1 Department of Planning and Development, Kisii University, Kisii, Kenya

2 Department of Urban and Regional Planning, School of Built Environment, University of Nairobi, Nairobi, Kenya


Although previous studies have attempted to address the challenge of land subdivision, there is still a scarcity in the literature on how the extent of conformity to land subdivision planning regulations may be statistically and spatially analyzed. This study, therefore, explores the extent to which residential developers comply with land subdivision planning regulations in Kenya, a case study of Kisii Town. It was guided by the public interest theory of regulation with a target population of 7,430 residential developments from the seven sublocation neighbourhoods of Kisii Town. Four administrative sublocations were used as strata out of which proportional random samples were drawn from their respective residential neighbourhoods to attain a sample size of 364. Structured checklists were used to collect data on the extent of conformity. Results revealed that although the recommended minimum plot size in Jogoo, Nyamataro and Nyanchwa neighbourhoods was 0.1 ha, 84%, 100% and 88% of developers did not respectively comply. Further, although the recommended minimum plot size for Egesa, Daraja Mbili, Mwembe and Nyamage neighbourhoods was 0.05 ha, 83%, 46%, 58% and 63% of developers failed to, in that order, comply. The problem continues notwithstanding the legal framework that grants the County Government of Kisii powers of development control. Key recommendations comprised establishing a coordinating committee to harmonize agencies that deal with land subdivisions and ensuring that only registered persons’ process of land subdivisions. This study generally benefits international readers by highlighting how compliance with recommended land subdivision planning regulations may be statistically and spatially analyzed.


Main Subjects

Agheyisi, J.E., (2016). Evaluating the conformity of informal land subdivision with the planning law in Benin metropolis. Land Use Policy, 59: 602–612 (11 pages).

Agheyisi, J.E., (2018). Land Subdivision in peri‐urban areas of Sub‐Saharan African Cities: Conceptual definitions and policy guidelines. Ghana J. Geogr., 10 (1): 98–128 (31 pages).

Baruch, Y., (1999). Response rate in academic studies – A Comparative analysis. Hum. Relat., 52 (4): 421- 438 (18 pages).

Ben-Joseph, E.; Phelan, K., (2005). Regulating subdivisions in Massachusetts practices and outlooks: A survey of public officials in Massachusetts (50 pages).

Boob, N.; Rao, Y.R.N., (2014). Zoning within plot–an approach to land subdivision to control violation of development control rules. Int. J. Multidiscip. Curr. Res., 2: 90-98 (9 pages).

Cengiz, A.E., (2013). Impacts of improper land uses in cities on the natural environment and ecological landscape planning. In Ozyavuz, M., (Ed), Advances in Landscape Architecture, 19-52 (34 pages).

Chitonge, H.; Mfune, O., (2015). The urban land question in Africa: The case of urban land conflicts in the City of Lusaka, 100 years after its founding. Habitat Int., 48: 209–218 (10 pages).

County Government of Kisii (2013). Kisii County integrated development plan, 2013-2017 (289 pages).

Encyclopedia Britannica, (2011). Kenya (1 page).  

Escamilla, V.; Emch, M.; Dandalo, L.; Miller, W.; Martinson, F.; Hoffman, F., (2014). Sampling at the community level by using satellite imagery and geographical analysis. Bull. World Health Organ., 690–694 (5 pages).

FAO/UNEP, (1997). Negotiating a sustainable future for land: structural and institutional guidelines for land resources management in the 21st century (62 pages).

Ghasemi, A.; Zahedias, S., (2012). Normality tests for statistical analysis: A guide for non-statisticians, Int. J. Endocrinol Metab., 10(2): 486–489 (4 pages).

Hantke-Domas, M., (2003). The Public interest theory of regulation: Non-existence or misinterpretation? Eur. J. Law Econ., 15: 165-194 (30 pages).

Hermunen, T., (2004). Land use policy in Kenya: Experiences from Taita Taveta District. Master’s Thesis, University of Helsinki, Department of Geography (132 pages).

Hoekstra, R.; Kiers, H. A.; Johnson, A., (2012). Are assumptions of well-known statistical techniques checked, and why (not)? Front. Psychol., 3: 137 (9 pages).  

Hubacek, K.; van den Bergh J.C.J.M., (2002). The Role of Land in Economic Theory. IIASA Interim Report. IIASA, Laxenburg, Austria: IR-02-037 (54 pages).

Jin, W.; Zhou, C.; Luo, L., (2018). Impact of land input on economic growth at different stages of development in Chinese cities and regions. Sustainability, 10(8): 2-19 (19 pages).

Kebaso, W.M., (2017). Effects of land subdivisions to food security case study: Kaputiei North- Kajiado County. Unpublished master’s thesis, University of Nairobi (47 pages).

Kiama, P.M., (2015). An Assessment of the impacts of increased land subdivision on water supply infrastructure in Karen-Langata, Nairobi. Unpublished master’s thesis, Kenyatta University (84 pages).  

Krejcie, R.V.; Morgan, D.W., (1970). Determining sample size for research activities. Educ. Psychol Meas. 30:607-610 (4 pages).

Kuma, S., (2017). Land policy and land delivery system in Nigeria (25 pages).

Meterko, M.; Restuccia, J.D.; Stolzmann, K.; Mohr, D.; Brennan, C.; Glasgow, J.; Kaboli, P., (2015). Response rates, nonresponse bias, and data quality: Results from a national survey of senior healthcare leaders. Public Opin. Q., 79 (1):130–144 (15 pages).

Mugenda, A.; Mugenda, O., (2003). Research methods: Quantitative and qualitative approaches. Acts Press: Nairobi (256 pages).

Musambayi, J.M., (2013) The impact of land fragmentation/ segmentation on production and food security (Case study: Three major regions in Kenya). Elixir Agric., 56: 13493-13495 (3 pages).

Museleku, E.K., (2018). Implications of agricultural land subdivision on productivity: A case study of Kajiado County, Kenya. Unpublished master’s thesis, University of Nairobi (245 pages).

Mwangola, A., (2001). Brainstorming/planning Kenya Land Alliance workshop on land policy and land law reforms in Kenya, 22nd 23rd February 2001, Machakos (1 page).

Mwesige, G., (2007). Effects of land tenure on physical planning in Uganda: A Case of Kampala City. Unpublished Masters Dissertation, Makerere University (138 pages).

Natarajan, L., (2017). Socio-spatial learning: A case study of community knowledge in participatory spatial planning. Prog. Plann., 111: 1–23 (23 pages).

Nha, D.V., (2017). The role of land-use planning on socioeconomic development in Mai Chau District, Vietnam. In Van Thanh, M.; Vien, T.D; Leisz, S.J.; Shivakoti, G.P., (Eds.), Redefining diversity and dynamics of natural resources management in Asia, 2:87-111, Elsevier (25 pages).

Oluwatayo, I.B.; Omowunmi, T.; Ojo, A.O., (2019). Land acquisition and use in Nigeria: Implications for sustainable food and livelihood security. In Loures, L. L, (Ed.), Land use - assessing the past, envisioning the future, 87-11, IntechOpen (20 pages).

Omollo, W.O., (2020). Compliance with planning standards related to the setbacks around domestic buildings: Empirical evidence from Kenya. J Contemp Urban Aff., 4(2), 95-108 (14 pages

Pigou, A.C., (1932). The economics of welfare (4th ed.) London: Macmillan (872 pages).

Ram, K.A.; Tsunekawa, A.; Saha, D.K.; Miyazak, T., (1999). Subdivision and fragmentation of landholdings and their implication in desertification in the Thar Desert, India. J. Arid. Environ., 41 (4): 463-477 (15 pages).

Saunders, M.; Lewis, P.; Thornhill, A., (2016). Research methods for business students. Edinburgh: Prentice. Hall (768 pages).

The Republic of Kenya, (2007). Physical Planning Handbook (112 pages).

The Republic of Kenya, (2010). Constitution: Government Printer: Nairobi (194 pages).  

The Republic of Kenya, (2012). Land Control Act (Cap 302): Government Printer: Nairobi (19 pages).  

The Republic of Kenya, (2017a). The Land Registration (General) Regulations, 2017: Government Printer: Nairobi (196 pages).

The Republic of Kenya, (2017b). Sessional No.1 of 2017 on National Land Use Policy (72 pages).

The Republic of Kenya, (2017c). The National Spatial Plan (2015-2045) (269 pages).  

The Republic of Kenya, (2019a). Physical and Land Use Planning Act: Government Printer: Nairobi (page 67).

The Republic of Kenya, (2019b). Kenya Population and Census Survey (270 pages).  

The Republic of Rwanda, (2017). Rwanda National Land Use Planning Guidelines (129 pages).

UN-Habitat (2012). The State of the Worlds Cities 2012/2013 (149 pages).

UN-Habitat, (2013). State of the world’s cities 2012/2013: Prosperity of cities. Nairobi: UN-Habitat (152 pages).

Warner, C., (2015). Participatory mapping: A literature review of community-based research and participatory planning (21 pages).


International Journal of Human Capital in Urban Management (IJHCUM) welcomes letters to the editor for the post-publication discussions and corrections which allows debate post publication on its site, through the Letters to Editor. Letters pertaining to manuscript published in IJHCUM should be sent to the editorial office of IJHCUM within three months of either online publication or before printed publication, except for critiques of original research. Following points are to be considering before sending the letters (comments) to the editor.

[1] Letters that include statements of statistics, facts, research, or theories should include appropriate references, although more than three are discouraged.

[2] Letters that are personal attacks on an author rather than thoughtful criticism of the author’s ideas will not be considered for publication.

[3] Letters can be no more than 300 words in length.

[4] Letter writers should include a statement at the beginning of the letter stating that it is being submitted either for publication or not.

[5] Anonymous letters will not be considered.

[6] Letter writers must include their city and state of residence or work.

[7] Letters will be edited for clarity and length.