Africa's Urbanisation Dynamics 2020

Africapolis, Mapping a New Urban Geography

Africa is projected to have the fastest urban growth rate in the world: by 2050, Africa’s cities will be home to an additional 950 million people. Much of this growth is taking place in small and medium-sized towns. Africa’s urban transition offers great opportunities but it also presents major challenges.

Cities and urban agglomerations often develop organically, without the policies or investments in infrastructure and services to help them meet these challenges. Urban planning and management are key, and understanding urbanisation, its drivers, dynamics and impacts is essential for designing targeted, inclusive and forward-looking policies at local, national and continental levels.

This report, based on the Africapolis geo-spatial database ( covering 7,600 urban agglomerations in 50 African countries, provides detailed analyses of major African urbanisation dynamics placed within historical, environmental and political contexts. It examines the entire urban network, from small towns and secondary cities to large metropolitan regions, and presents targeted and realistic policy options to help build the African cities of tomorrow.

DON'T MISS! A new urban geography: What is driving urbanisation in Africa today?


OECD (2020), Africa's Urbanisation Dynamics 2020: Africapolis, Mapping a New Urban Geography; Sahel and West Africa Club,

Economic data

GDP growth: -9.8% Q2/Q1 2020 2020
Consumer price inflation: 1.3% Sep 2020 annual
Trade (G20): -17.7% exp, -16.7% imp, Q2/Q1 2020
Unemployment: 7.3% Sep 2020
Last update: 10 Nov 2020

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