Commercial Developers

1 June_Splitting up in sub-groups

On the first day of the simulation, students in the Commercial Developers group decided to split up in three sub-groups: Korean, Tanzanian and Local developers. They were quite excited with the idea of coming up with logos and mottos but quite challenged at the same time by thinking about a ‘sustainable city’ from the point of view of their own sub-group.


2015-06-01 15.20.47The Korean developers want to push forward the “Harbour of Dreams” project. Students reflect on how to manage economic growth and at the same time remain accountable for the environmental and the social dimensions without affecting their earnings.


2015-06-01 15.19.50Students in the Tanzanian Developers sub-group are very confident that they can do business the “Tanzanian” way (e.g. taking the local culture in regard), thereby harnessing it as a competitive advantage towards a more sustainable Dar es Salaam.


2015-06-01 14.55.48Students in the Local Developers sub-group watch Dr Strato Mosher video and later debate that there should be a good balance between ‘cheap’ and good quality housing as a way towards sustainability.


2 June_Developing personal characters

Based on yesterday’s exercise, students had developed their company’s business cards. They came up with logos and slogans. Today, they developed their personal characters and added the info to their business cards. The three companies in the commercial developers group are called: “Echo Development” (Korean Developers); “Tanzania Development” (Tanzanian developers) and “Maisha Bora” (local developers). Many of these business characters are local but some are expats and others just plain foreigners. They made quite a good impression with their professional business cards during the networking event, hopefully no many promises were made!


3 June_Identifying collective resources and capacities

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Echo Development (Korean developers) is prioritising economic growth as a sustainable path for Dar es Salaam. During the prioritising exercise and SWOT analysis today, the students identified that in order to cope with some of their weaknesses and threats, they might need to ally with either or both Maisha Bora (local developers) and Tanzania Development. They don’t know the local culture and it is not their business to provide for the needs of the local low income residents of Dar es Salaam which might bring them bad press hence alliances seem to be necessary for now.



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Tanzania Development is targeting economic equality as a way towards sustainability. For students, this means providing low income as well as high income housing as a profitable business strategy. They do recognize they do not have an environmental approach. They consider using the high margins from the rich housing to be able to work with the poor in order to preserve what they perceive as ‘their good image’ because they are locals. However, students from Echo Development commented that in fact they are the ones that might be perceived as less prone to corruption since they are not used to work with the intricacies of the local bureaucracy.



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Students playing the local developers, Maisha Bora, are aiming to tackle the needs of the residents evicted or in threat of eviction from Kurasini so they might be competing for the same market with Tanzania Development. They are not so sure for now if that’ll be the case or if in fact they might consider an alliance. At the same time, they were challenging Echo Development in regards to whether commercial and luxury developments will increase the vulnerability of local commercial shops and other local businesses in the port expansion area.


4 June_Storyboarding

Students spent the afternoon storyboarding for a 5 minute video in order to present themselves to the other stakeholders. Their video was called “Commercial Developers, working to build a sustainable Dar es Salaam”. Each one of the three subgroups presented their differentiated position towards this same target or goal. While the Korean developers (Echo Development) presented just their CEO, the other groups presented each member as a way to engage with a more ‘local’ context.

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5 June_Open negotiations

The first half of the session went really well with students engaging in their roles while negotiating with other stakeholders for the first time. They found some possibilities for alliances as well as constraints. some interesting possibilities for alliances within the Commercial Developers group came up!! The second half of the session was less encouraging with them having to interrupt the negotiations to make a presentation on Global Citizenship. However, at the end they became enthusiastic about the fact that they were presenting their experiences of the week to the other strands.

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8 June_Back to negotiations

Under the principles of ‘Right to the City’, students tried to identified potential alliances. The Tanzania Develoment group stayed in the room, the ‘Spatial Justice’ one, but when visited by the Kurasini residents, they realised their idea of ‘spatial justice’ was actually different from the Kurasini residents’ and thought about aligning under a different principle and targeting a different market, Chamazi residents. The Korean and the Local Developers decided to make an alliance to actually serve the needs of the Kurasini residents and they called a press conference which they thought would happen on Wednesday but it would actually take place tomorrow!!!



9 June_Communication Tactics

A press conference was held today in the Commercial Developers room. The Korean and the local developers announced an alliance to provide land and affordable housing for Kurasini residents within the port development area. Students from all the other stakeholders group were present and it was interesting to see how tensions arose as a result of all being in the room discussing one specific issue. Until today, negotiations had taken place partially and there was not enough awareness of the ‘big picture’. The students in the Tanzania Development sub-group step aside. Although present at some point in the press conference, they decided on a one-page spread in the special edition of the national newspaper to announce their intentions to offer the Chamazi population with affordable housing and commercial spaces.