Research

“Globalizing an African City: The Case of Mall Development in Accra, Ghana”

This is a mixed-methods study that uses ethnographic observation, interviews, historical methods, and content analysis to examine Ghana’s first “world-class” shopping mall. This mall has been credited for jumpstarting a push to reinvent Accra, Ghana’s capital, as a regional business hub for West Africa, and for ushering in a new paradigm of development in urban Ghana focused primarily on the provision of high-end, consumption-oriented amenities. The project examines the perspectives of diverse stakeholders connected with the development of high-end real estate, especially retail, in Accra, including real estate developers, city officials, workers, business owners, and consumers, while also considering the evolution of urban development strategies in Accra since Ghana’s independence from Great Britain in 1957.