Municipal Institute Of LearningMILE - Municipal Institute Of Learning
Reflections: Durban’s Informal Economy
​Over 60 senior officials from eThekwini Municipality attended MILE’s 11th Management Seminar hosted in partnership with the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) at the Durban City Hall on 14 February 2013.
 
The event which focussed on the findings of a 9 year research study undertaken in 5 cities on the informal economy which was recently completed.  Experts linked to UKZN,  Harvard University, Cornell University, Boston University, University of Cape Town and also linked to international organisations such as WIEGO (Women in Employment, Globalising and Organising) and SEWA (Self Employed Women’s Association) have began a series of dialogues with partner cities to better understand the Informal Economy. MILE through its collaboration with UKZN seized the opportunity to include senior city officials in this exposure dialogue. There were important lessons for eThekwini’s own policy on the informal economy. Officials who attended the Management Seminar were impressed by the content and calibre of the seminar.
 
Vumi Mchunu said, “I felt that this event was useful, it passed through a lot of information. I personally learnt a lot about the subject. I hope MILE continues with such seminars with relevant academic personnel as we get the opportunity to unpack certain challenges and share ideas.”
 
“This helped me understand more about how city planning affects informal participation and the decision making for policy creation. Also how urban planning and moving people away to formal structures can help to provide proper resources,” expressed Cindy Naidu (O’Brain).
 
This session was followed by a Policy Dialogue where city officials engaged further on the implications of the seminar and the research findings that could have relevance to eThekwini Municipality. As a key action eThekwini’s Business Support Unit will be engaging line departments in follow- up workshop.
 
The presentations from this event can be downloaded from here:
 
 

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