Social Capital and the Informal Vendor Economy in the Dollarized Zimbabwe: a Case of Mucheke Suburbs in Masvingo Urban.

Savemore Marapira

Abstract


The dollarization of the Zimbabwean economy after a decade of economic doldrums has led to a hive of economic
activities in urban space. This research analysed the role of social networking in the sustenance of the livelihoods
of informal vendors in Masvingo urban. It also examined the challenges faced by informal vendors in sustaining
their livelihoods and the ways used by informal vendors to ameliorate their situation. Informal vendingis a major
livelihood strategy despite being relegated to the periphery. Social capital becomes valuable in sustaining vendors’
livelihoods and transcending the problems they face in sustaining their livelihoods. This study accentuated the
need to promote, educate and empower informal vendors to enjoy the gains of the informal sector in the larger
economy. This was a qualitative ethnographic study; utilising unstructured interviews, focus group discussions
and secondary sources to harvest data, while participants were chosen on the basis of convenience.

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