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1997 Indonesian elections Megawatti supporters Boys working on Bantar Gerbang Final Disposal site Boys swim in polluted Jakarta river "Kaki Lima" food vendor takes a rest Man & child in one room family house Girl plays on train tracks in Northern Jakarta Boys throw stones at Suharto supporters Lady boy blows kiss "Hawker" trying to sell language book Man in Central Jakarta slum area Jakarta family living next to railway Jakarta family living next to railway Jakarta family living next to railway Jakarta family man shows off baby Megawatti supporter shows off Sukarno picture 1997 "PPP" Leader on tour of Central Jakarta Woman outside home in Central Jakarta Central Jakarta woman dries rice outside home Elderly lady living in makeshift home Anti-President Suharto protestors burn banner

JAKARTA LIFE

THROUGH MOST OF HISTORY HUMAN KIND HAS LIVED A RURAL LIFESTYLE DEPENDANT ON AGRICULTURE AND HUNTING FOR SURVIVAL. IN THE 1800’S ONLY 3% OF HUMANITY LIVED IN URBAN ENVIRONMENTS BUT THIS GRADUALLY CHANGE WITH INCREASING INDUSTRIALISATION IN THE EARLY 1900S WHERE 14% OF THE WORLDS POPULATION LIVED IN A CITY.

Just after the 2nd World War urban population grew steadily to 30% but more recently with the many changing states of human interaction via globalization etc, an unprecedented urban growth has arisen where 47% of the Worlds population now live in urban environments. To date there are over 400 cities around the World with over 1 million people.

The largest of the Worlds cities called “Mega Cities” are mainly occurring in less developed countries around the World where people flock most eagerly to one or two urban areas of that Nation. This is a Photo story about one such Mega City called Jakarta the capital of Indonesia, it is part of a larger body of work in progress about Mega City life around the World.

With Jakarta’s rate of growth overall being 4% annually and with a higher expansion rate of 18% in the slum areas urbanisation has become a constant headache to the Jakarta administration as the city has neither enough jobs nor enough housing to shelter new urbanites. In 1960 the population of Jakarta was 2.7 million by 1995 it had exploded to 11.5 million and by the 2015 Jakarta is estimated to have a population well over 35 million. If the migrants to the city were all young professionals and entrepreneurs bring in skills and wealth, absorbing them would be easy enough but the large majority of newcomers are poor with little education and large families to support. These are people who more often than not have found it increasingly difficult to earn a living from the rural countryside due to the mechanisation of agriculture. They travel to the city expecting a better life but have no choice in many cases than to live in self made homes without running water or toilets in the many rubbish strewn slum areas of Jakarta with not much chance of well paid work to support their families.

Even with the fall of President Suharto’s 32 year tyrannical leadership in 1997 help for the slum dwellers and actions on solutions for the problems of this mega city seem sparse.