Brokering the social contract in India’s slums
Political brokers, who have emerged through a solid bottom-up process, operate in the informal space between the state and the citizen
Are slums a sign of economic energy and springboards to a better life, as some economists like Edward Glaeser have argued? Or are they metastasized poverty traps, as others contend? The jury is still out. Either way, their pervasive presence across the world—from the megacities of the developed world to the urban sprawls of Latin America to the emergent hubs of Asia and Africa—points to the reality of the developmental challenge they present.