Urbanization is an important driver of economic growth

But if this process is poorly managed, it can lead to urban sprwal, divided cities, high urban unemployment and poverty.

Laterite’s policy brief on economic geography in Rwanda outlines the trends in urbanization in Rwanda and its secondary cities. The brief is based on Laterite’s study of the economic geography of Rwanda’s secondary cities, funded by the IGC and supported by the Ministry of Infrastructure of Rwanda and the Rwanda Revenue Authority.

Rwandan is urbanizing fast

The brief shows that Rwanda is urbanizing quickly, especially in Kigali, the main driver of Rwanda’s economic growth. Kigali dominates the Rwandan economy. It acts as a hub for internal trade with and between secondary cities. But secondary cities have their own strengths, and should also play a part in Rwanda’s economic growth.

How can policy-makers share the benefits of urbanization?

Strategies include focusing on the relative strengths of secondary cities, thinking beyond city boundaries, and improving connectivity between cities. Learn more about the study and our findings in the policy brief.


Economic geography policy brief

Full text PDF (2 MB)

This study was carried out with funding from the IGC. Read the full report on the IGC’s website.

Cover image by Gatete Pacifique via WikimediaCommons.