(Re)interpreting vulnerabilities in the peri-urban Valley of Mexico : toward a deeper and more actionable understanding of poverty in Mexico City’s urban fringe
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Settlement patterns on the urban fringe can present a host of threats to sociopolitical and biophysical sustainability, at the personal, municipal, and ecosystem scale. Mexico City’s expansive growth has forced the region’s poorest inhabitants to the farthest margins in the neighboring State of Mexico, where they often live in conditions of personal hardship and settle in patterns that threaten the ecological health of environmentally sensitive areas. Following interviews with practitioners in three periurban municipalities in the Valley of Mexico, this report examines how local land use regulators interpret the vulnerabilities facing communities in their jurisdictions and presents a typology of vulnerabilities. The report explores the processes of politicization that produce and re-produce the vulnerabilities facing individuals, communities and ecosystems. Several concrete policy recommendations are made for incorporating holistic thinking about vulnerability into government decision-making, and resources are provided for further research.