Emily Strong

Emily Strong
Personnel Type

I am a student researcher from Canada. After completing my bachelor’s degree in International Development Studies in Canada in 2014, I have had a wide variety of work experience, including a three-year role with an innovative software company that facilitates corporate charitable giving in Calgary, Canada, and an 8-month internship with a youth development hub in Surabaya, Indonesia.

I am now living in Utrecht, The Netherlands and completing my Geography Master’s in International Development at Utrecht University. My field study research in Uganda is in collaboration with the Urban Action Lab and will look at the differentiated impact of development corridors on local communities. Inherent to most large-scale infrastructure is the displacement of local populations. This fact, coupled with an increased interest in development corridors from the international development community and investors mean that the implications for the livelihoods of local communities is of paramount importance. Development corridors are thought to be a means of sustainable development and economic growth, with benefits expected to trickle-down. However, these benefits are not shared equally. While local communities are often considered as homogenous groups, individuals within a community are positioned very differently to benefit from development corridors and in their capacity to cope with displacement and pursue sustainable livelihoods.

As such, the objective of my research is to explore how the experiences of local communities affected by the construction of the Kampala Jinja Expressway are differentiated by power-dynamics during the pre-displacement phase. I aim to give voice to the diversity of interests and aspirations within a local community, understand how people have been included in project planning and contribute to an understanding of livelihood restoration that considers the complexity of local needs. This research will be qualitative and allow for the social impacts of displacement to be analyzed from the bottom-up perspective of intra-community local stakeholders.