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Fragile and compromised housing: Implications of land conflicts on housing development in peri-urban Accra, Ghana

Asafo, Divine Mawuli



Existing housing literature in the Global south suggests housing development processes are linear and do not appear to incorporate unexpected events such as land conflicts, which cause destructions, stoppages, and setbacks to housing development. This paper argues that the nexus between land conflicts and housing development can best be conceptualised as fragile and compromised housing. This concept draws attention to the highly violent politics of land and its impact on the housing process, the housing product, and the well being of the housebuilder. Using evidence from peri-urban Accra and drawing on interviews, the study unpacks the lived experiences of individual housebuilders in navigating through land conflicts to build. The study found that the impact of land conflicts on housing development manifests in complex ways including multiple financial commitments, capital lockdown, cyclical building, compromised housing, and compromised wellbeing. Arguably, these findings highlight the contemporary perspectives to understanding incremental and piecemeal housing in peri-urban Accra and by extension, the Global South.


Asafo, D. M. (2022). Fragile and compromised housing: Implications of land conflicts on housing development in peri-urban Accra, Ghana. Housing Studies,

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Aug 23, 2022
Online Publication Date Sep 15, 2022
Publication Date 2022
Deposit Date Sep 16, 2022
Publicly Available Date Sep 20, 2022
Journal Housing Studies
Print ISSN 0267-3037
Electronic ISSN 1466-1810
Publisher Taylor and Francis Group
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Keywords Housing; Peri-urban Accra; Land conflict
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Copyright Statement
© 2022 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License (, which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way.

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