The Kenyan Rift Valley (KRV) is an exceptional region to exemplify the spatial heterogeneity, the socio-economic challenges, as well as the opportunities for Kenya and in a bigger perspective for many (east) African countries. Its importance is first of all based on its sheer size and spatial configuration: Spanning from the northwest to the south of Kenya, the Rift Valley accounts for 23% of the Kenyan land mass. The ambitious Kenya Vision 2030 aims to improve the prosperity of all Kenyans whilst building a just and cohesive society by developing flagship projects to induce economic growth and social transformation. Since 2013, the KRV has been strongly shaped by one of the most important flagship projects of this agenda. LAPSSET intersects especially with the central and northern parts of the Rift Valley and is discussed as being a transformative game changer for the region. KRV and LAPSSET are examples of fragmented intensification with historically and economically diverse processes of transformation. With the future vision of exploiting geothermal (and wind) energy as well as fresh water resources for establishing a cut-flower and export-oriented field vegetable industry in the KRV, investments in infrastructure (i.e. road constructions linking Narok in the south to Chemolingot in the north) provide access to national and international markets, and foster investments in other infrastructure measures along the corridor, but also attract investors, developing the value chain for agricultural products. Such developments provide a strong pull for labor in-migration, intensified crop agriculture and the sedentarization of pastoralists.
British Institute in Eastern Africa
National Museums of Kenya
United States International University