committee

15 NOV 2015: Pre-final chapters are submitted by authors to editors and scientific committee

30 JAN 2016: Editors will send final comments to authors. Deadline for iconographic material (photographs and maps)

15 MARCH 2016: Final chapters submitted by authors

15 MAY 2016: Deadline for final editing

15 JULY 2016 Submission to publisher



5 thoughts on “Submission of proposals

  1. I am interesting on the proposed book, and I would like to contribute a chapter on informal housing in Cairo, Egypt. If you are interesting, would you please let me know in order to send my proposal for reviewing,
    Best Regards


  2. Indeed I look forward to the final results!

    Lets hope inclusions will be interesting, (hopefully educational to the practitioner – usually non academic in determining & progressing institutional literature), & that the eventual reading, was foundational upon refereed, provoking research questions?

    I look forward to some of the arguments/ discussions enrolee to the FINAL publication? More ever, the global answers that the research conducted, will imbue. In sincerity lets hope this book will pragmatically pave a path, that Housing Organisations & adjoint organs of State, including the practitioners’ (to this wider arena) may find methodology to apply the recommendations & conclusions, that will unfold, of each submission.

    Perhaps a follow up book should be considered, as to the successes, there of this eventual publication?

    Wishing all authors well, & here’s to; (please) exciting literature, that evokes the readerships’ mind & body. That it would WILL to a heart of ACTION.

    Lets’ include an exciting portrayal of the realities between the factions or emulsification, exposing, the political delivery systems (agendas) & that of the seminary outcome for the people.

    In my opinion, to each, GLOBALLY, a population succumbs between the flows & ebbs of its politicians’, (in this instance fostering the informal in a loose or structured urbanisation plan). Too, must unfold results inclusive of the urban sprawl or density, and of urbanisation, factor metaphysical linkages for the configuration of either, in the social; growth (entrepreneurship), decay (lawlessness) or stagnation (without salt – multiplying factors) of its people (the very blood of cities, nations & continents).


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