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Article
Publication date: 1 April 1986

Cedric Pugh

It was not until the late 1960s that housing attracted much attention from academic social scientists. Since that time the literature has expanded widely and diversified…

Abstract

It was not until the late 1960s that housing attracted much attention from academic social scientists. Since that time the literature has expanded widely and diversified, establishing housing with a specialised status in economics, sociology, politics, and in related subjects. As we would expect, the new literature covers a technical, statistical, theoretical, ideological, and historical range. Housing studies have not been conceived and interpreted in a monolithic way, with generally accepted concepts and principles, or with uniformly fixed and precise methodological approaches. Instead, some studies have been derived selectively from diverse bases in conventional theories in economics or sociology, or politics. Others have their origins in less conventional social theory, including neo‐Marxist theory which has had a wider intellectual following in the modern democracies since the mid‐1970s. With all this diversity, and in a context where ideological positions compete, housing studies have consequently left in their wake some significant controversies and some gaps in evaluative perspective. In short, the new housing intellectuals have written from personal commitments to particular cognitive, theoretical, ideological, and national positions and experiences. This present piece of writing takes up the two main themes which have emerged in the recent literature. These themes are first, questions relating to building and developing housing theory, and, second, the issue of how we are to conceptualise housing and relate it to policy studies. We shall be arguing that the two themes are closely related: in order to create a useful housing theory we must have awareness and understanding of housing practice and the nature of housing.

Details

International Journal of Social Economics, vol. 13 no. 4/5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0306-8293

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Book part
Publication date: 7 August 2017

Aidan Mosselson

This chapter provides a critical examination of the urban renewal process currently taking place in inner-city Johannesburg. It evaluates the effects of an approach to…

Abstract

Purpose

This chapter provides a critical examination of the urban renewal process currently taking place in inner-city Johannesburg. It evaluates the effects of an approach to providing social housing which blends commercial, market-based practices with state intervention and regulation and discusses the implications these competing imperatives have for the area and academic understandings of urban renewal.

Methodology/approach

Findings are based on a qualitative research process, carried out over 9 months in inner-city Johannesburg. Research involved interviews with property developers, housing providers, government officials, and tenants living in renovated social and affordable housing developments.

Findings

The process is contradictory and overburdened, and attempts to fulfill competing goals and agendas. Some developmental ambitions are being realized as the supply of social and affordable housing is expanding. However, the benefits are limited, as poor communities are being displaced and, in many cases, commercial concerns trump social and developmental considerations.

Social implications

Findings highlight the ways in which a range of political circumstances, policy decisions, and spatial conditions combine to create an approach to renewal which is neither entirely neoliberal nor developmental. The case study complicates narratives which stress the global dominance of neoliberal approaches to urban renewal and demonstrates that alternative developmental ambitions exist alongside commercial practices.

Originality/value

The chapter highlights the ambiguity and hybridity of localized approaches to housing provision. In doing so it adds nuance to debates about urban processes around the globe and draws attention back to the uncertainty, agency, and diversity which are continuously shaping urban societies.

Details

Social Housing and Urban Renewal
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-124-7

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Book part
Publication date: 7 August 2017

Chikako Mori

Based on a case study of the pre-2020 Olympics renewal project in the city-center of Tokyo, this chapter examines the nature and impacts of urban renewal conducted by the…

Abstract

Purpose

Based on a case study of the pre-2020 Olympics renewal project in the city-center of Tokyo, this chapter examines the nature and impacts of urban renewal conducted by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government (TMG) in relation to social housing.

Methodology/approach

A qualitative case study approach is used based on interviews (with different stakeholders), and participant observation (at various local events or public assemblies) to analyze the impact of such urban renewal on social housing and its community.

Findings

The TMG has promoted urban renewal of city government-owned land in public-private partnerships by defending these projects as “win-win-win strategy among residents-business-city.” However, at the same time it has worsened the housing conditions of residents by causing their displacement or the deterioration of their housing environment.

Social implications

The chapter shows us that the TMG’s justification for the urban renewal — would produce trickle-down effects and help the residents — doesn’t reflect what is really happening to the community. This will help us to have a better understanding of the reality and to critically discuss a more just urban and housing policy.

Originality/value

The chapter provides a complex insight on the “super-residualization” of social housing in Japan, characterized not only by the decrease in its number but also urban renewal providing business services and amenities for the middle and upper classes. This provides an interesting comparison with Western societies.

Details

Social Housing and Urban Renewal
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-124-7

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Article
Publication date: 14 February 2019

Luis Raúl Rodríguez-Reyes, Carlos Omar Trejo-Pech and Mireya Pasillas-Torres

The Mexican housing industry was hindered by a shrinking market and tighter financial conditions related to the Great Recession. Moreover, in 2013, a major change in…

Abstract

Purpose

The Mexican housing industry was hindered by a shrinking market and tighter financial conditions related to the Great Recession. Moreover, in 2013, a major change in public policy further modified this industry’s environment. Mexico’s new urban development policy supported inner-city new housing, in contrast to the previous policy that incentivized sprawling. Three out of eight publicly traded housing companies filed for bankruptcy protection in 2013-2014, arguably because of the effects of the Great Recession and the new housing policy. The purpose of this study is to identify firm-level factors that caused some firms to file for bankruptcy protection.

Design/methodology/approach

Three approaches were used to analyze the housing industry in Mexico from 2006 to 2015. First, a policy analysis focused on the new housing policy and its consequences for housebuilding companies. Second, a financial analysis of the two economic shocks was performed in search for the transmission mechanisms in the companies’ financial metrics. Third, a retrospective analysis using the Fisher’s exact test was used to identify variables statistically associated with companies filing for bankruptcy protection.

Findings

There are two features significantly associated with bankruptcy protection: increasing market share while being vertically integrated, as a response to the Great Recession, and the relative magnitude of the loss on firms’ inventory value due to the new public policy. Neither Altman’s Z-score values nor firm size or degree of integration are significantly related to bankruptcy.

Research limitations/implications

The small sample size presented a challenge, as most statistical methodologies require large samples; however, this was overcome by using the Fisher’s exact test.

Originality/value

The main contribution of this paper is the statistical identification of the possible causes for bankruptcy protection in Mexico amongst homebuilding firms in 2013 and 2014, which have not previously been reported in the literature.

Details

International Journal of Housing Markets and Analysis, vol. 12 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1753-8270

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Book part
Publication date: 18 February 2008

Bruce Judd and Bill Randolph

Urban renewal through the regeneration and redevelopment of public housing estates has become a major policy initiative in most Australian state housing authorities since…

Abstract

Urban renewal through the regeneration and redevelopment of public housing estates has become a major policy initiative in most Australian state housing authorities since the mid-1990s. These policies have involved a mix of both physical renewal and community development in response to the problems that have emerged in the public housing sector over the past two decades. While the origins of these problems are well established and reflect the changes experienced by public housing sectors in other comparable countries (Hayward, 1996; Peel, 1995), the impact of policies to address these problems in the Australian context has attracted less attention in the academic literature (Arthurson, 1998; Randolph & Judd, 2000). While there is an emerging body of evaluation and research that has attempted to assess the outcomes of renewal programmes and policies, it can be argued that there is still a relatively poor level of general understanding of what aspects of renewal are effective or what outcomes have actually been achieved. At the same time, there has been little effective development of an exchange between researchers or evaluators on the effectiveness of the various evaluation methodologies – qualitative and quantitative – that have been used to assess renewal policies. This is particularly evident at the national level (Spiller Gibbin Swan, 2000).

Details

Qualitative Urban Analysis: An International Perspective
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-7623-1368-6

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Book part
Publication date: 13 October 2008

Paul J. Maginn, Susan Thompson and Matthew Tonts

This chapter, together with those that follow, builds upon the ideas presented in the previous volume in this series (Maginn, Thompson, & Tonts, 2008). There we outlined…

Abstract

This chapter, together with those that follow, builds upon the ideas presented in the previous volume in this series (Maginn, Thompson, & Tonts, 2008). There we outlined our vision for a ‘pragmatic renaissance’ in contemporary qualitative research in urban studies. We argued that to survive as an effective and frequently used tool for policy development, a more systematic approach is needed in the way that qualitative-informed applied urban research is conceptualised and undertaken. In opening this volume we build on these initial ideas using housing as a meta-case study to progress the case for a systematic approach to qualitative research methods. We do this to both stimulate broad debate about the ways, in which qualitative research in urban/housing scholarship might be of greater use to policymakers and practitioners, as well as to suggest a way forward in realising the ‘pragmatic renaissance’.

Details

Qualitative Housing Analysis: An International Perspective
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84663-990-6

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Book part
Publication date: 5 November 2016

Micol Bronzini and Carla Moretti

The chapter aims to analyze an innovative intervention in the context of public housing in Italy. Over the past decade, in Italy, neighborhoods with a high concentration…

Abstract

The chapter aims to analyze an innovative intervention in the context of public housing in Italy. Over the past decade, in Italy, neighborhoods with a high concentration of public housing have increasingly become spaces of exclusion, where conflicts are rife, due to a multiplicity of factors (e.g., immigration, social deprivation, ageing, health problems). In particular, because of the global economic crisis and the impoverishment of Italian families, competition and quarrels between lower middle-class natives and migrants have been exacerbated, undermining the recent fragile pattern of social cohesion. However, housing and urban policies are still residual, especially in the political agenda of mid-sized towns, which witness an ungoverned urban growth not always accompanied by a concurrent complete recognition of citizenship. Moreover, policies tackling rising social tension to reduce or prevent it are lacking. Nonetheless, at a local level, some more dynamic municipalities are starting to promote original initiatives also thanks to the sharing of the best national and international practices. In particular we wish to focus on the social mediation processes implemented to prevent conflict and promote sustainable cohabitation, improving relationships between neighbors and fostering empowerment and participation. In this perspective, the chapter explores a two-year project of social mediation for households living in public housing which has been developed in the Marche region.

Details

Public Spaces: Times of Crisis and Change
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-463-1

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Article
Publication date: 7 July 2015

Jolanta Aidukaite and Christian Fröhlich

The purpose of this paper is to explore urban mobilisation patterns in two post-Soviet cities: Vilnius and Moscow. Both cities were subject to similar housing and urban

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore urban mobilisation patterns in two post-Soviet cities: Vilnius and Moscow. Both cities were subject to similar housing and urban policy during Soviet times, and they have implemented urban development using neoliberal market principles, provoking grassroots opposition from citizens to privatisation and marketisation of their housing environment and local public space. However, the differing conditions of democratic Lithuanian and authoritarian Russian public governance offer different opportunities and set different constraints for neighbourhood mobilisation. The purpose is to contrast local community mobilisations under the two regimes and highlight the differences between and similarities in the activists’ repertoires of actions in two distinct political and economic urban settings.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper employs qualitative methodology using data from semi-structured interviews conducted with community activists and state officials, presented using a comparative case study design.

Findings

Although, citizens’ mobilisations in the two cities are reactions to the neoliberalisation of housing and local public space, they take different forms. In Vilnius they are institutionalised and receive formal support from national and local authorities. Moreover, support from the EU encourages organisational development and provides material and cognitive resources for grassroots urban mobilisations. In contrast, residents’ mobilisations in Moscow are informal and face fierce opposition from local authorities. However, even in an authoritarian setting, grassroots mobilisations evolve using creative strategies to circumvent institutional constraints.

Originality/value

Little attention has been paid to grassroots urban mobilisations in post-Soviet cities. There is also a lack of comparative attempts to show variation in post-Soviet urban activism related to housing and local public space.

Details

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. 35 no. 7/8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2016

Beatriz C. Maturana and Ralph Horne

Social integration is an important goal of contemporary urban policy in Chile. Using the concept of conviviality understood as the “art of living in community” (Esteva…

Abstract

Social integration is an important goal of contemporary urban policy in Chile. Using the concept of conviviality understood as the “art of living in community” (Esteva, 2012), this work analyses two socially integrated housing developments in Chile. This paper argues that materially interspersing different socioeconomic groups within housing developments is insufficient on its own to achieve the objectives of social integration espoused in the national urban policy. In particular, it leaves aside community and cultural processes and therefore neglects considerations of inclusion, equity, and conviviality. Furthermore, it is insufficient on its own in meeting sustainable cities and quality of life objectives of the National Urban Development Policy. As a result, we raise critical questions for the implementation of national policy objectives to combat the segregation of cities. The concept of assessing conviviality is proposed as a means to further understand social integration.

Details

Open House International, vol. 41 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0168-2601

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Book part
Publication date: 7 August 2017

Manuela Olagnero and Irene Ponzo

Based on a case study of conversion of real estate complexes built in Turin at the time of the 2006 Winter Olympic Games into public and subsidized housing, the chapter…

Abstract

Purpose

Based on a case study of conversion of real estate complexes built in Turin at the time of the 2006 Winter Olympic Games into public and subsidized housing, the chapter compares policy goals aimed at producing social mix through the mixing of housing tenure, with actual outcomes and thus identifies possible advantages, challenges, and pitfalls of this kind of intervention.

Methodology/approach

The analysis is based on a survey and semi-structured interviews with residents, in-depth interviews with key actors, and observation of daily interactions in public and shared places.

Findings

Regeneration policies and tenure mix seem to be most effective at preventing neighborhood stigmatization and attract private investments in facility development (area-based effects), but not to be “automatically” a source of mixed social relations and positive role models able to limit socially disapproved behaviors (people-based effects).

Social implications

The practical lesson which can be drawn from this chapter is that the achievement of people-based effects requires long-standing actions which go beyond the construction and allocation of new apartments.

Originality/value

The chapter engages critically with the idea that built environment has deterministic effects on social environment, and social mix resulted from regeneration and housing policies can work as a catch-all solution for activating and rehabilitating human and social resources in the target area. Specifically, we show how these processes require particular organizational and policy conditions that cannot be taken for granted.

Details

Social Housing and Urban Renewal
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-124-7

Keywords

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