Urban Morphology: Locating the Informal Sectors in Davao City

AUTHOR/S:  Arnold A. Abejaron, Epifania Melba L. Manapol, Mildred M. Estanda, Diane G. Taganas, Ma. Teresa C. dela Rosa, Glenn D. Depra


KEYWORDS: urban morphology; informal sectors; remote sensing


This study aimed to understand the conditions of those in the informal sector in Davao City by establishing baseline data on their socio-demographic and economic profile. It sought to map out and determine their location, define the activities that they are engaged in and do a spatial analysis of their livelihoods in relation to their migration and spatial distribution. It also aimed to find ways by which the informal sectors may be strengthened.

The study used a combined approach of survey using multi-stage sampling in the selection of respondents, mapping and remote sensing techniques with the use of ortho-ready standard imagery. Open street map images for deriving geospatial information on the location of the informal sectors and their business operations, as well as Google earth images for examining the urban morphology through time were also used, respectively.

The study showed that many of the informal sectors in Davao City do not own the land where their houses are built as many of them came from the various parts of the Philippines. Possessing various skills, many of the respondent informal sectors reside and locate themselves where human traffic and activity happen. The proximity of the place of their residence to their place of work is relatively within a kilometer radius. The study also showed that with the way the informal sectors in Davao City are located and dispersed, they are vulnerable to natural and humaninduced hazards.

The study recommends that efforts be made to allow the informal sectors to have their own land and that they be relocated to areas free from disaster or that disaster-mitigating measures be put in place. With the rapid change in the urban landscape of Davao City, the study recommends for a clear and standardized policy in the barangays regulating the setting up of structures and conduct of economic activities to ensure sustainability of development and the environment.


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