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Latinamericanist

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Title:
Latinamericanist
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University of Florida latinamericanist
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Latin americanist
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University of Florida Center for Latin American Studies
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Gainesville, Fla.
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Center for Latin American Studies,
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English
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v. ;28-36 cm.

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Periodicals -- Latin America ( lcsh )
Study and teaching (Higher) -- Periodicals -- Latin America -- Florida ( lcsh )
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Periodicals ( fast )
serial ( sobekcm )
periodical ( marcgt )

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Also issued online.
Dates or Sequential Designation:
Vol. 1, no. 1 (Feb. 3, 1964)-
Numbering Peculiarities:
Suspended between v. 35, no. 1 (fall 1999) and v. 36, no. 1 (spring 2005).
General Note:
Latest issue consulted: Vol. 36, no. 2 (fall 2005).

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University of Florida
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UF Latin American Collections
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Copyright, Patricia Alba at Center for Latin American Studies. Permission granted to University of Florida to digitize and display this item for non-profit research and educational purposes. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions requires permission of the copyright holder.
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337250 ( ALEPH )
5269284 ( OCLC )

Full Text








MAY





UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA VOLUME 7, NUMBER 4
CENTER FOR LATIN AMERICAN STUDIES APRIL 10, 1972 COLLLG9. LI:-i"ARY
GAINESVILLE, FLORIDA


Unique features mark this year's Latin American Conference


The 22nd Annual Latin American Conference, held at the University of Florida February 15-21, 1972, was a departure from past conferences in several ways. First, it was a working conference with definite goals among them, to isolate and define research priorities in the field of urbanization in Latin America. The 96 participants represented a wide variety of discipline, from engineering to the social sciences. Everyone had something unique to contribute to the common interest: the problems of urbanization.
Eight of the eleven position papers presented at the Conference were prepared by Latin Americans an unique (in comparision with many U.S. conferences) and valuable contribution. For once Latin Americans were telling U.S. scholars what their problems were, instead of North American scholars trying to ascertain and solve Latin American problems based upon their own singular experiences. The position papers, cover-


ing the various determinents of urban policy and land policies: descriptions of urban growth in Costa Rica and the Dominican Republic and the problems of developing urban growth models, were given during the first two working days (February 16, 17) of the Conference.
The afternoon of February 17, the entire Conference moved off the campus to Riverside Villas, Homos assa Springs. A day was spent in intensive workshops on public services, land policy, public works and private investment. Saturday all the Conference pArticipants attended a round table discussion of the interpolicy linkages and functional ties of the key urban policies and their determinants (subjects of the four workshops). This off-campus "cloistering" was a unique and well-received feature of this year's Conference. It gave the nine Latin American and nine out-of-state participants a chance to see another part of Florida while enabling the University of Florida staff and students to


Participants at the last luncheon of the Conference. L4-


get away from the pressures and interruptions of their office routines.
The final day of the Conference on the University of Florida campus (Monday, February 21) was spent in four separate summary sessions to evaluate the recommendations of the workshop committees for specific policies of urban growth and research in that area. The workshop recommendations were presented in extensive reports prepared by graduate students of the University of Florida enrolled in a special seminar which treated subjects related to the theme of the Conference. This was an additional and valuable contribution to the Conference by graduate student participants.
On a special questionnaire, created to evaluate the Conference for the purpose of guiding future meetings, the 96 participants indicated satisfaction with the length of the Conference and with its unique features mentioned above.
Proceedings of the Conference, including the eleven position papers and the four workshop reports, will be published within the next few months in a soft-cover edition under the editorship of Dr. Gustavo A. Antonini, Conference Chairman. The interest of the graduate students and faculty of the University of Florida has been aroused to pursue research projects on urban problems in Costa Rica and the Dominican Republic, specifically. Valuable contacts were established between Caribbean, Central American and University of Florida scholars and professionals, which will be of great assistance when urban research projects are initiated in those areas.









Chicken and the egg:


public services and urbanization


The final session of the Public Services Workshop was held February 21, 1972. Members included co-chairmen Felicity Trueblood, Assistant Professor of History, and Dr. Richard Renner, Professor of Education; Dr. Paul Doughty, Professor of Anthropology, and Kurt Kent, Assistant Professor of Journalism and Communications, served as staff members; Dr. C~sar Garcia, Professor at the Universidad Cat6licaMadre y Maestra,Santiago, Dominican Republic, as a guest; and graduate students Elizabeth Ferris, as rapporteur, Bruce Rocheleau and Jorge Uquillas. The following is a abstract of the report prepared by the workshop members.


Working conferences such as these are valuable for underscoring the limits of our own knowledge. Conceptually, methodologically and even factually, we must admit how very difficult it is to study and analyze the Latin American city and the whole process of urbanization in that geographical area.
At this stage in our collective knowledge, we can safely assume that people breed, people migrate, cities grow, and, in particular, big cities grow bigger. It might therefore be more productive to begin in the middle, accept certain phenomena as given, and work backwards and forward from there. There are thus two basic approaches to the study of public policy and urbanization in Latin America: one is to seek the causes of rapid urbanization, while the other is simply to accept urbanization as a given and to look at the pressures wreaked by this phenomenon upon the city and its policy-makers, whether local (municipal), provincial or national. Since migration studies are, to date, far and away the most numerous genre dealing with problems of urbanization in Latin America, one suspects that the latter approach may be the more productive. For the purposes of common ground during the workshops, "public services" were differentiated from public works in that they required 1) relatively long-term service, 2) continuing personnel, and 3) a relatively low initial capital outlay, or, in sum, a relatively high ratio of wages and maintenance costs to the initial cost of the physical plant. In addition to the problem of distinguishing between public services and public works, we were faced with attempting to distinguish what other factors not traditionally or commonly conceived of as public services, but which legitimately could be so construed, might play significant causal roles in urban growth and offer fruitful possibilities for further study and research. The consensus of our workshop was that the following were the most important, with the firstnamed the key: employment, education, the appeal of urban values, public housing, public health and traditional urban services.
The specific cases of San Jos6 and Santo Domingo are illustrative of another important problem. We lack finished, detailed, intergrated portraits of these cities from the viewpoint of the particular city-who lives there, why and how? -what function these cities perform and for whom, why and how? -how power and rewards are distributed, maintained or lost and so on. The list is infinite. Indeed, as was noted in the introduction to Volume I, Latin American Urban Research, a great deal more is known about


certain Andean villages than about certain Latin American cities.
Regarding the specific topic of our workshop, public services such as electricity, water and sewage are not significant causal factors in the explosive growth which has occurred over the past thirty years. What we have seen in Latin America during the past thirty years is a form of human settlement and settler which, for want of better terms, we might call urban colonization and urban colonist. As lands or even older sections of the existing city are invaded, occupied and/or developed, traditional urban public services are hopefully provided to meet new demand, But to argue that existing services, except in carefully planned urbanizaciones caused such growth is to put the cart before the horse. We are speaking here primarily of the physical growth of the city.
A good deal of our workshop discussions concerned rural or small-city issues as they relate to problems in services in the primate city. We may have been overly concerned with the notion that cities do not exist in isolation from their hinterlands, or, indeed, from other cities in a national system. It seemed likely to most of us that if public services policy in small cities were different, i.e., more plentiful services were provided, primate cities would exert less attraction, especially in public employment and education.
In several ways, Costa Rica and the Dominican Republic are similar; in others, their contrasts are great. These contrasts have the potential for suggesting new research questions which might otherwise have remained hidden. For example, the relative dispersal of primary schools in
From these general considerations, we proceeded to formulate the following series of fundamental questions relating to public services: 1) Why does government provide public services? 2) Why do some public services have priority over others? 3) Who finances public services? 4) How does the structure of national-local relationships influence the formation of public policy as it relates to public sevices? 5) Who receives the benefits of public services? 6) Under what conditions do economies and diseconomies of scale occur with respect to particular services? 7) To what extent is there a difference between expectations and reality in the provision of public services and how does this difference affect urban growth? 8) How do the values of people differ with respect to the importance they place upon a particular public service (controlling for various factors such as socio-economic status, education and soon)?







We were also concerned with a few specific questions for research.
Expectation of employment (public and private) is a major motive for migration to cities. Upward mobility of urban migrants could be aided by employment services. The Dominican Republic has such services, but it was discovered in one study that this potentially valuable service was very little utilized. A study of why such public services have not been successful so far could do much to suggest the viability of employment placement services as an institution.
To what extent are particular services really free and conveniently located, when they exist? And to what extent is there open or equal access to existing services? A crucial question is to what extent are small town and urban barrio populations prevented from making "popular" decisions about the provision, on their own initiative, of schools, clinics, water and so on. What political structures or philosophical rationales are possible in public policy which might free communities to exercise their own initiatives?
Throughout our workshop sessions, several conclusions became obvious. In the Latin American nations studied, a large percentage of the nation's public services are located in the urban areas in general, and in the capital cities in particular. There is a growing deficit in the quantity (and quality) of public services demanded or needed and those that are currently being provided. In spite of this deficit, the urban dweller has far more access to public services of all types than does his rural counterpart.
In the discussions concerning the relationship of public services to urban growth, it was decided that public ser-


vices do contribute to urban growth inasmuch as people migrate to the cities expecting to find better public services. One of our research priorities, therefore, consists in studying the interrelationship between the expectations and the realities of public services. The determination of the actual existing state of public services may be analyzed by using official and/or simi-official documents and reports. In studying the expectations of the people-both in urban and rural areas social survey research techniques are suggested.
It was repeatedly stressed that prime research priority must be given to study of the distribution of public services within a given social structure. An analysis of one particular public service in a comparative (by social class, urban location) framework would be a valuable contribution in studying why some barriadas have more services than others and the reasons behind this inequality.

Concerning methodological approaches, many suggestions were made. The performance model, using as a base the four interrelated components of citizen satifaction, problem solving, resource expenditure and function maintenance or service availability, could be a fruitful methodological model. The one particular methodological problem which stands out in trying to analyze the effect of public services on urban growth is the high degree of interrelationship between public services, public works and private investment. It has been suggested that techniques such as factor analysis might enable us to get away from thinking in terms of individual variables and to begin thinking in terms of underlying dimensions and interrelated variables.


Private investment: an aid to regional development?

The following is a condensation of the Private Investment Workshop report. The final workshop session was held February 21, 1972. Members included co-chairmen Dr. David Denslow, Assistant Professor of Economics, and Dr. James Ross, Assistant Director of International Programs; Dr. David Smith, Associate Professor of Geography and of the Urban Studies Bureau, as a staff member; guests Dr. Suphan Andic, Professor at the Caribbean Research Institute, University of Puerto Rico, and Dr. Dale Truett, Professor of Economics, Florida International University; and graduate students Walter Guy-Brown Jr., as rapporteur, Manuel Carvajal, Felipe Manteiga and Francis Gallagher.


The workshop on private investment concentrated on developing research priorities and possible methodologies for the Dominican Republic. During the first session of the workshop ground rules were laid and tentative research priorities were identified. In the second session, we concentrated on a case study of private investment as itaffects urban growth in the Dominican Republic. We.related tentative research issues to tle situation in the Dominican Republic in a third session. In the final session


we examined thepossible impact of various private investment decisions on urban growth in the Dominican Republic.
Several participants in the workshop stressed the need to include political considerations in any discussion of governmental incentives and regulations affecting private investment. Government is concerned with the maintenance .of its power. In a democracy that may mean it has a short time horizon, its main concern may be the outcome of the next election. In a dictatorship that may


mean social overhead capital is allocated to a primate city or to road building to facilitate control of the country. It would be desirable to know the preception of the government of how the location, type and level of private investment will affect its continuance in power and to learn how exogenous political factors affect the government's position toward private investment. In the Central American countries one must take account of the constraints of the common market on the location of new industries.








The time may come when the now politically marginal people in the urban centers will represent a powerful political force. If restricted governmental resources do not permit public response to the demands of urban populations, the government may consider the subsidization of private investment to meet such needs.
Participants in the workshop urged that it be kept in mind that little is known about what are desirable levels of urbanization in Central American and Caribbean countries (or anywhere else, for that matter). To judge opitimal city scale one must have a set of goals or standards. Such goals should include improvement of median dietary standards, health and social adjustmentnot just an increase in per capita income. It may be that urbanization in Caribbean and Central American countries has not proceeded to the stage of diminishing returns. The goals mentioned may be more easily attained through policies to facilitate the further growth of primate cities.
One workshop participate explained how the limited availability of energy imposes a ceiling on the attainable level of living within any region. He urged consideration be given to long-range planning with attention paid to growth along lines to minimize the use of sources of energy, allowing a higherlevel non-growth equilibrium. If one goal of development is to reduce the birth rate, for example, then those aspects of development which achieve that goal without requiring much use of chemical energy should be preferred.
In an effort to determine why industry absorbs no more labor than it does and why people migrate to cities where unemployment is high, one could apply recently developed statistical techniques to information available on computer tapes in the Center's Latin American Data Bank.
Secondary urban growth is thought to have a favorable affect on agricultural development. In these areas, incomes generally would rise as a result of employment opportunities. This would provide rapid growth in demand for commodities such as milk and vegetables. Since these commodities are labor intensive, agricultural production could be greatly increased in total and perfarm without enlarging farm acreages. The opportunity to enlarge the farm business in this manner would directly


increase income. In addition, an opportunity for urban jobs could reduce the rural population, providing scope for further increases in business size and incomes.
Secondary urban growth could also increase capital availability, which in turn would be conducive to farm expansion and modernization. Rural people find jobs in the urban area and often send money back to the home farm or in in many cases continue part-time farming. Increased farm income arising from improved markets provides an added basis for capital formation.
Urban centers formed as a result of a decentralization policy would provide expanded opportunities for education, travel and contact with new ideas, widening the horizons of rural people and making them more amendable to change.
This combination of favorable circumstances, both for agriculture and the new urban center, argues for decentralization. The Dominican Republic's regionalization program provides an opportunity to study the validity of the argument.
It has been pointed out that a favorable climate for investment is not the product of inducements such as tax abatement, tariff exemptions, accelerated depreciation, easy credit terms, protection against devaluation and the like. Key elements are those which permit and facilitate profitable operations based on relatively free management decisions.
Private investors know they cannot initiate and operate enterprises with total freedom, but they want to come as close to the goal as possible. Generally, they want help, not hinderances. They will investigate the bait of tax exoneration, such as that being offered in the Dominican Republic, but they will more fully and carefully study all obstacles and problems that may spell failure for their enterpreneurial efforts.
It is important to measure the benefits as well as the costs of attracting private investment. The rewards private investment can bring through increased production, more jobs, enlarged purchasing power, expanded training, greater management experience, large tax revenues, expansion of exports, displacement of imports, higher living standards and accelerated economic development should be greater than the cost of private investment incentives. These costs


and benefits could be studied within the framework of the Dominican Republic's regionalization program. Case studies also could be conducted on private investment programs underway in other Latin American countries.

The major proposal to come from our workshop is that there be an analysis of a regionalization plan and its implementation in the Dominican Republic. The plan is aproposal for strengthening ten regional centers through a variety of measures designed to encourage the location of new industries in or near those center. Drawn up by Guillermo Santoni and titled Regionalizaci6n de la Repbiblica Dominicana, the plan is available from the Oficina Nacional de Planificaci6n.

We were able to agree only on suggestions toward a methodology for such a study; we came to no consensus on what approaches to use. Possibilities) include surveying the literature written about efforts to encourage the formation of secondary growth poles in other countries. European experience shows that governments must use strong incentives in order to persuade private investment to flow to such centers. There are studies available by Jorge Hardoy and Walteri Stohr, among others, about the encouragement of secondary growth poles in Latin American countries, such as Chile and Cuba. Their experience may be less relevant to most Caribbean and Central American countries than that of the Dominican Republic.

We agree on the importance of considering several explicit goals in any study. There was a near-consensus that any publication resulting from it should be analytical, not evaluative. That is, it would contain an analysis of the plan and its implementation and both the output and outcome of implementation with respect to diet, health, life expectancy, social adaption of individuals, political participation, growth of per capita income and other goals but there would be little effort to weight those various goals. The main purpose of the study would be to glean information from Dominican experience which could be used elsewhere. Toward that end, the analysis should include simulation of what might have happened had policy been different, that is favoring more rapid growth of the largest city rather than regionalization.









Property taxation: land policies dilemma


The following is an abstract of the report made by the members of the Land Policies Workshop. The final session of the workshop was held February 21, 1972. Members included cochairmen Dr. Charles Wagley, Graduate Research Professor of Anthropology, and Dr. Raymond E. Crist, Research Professor of Geography; Dr. David Niddrie, Professor of Geography, as a staff member; guests Dr. Jorge Hardoy, Professor at the Instituto Torcuato di Tella, Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Arq. Guillermo Santoni, Universidad Nacional Pedro Henriquez Urefa, Santo Domingo; and graduate students Charles Palmer, as rapporteur,Christopher Howell, Howard Tupper and Josh Alvarez.


The relative lack of hard data and sound theory relating to the process of urbanization in Latin America renders it difficult to suggest positively policies that national and local governments should undertake in this area. Whereas some Latin American experts contend that urbanization is a necessary prerequisite for modern industrial growth, and should therefore not be inhibited, most participants in the Land Policies Workshop agreed that general, integrated planning was needed, which would control both the push by the countryside and the pull by the cities.
It was believed that development of the intermediate city and small town could perhaps reduce migration to the primate city. In that such a regional approach would more fully utilize the national territory of each country, as against an over-concentration of economic and political power in one small area, it would hopefully reduce the amount of unemployment and/or underemployment in both city and campo, and thus also reduce migration.
The success of the small town to act as a buffer between the major city and rural areas has been severely limited by a number of problems. Although in the last two decades the large towns have grown rapidly, the smaller ones have experienced a relative stagnation or decline. This may be due partly to the "fill-in" process: small towns are losing part of their more dynamic inhabitants to the large city, while gaining rural inhabitants with few skills. A vicious circle keeps city people away from the more backward areas: comparatively, facilities are bad, living standards low and salaries a fraction of those in the major urban areas. Few people choose to work there, and so the backward region remains backward.
In the Land Policies Workshop, discussion concerning small towns centered primarily around the possibilities of land or property taxation and the necessity of cadastral surveys.
For many local governments the property tax is often the only levy with which they have to support the services desired by the community. It was discussed during the conference whether the haphazard manner and inefficiency with which this tax was collected was owing to apathy on the part of the local authorities, or to lack of trained personnel and the necessary cadastral surveys, or possibly to both.
Several Latin American countries have attempted to utilise the property tax as a positive tool for rural economic development. In Colombia several attempts have been made to use the tax both as a measure to provide revenue for the


local governments as well as to encourage the improved utilization of land resources. But such attempts have been ineffective, because of generally poor administration, including the lack of trained personnel to implement and enforce the levy, as well as the lack of up-to-date property assessments, and because of the logistical and technical problems of adequately establishing such assessments. One of the major problems lies in the fact that such a tax is ineffective without realistic land values, yet the administrative effort needed to make a reliable survey will hardly be forthcoming unless the prospective yield of the taxation makes such an effort worthwile for the national authorities.
Increasing population is bringing about changes in contemporary Latin American life.The most dramatic change is the recent urbanization process found, in varying degrees of intensity, throughout the region.
It is theorized there is a point in a nation's historic development when it goes through a maximized urbanization process. For most of Latin America that period will reach its peak during the remainder of this century.
Latin American countries often contain primate cities that are both the largest and are several times larger than the next city of consequence. Primacy has now become associated with over-urbanization and underdeveloped countries. It exists according to theoreticians when many smaller cities and towns are dominated by the much larger city. There have been efforts to discover detrimental effects of primacy on national development; yet some have puggested it may be desirable for the smaller Latin American nations to encourage growth in the direction of city-states. What happens to social institutions as a result of the primacy of certain cities? What activities tend to coalesce in these cities? How do they compare in functions and structure with other cities?
As numbers of people increase, so too do diversity of aspirations, personalities, goals and attitudes. The complex relationships that evolve, if handled rationally, require a rational power structure which, of necessity, must tap a broad socio-cultural source. People oriented toward this structure are influenced by its leaders. Which social institutions in Latin American cities are responsible for land use policy decisions? Who are the land speculators and how are they tied into this power structure?
How extensive is urban land speculation? Considering the widening gap between need and supply, the immense slum and squatter areas found throughout the region, the cost of extending already over-burdened public services







beyond open land to suburban developments, can the question of the extent of land speculation be over-emphasized? With increasing numbers of low-class, urban migrants forced to locate on the urban fringe, industry seeking lowwage, unskilled labor is likely to follow. What valuable agricultural land is "consumed' in the relocation process?
Inadequate transportation systems limit the distance workers can reside from their employers. Currently, it is cheaper for low-class workers to buy on credit small plots of land on the urban fringe on which they errect simple homes. Should wages increase in proportion to urban living costs, and should travel costs to employment exceed acceptable levels, if land speculation patterns and assessments were to alter, there would likely be significant changes in city morphology. Certainly these conditions are not permanent. It is possible that if the cost of living on the periphery of the city exceeds the cost of living within the city, then the poor and the low-class workers may begin to move into the city.
It is unclear as to whether urban policy makers and the elite view their society's future as intimately related to the conditions of all living in the city. Do the middle-class and upper-class view the workers and poor as an unthinking, unimportant mass or do they display major concern for the largely inadequate living conditions in which most city residents exist? Are public policies decided on the basis of special interests or on an informed understanding of individual and group needs and the dissatisfactions that have arisen from rising expectations?
It is unrealistic to expect the same kind of social development in the "have-not" nations as has transpired in the "have" nations. Industrialization has been characteristic of North American-European-Japanese cities, subject to the power sources and location of industry in these regions. The question arises whether, projections of theory to Latin America will confuse pecularities with universal factors. Are consequent statements about Latin American over-urbanization dependent upon a perceived North American relationship between economic development and urbanization? The implication is that both are closely parallel, yet the relationship between them remains unclear.
How credit is obtained for land purchases and development is a complex and largely unresearched area. Whether Latin Americans depend on tax incentives, loans from development banks, protection from foreign competition or other means to induce private entrepreneurs to observe policies set by government is not clear.
In Latin America political decisions take precedence over economic ones in the justification of seeking compatibility of social and technological institutions. Translated into actual policy and program, what then becomes the role of government federal, state and municipal -in urban affairs? How are powers of taxation delegated? Are land assessments equitably distributed throughout the city? What are the objectives of revenue allocation as they affect land use?
Public land policy decisions confronting Latin American nations depend to a great part on the composition of their population. What are the realities of the people who occupy low-cost housing and what is the stereotype which upper-middle and upper-class planners have of these people? What are the cultural and social preferences such as for


housing types and schools? What are the obstacles to acquiring housing? How do different social groups manage to meet bureaucratic and economic conditions in procurring housing? Are there "culture-brokers" or middlemen who assist them to work within the system? Answers to these questions are important to the urban planner, especially if general urban plans are an objective.
National economic development planning is almost universal in Latin America. Unfortunately, there has been little effort to coordinate these plans with the urbanization phenomenon. What regional planning that does exist, and has been studied, indicates there is some direction toward national policies of land allocation within a comprehensive economic development program. Long-range improvement in Latin American urban conditions is highly dependent upon planned physical development. The questions raised are based upon those discussed in the workshop. Far from allinclusive, they illustrate the need for extensive research to provide the foundation for effective, comprehensive land-use policy. The anticipated Latin American urbanizing trends impress upon us the absolute necessity for immediate, systematic efforts.
A major function of small-scale agriculture is an employment base for large numbers of people until the nonagricultural segment of the economy develops more remunerative jobs. Considering the high rate of urban unemployment and the relatively slow growth of industry in most Latin American countries, a policy alternative is to slow the rate of urban population growth by encouraging people to remain on the land. Efforts to do this by means of land reform and colonization programs have has little effect -primarily due to lack of financing.
Other possibilities for improving the rural employment base include the intensification of small-scale agriculture through the introduction of modern technology and the opening of new or no longer used agricultural lands. All of these methods, if they are to significantly affect demographic patterns will require financing on an extremely large scale. Such financing is likely to be available only if the population growth and, particularly, rural-urban migration, becomes such a threat to the governments in power they are compelled to invest in rural land programs as a first national priority.


Final session o/ the Land Policies Workshop
















Scarcity



and choice,



the problems



with public



works





Members of the Public Works Workshop included co-chairmen Dr. Weston Agor, Assistant Professor of Political Science, and Dr. William Tyler, Assistant Professor of Economics; Dr. Andris Suhrez, Professor of Latin American Studies and Political Science, as a staff member; guests Dr. Francine Rabinowitz, Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of California, Los Angeles, Dr. Fuat Andic, Professor at the University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras, and of the Caribbean Research Institutes, and Ing. Jos6 Joaquin Hungria M., Director of the Instituto Geogrdfico Universitario, Santo Domingo; and graduate students Clement Bezold, as rapporteur, Stephen Dudazik and William Salisbury. The following is an abstract of the report made after the final workshop session held February 21, 1972.


The process of urbanization and the importance of the government sector in urban growth are intricate and complex. To examine the many aspects involved without at least an implicit methodology is to invite scholarly disaster. Model building offers some promise. More specifically, different problems call for different methodological approaches. A truly comprehensive analysis of urban problems must draw on the methodologies of all the social sciences.

In discussing possible research projects dealing with public policy and urbanization, the workshop was primarily concerned with public works.

The development of social indicators has'received much attention in the United States; less attention has been paid to such research in. Latin America. Little effort has been expended in specifically developing indicators of urban performance.

The value of developing indicators of urban performance is primarily a practical one. The existence of better performance indicators will assist policy-makers in evaluating different projects or expenditure proposals and could lead to better decision making.

It is unrealistic to say the quality of life in cities is a function of size, although within a certain cultural and sociological content, many things related to the quality of life are indeed related to city size. Although the total urban network should be concentrated on, city size may be a useful concept for the planner.

If it is determined that the primate city is too large or growing too fast, the growth of secondary cities should be encouraged. Secondary poles of growth can be established and promoted with proper governmental policy.

It is frequently alleged that Latin America is "over-urbanized." Such allegations are based upon comparisons of the present-day Latin American situation with the historical experiences witnessed in Western Europe and the United States.

Overwhelmingly, the population growth of Latin American cities is due


to migration to the urban areas. It is by no means clear that such migration and urban growth should be curtailed.

Research should be carried out concerning the determinants of migration. To frame policy affecting migration it is essential to have a more complete understanding of such factors as the provision of public services, wage differentials and employment probabilities.

Two methodologies are available: one can utilize survey research techniques. Migrants can be interviewed to ascertain their reasons for moving to the city. Such an approach could also be used to glean a wealth of other information from the migrants concerning their attitudes, values, income, outlook and education. A second methodology involves the use of regression analysis. Information gathered from available censuses and other sources could be analized to statistically estimate the importance of various factors in determining migration. Ideally, a concerted research effort should employ both methodologies as complements.

The need for a systematic way in which to evaluate projects involving the expenditure of government funds evolves out of one fundamental and important fact-scarcity. The study of scarcity and choice is the core of economics. As such, it is possible to utilize some existing economic tools when considering the problem of project evaluation.

A meaningful way to approach the problem of choice among expenditure alternatives is available in the use of cost-benefits analysis. This approach entails a quantitative comparison of benefits and costs, both discounted over the life of the project. Clearly, conceptual and statistical problems are apparent, particularly on the benefit side. Nevertheless, costbenefit analysis provides a framework for an objective evaluation of different expanditure alternatives. Cost-benefit analysis only provides a guide to the decision maker. Other things must be considered in conjunction. Many factors are impervious to quantification but may be absolutely- essential in evaluating the project.
Relevant for researchis an analysis







of what realistically can be done by Latin American governments. Countries like the Dominican Republic and Costa Rica are restrained by a number of variables which appear to limit the capacity of the state to complete even high priority projects. Some of the most significant restraints appear to be: 1) prime product dependence and price fluctuation; 2) influence of international power contenders which served as a key source of financing during the development decade of the 1960s; 3) limited size of the national budget and more limited local budgets; 4) dependence by local on national governments for both financing andpersonnel forproject implementation; and 5) weak taxing power of both national and local governments.
Given the limited capacity of the state to implement all the projects requested, important for research and evaluation is an analysis of why there are so few plans which spell out the linkage between public works and services and thepatterns of urban development and why the plans that do exist fail to be adequately implemented. In the workshop discussions, a number of explanatory variables were isolated for future research:
e Presidents do not appear to be as capable as conventionally thought to be to implementplans, even when they wish to. A president must somehow balance the demands of international power contenders and domestic elites. The outcome of this process is few plans, poor plans and limited plan implementation.
9 Planning agencies lack data, staff and at times "the will" to plan. They frequently engage in fights among themselves, thereby dissipating their own resources necessary for plan preparation and implementation.
* Factors such as the role of Congress


in the process (primarily Costa Rica), importance of autonomous agencies, size and preferences of the private sector as compared with the public sector, quality of the public administration at the national and local levels also demand research in this context.
Research specifying the actual organization, structure and capacity of the public administrative system in the Dominican Republic and Costa Rica -particularly as it affects patterns of urban growth would appear to be of the highest priority. Some specific topics suggested were: 1)politics of the budgetary process for urban and municipal government; 2) autonomous agencies and the patterns of urban growth in Costa Rica and the Dominican Republic; 3) municipal administration in the Dominican Republic (there is one study on this subject for Costa Rica, but it excludes San Jose'); 4) attitudes of local administrators and councilmen towards public works and services projects; 5) detailed survey and analysis of the impact of autonomous agencies, planning agencies, local representatives and administrators and legislatures on the pattern of urban growth.
We recommend a number of specific research projects which would add political and social variables to economic cost-benefit analysis:
Gather and incorporate in cost-benefit analysis the following "political data": 1) perceptions of political elites of the impact of public works and services projects on generating support, stability, instability or violence for their regime; 2) perception of power contenders (unions, political party leaders, military, migrant leaders, urban guerrillas) of public works and service projects; 3) voting patterns, party identification or affiliation of the citizenry.


Adapt and adopt the economic tech. nique of "shadow pricing" where the "free market'' of political pricing does not appear to be in operation-that is, where there are no public votes, where unions are not allowed and where political parties are outlawed.


Dr. Weston Agor, Assistant Professor of Political Science, gave a paper at the International Studies Association Convention held in Dallas, Texas, March 15-18, 1972. The title of his panel presentation was "Chile: Successful and Unsuccessful Attempts at Alteration of Major Political Institutions and Assessment of Resulting Developmental Policy Outcomes." At the American Society for Public Administration Conference, held in New York, N.Y., March 21-24, 1972, Dr. Agor presented a panel paper entitled "Local Government and Administration in Latin America: A Summary of Research Findings in the 1960's and a Recommended Agenda for the 1970's." This paper will soon be published in the Latin American Development Administration Committee Occassional Papers Series for 1972.

Dr. John V. D. Saunders, Professor of Sociology, will serve as acting president of the Latin American Studies Association during the months of April and June 1972.


Center for Latin American Studies


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