Journal of Housing and the Built Environment

Published by Springer Nature

Online ISSN: 1573-7772


Print ISSN: 1566-4910


Life and work of Professor F.M. Dieleman (1942–2005)
  • Article

September 2006


41 Reads


Without Abstract

Dutch Urban Renewal, Transformation of the Policy Discourse 1960–2000

January 2001


50 Reads

Since the sixties of the twentieth century, thepolicy of the Dutch government on urban renewalhas been subject to three approaches, each onedifferent from the others. Up until thebeginning of the seventies, the accent was onthe expansion of the function of the largercities as economic centers. The expansion ofthe inner city for that purpose proceeded atthe expense of the residential function of thebuilt-up area. Later, the main goal was justthe opposite; attention was turned to thequantitative and qualitative reinforcement ofthe urban residential function of the citycenter and its surrounding urban residentialneighborhoods. Under that approach, the accentwas placed on improving the housing conditionsof the `sitting' residents. Accordingly, theconstruction program consisted for the mostpart of social housing that was extrainexpensive. In the course of the nineties,this so-called classic urban renewal approachwas displaced by urban revitalization. The newapproach placed the accent on strengthening thecompetitive position of cities as locations forpromising economic sectors and households withhigher incomes. This article attempts to characterize these`shifts' in policy on the grounds of a methodderived from discourse theory, which is brieflyexplained in the second section. The thirdsection typifies the policy philosophy of eachof the approaches and attempts to characterizethe changes in the policy discourse in relationto the continually changing combinations ofsocietal events and situations that, from theperspective of the policy sector, were eithernot foreseen or difficult to influence.Looking at the way policy has developed over alonger period, it seems to be less of arational learning process than a`merry-go-round' of fixed themes, visions, andsolutions that jostle for priority and keepcoming back only to disappear again. Furthermore, the logical consistency of apolicy philosophy – for instance, betweennormative and causal assumptions and measures proves to be more the exception than therule.

A tale of two cities - Rental housing in Budapest and Sofia in the 1990s

September 2000


45 Reads

The paper describes the findings of a study conductedduring 1997–1998 on changes to the structure of rentalhousing provision in two post-communist cities,Budapest and Sofia. After nearly a decade of `transition'' to market economies, the public rentalsectors have shrunk dramatically and becomeresidualised. Despite the rapid privatisation andassociated growth of owner-occupation there is littlesign that the privately rented sector (PRS) isregaining any of its pre-communist stature as theprincipal form of housing provision. There is almostno company landlordism and 80 percent of thelandlords in both cities let out only one property.They are mainly `incidental'' landlords who haveinherited or previously owned the property. Few havebought it as an investment. There are few signs ofinstitutional support for the PRS in either city.Despite this common context, the reasons for thedevelopment of the PRS in the two cities aresignificantly different. In both cities the PRSaccounts for about 4 percent of households. But inSofia nearly half the landlords let out their ownhouse for income, depressing their housing consumptionagainst a back-cloth of poverty and desperate need forincome. `Landlords'' move in with relatives or to`second homes''. Thus a large number of landlords arealso tenants in another property. In Budapest, unlikeSofia, new entrants to this market have fallen sharplyin the last 18 months. High taxation, falling realhouse prices and over-supply of property, followingthe rapid privatisation of the state rental housingstock, are the underlying problems inhibiting thegrowth of this sector. There is no sign of a return tothe tenure that was the foundation of their urbandevelopment, although explanations for this differbetween the two societies. The `transition to themarket'', at least in housing, continues to be parlousand immature.

Home ownership and early retirement: European experience in the 1990s

January 2003


43 Reads

Throughout the 1990s the general pattern acrossthe EU member states was of expanding homeownership sectors and of falling labourparticipation rates amongst older workers,particularly men. Using macro-level data, thepaper sets out to explain national differencesin participation rates, taken as a proxymeasure of early retirement. Whereas itindicates the statistical importance of anumber of trends – specifically labour marketconditions and government social policies – thepaper particularly focuses on the possible roleof housing tenure. It presents evidenceconsistent with the proposition that, onceowned outright, home ownership may offer theability to live rent-free and to create apension and thus facilitate early retirement. In acting as a sort of individualised providentfund, it may both give some welfare states adistinctive character as well as contribute tothe early retirement of large numbers of peoplefrom the labour market. The paper explores anumber of methodological and policy issuesarising from the analysis.

Fig. 1 Spatial distribution of comparable urbanization speed from 1995 to 2005. Chongqing was not separated from Sichuan province until 1997, when it became a Centrally Administered City  
Fig. 2 Urban floor space of actually sold commercial residential housing and CPI deflator-adjusted commodity housing price in China: 1991–2005. Source National Bureau of Statistics of China  
Fig. 3 Spatial distribution of commodity house price in 1995 (Yuan/sq m)  
Fig. 4 Spatial distribution of commodity house price in 2000 (Yuan/sq m)  
Fig. 5 Spatial distribution of commodity house price in 2005 (Yuan/sq m)  
Chinese urbanization and urban housing growth since the mid-1990s
  • Article
  • Full-text available

June 2011


1,075 Reads

This paper presents a comprehensive analysis on the situation of urbanization and urban housing growth since the mid 1990s in China. It calculates a much improved measurement of urbanization level in each province, which takes the unique characteristics of China’s urban/rural composition into consideration. Relative to the CPI (Customer Price Index) deflator, the adjusted prices of urban commodity house in each province between 1995 and 2005 are computed in this article. The correlation analysis on urban commodity prices and the levels of urbanization in each province gives evidence to support the regional variation of urbanization and urban housing growth in China. The results suggest that the existing high urbanization levels but still boosting urban commodity housing prices in developed provinces make the serious challenge to local urban housing provision. In contrast, the moderately developed provinces benefit from the relatively even expansion of both urbanization and urban commodity housing prices. KeywordsUrban housing–Urbanization–Migration–China

Urbanization and land-use planning in Adapazari (Turkey) reconsidered after the 1999 earthquake

January 2005


38 Reads

On 17 August 1999, an earthquake with a magnitude of 7.4 struck the Eastern Marmara Region of Turkey, destroying hundreds of buildings and killing thousands of people. It is not enough to analyze the damage inflicted by the earthquake solely in terms of its physical features (magnitude, epicenter or depth). Regional policies (particularly industrialization and urbanization) and unsuitable land-use planning/engineering processes also played a role. This paper presents a critical evaluation of these factors with reference to Adapazar, one of the cities that suffered heavily from these non-natural processes.

Figure 1. The user costs per housing valuation point for owner-occupiers and tenants, per income decile, 1993. Source: Conijn and Elsinga, 1998, p. 38. (1) In Dutch rent policy a point system is used as a proxy for the quality of rented housing. The relation between rent and valuation points determines the annual rent adaptation. 
A new housing policy for the Netherlands (2000–2010): A mixed bag

September 2001


1,211 Reads

In December 2000 the final version of the Dutch Housing Memorandum Whatpeople want, where people live was published, covering the period2000–2010. An increasing prosperity is expected, in combinationwith an increasing individualization, emancipation and multiculturalprofile of society. More individual freedom of choice for the citizen isthe point of departure in the new Housing Memorandum. Although thispolicy message is clear and attractive, the Memorandum leaves the readerpuzzled. In this contribution, three dilemmas are highlighted: Does thecitizen really choose or is it the State which makes the choices, inparticular between buying or renting? Are housing associations able toserve a differentiated mix of tenants, or will the residents of socialhousing become marginalized? What will be the place of the municipalityand the State: on the sidelines of the new housing policy, or in thecentre? The Housing Memorandum seems to be a direct attack on thehousing associations. On the other hand, the Memorandum may just be apaper tiger, challenging the housing associations to show that they canreally meet the citizens' needs and demands for more quality andvariety.

Divided Cities in the 21st Century: Challenging the Importance of Globalisation

March 2007


349 Reads

In this paper the focus is on the explanation of divided cities. We will make clear that many elements of older theories are still very relevant when divisions within cities have to be explained. This is obviously still the case in a world which is described by a large number of geographers and urban sociologists as increasingly globalising. A main argument could be that in the last three decades or so the process of globalisation has become enormously influential in explaining changes within cities, but in this paper we want to modify this notion. Our argument will be that attention for globalisation is useful, but that we should never exaggerate the influence of this process in a city as a whole and in parts of that city. In other words: we want to challenge the importance of globalisation when explaining divided cities or urban change in general.

Neighbourhood attachment in deprived areas: Evidence from the north of England. Journal of Housing and the Built Environment, 25(4), 409-427

December 2010


255 Reads

Those living in deprived areas may have a greater reliance on the neighbourhood as a setting for social activity. However, the reduced quality of deprived neighbourhoods may make attachment in such places less likely. Other factors, like high turnover and social mix, may also act to reduce an individual’s attachment in these neighbourhoods. Using qualitative methods, this study examines both emotional and functional attachment to deprived neighbourhoods, specifically considering the impact of high turnover and of social mix. Social mix is broadly defined, including but not limited to ethnic and tenure mix. Many respondents reported strong emotional attachments to their communities, with the presence of strong social networks and a sense of security the most important contributing factors. Functional attachments and attachments to the physical environment were weak or absent. High turnover in deprived areas was found to reduce place attachment by undermining social networks, lowering social interaction, and eroding trust and feelings of security. There was little evidence that social mix in any dimension reduced attachment significantly. However, high residential turnover and a rapidly changing (ethnic) mix in one area had led to increased anxieties and reduced attachments. The research shows that rather than systemic factors being dominant, place attachment in deprived areas is very context dependent (e.g. in terms of where the neighbourhood is located in relation to others). For an individual, also experiential, historical and personal factors are strong determinants of attachment. KeywordsPlace attachment-Deprivation-Population turnover-Social mix-Social cohesion

Good and bad fortune of the plan for the construction of 5,000 (low- and middle-income) housing units in Brussels

September 2008


18 Reads

Especially due to the impoverishment of the population of the capital, combined with the increasing tendency to family separation, the need for low-income housing is in constant progress in Brussels. Unfortunately, the public supply remains inadequate to absorb this demand. The Brussels authorities have actually started an extensive plan for the construction of 5,000 low- and middle-income units, but this plan is faced with, if not a failure, at least serious problems in its realization. But why is it so arduous to build social housing in the Brussels Capital Region? This question constitutes the object of this article.

Valuation of traffic-noise abatement

June 2005


46 Reads

The purpose of this paper is to analyze the economic consequences of an investment in traffic-noise abatement. Two hypotheses are tested: first, a noise barrier has a positive capitalization effect on the values of single-family houses; second, there is a difference in capitalization rate between houses close to and remote from the road. Both hypotheses are verified. The benefits have been estimated by analyzing prices of houses that have been sold more than once; that is the repeated-sales method (RSM). The repeated-sales model has been tested for sample selection bias and the implicit assumption about parameter constancy over time. The total benefit to the stock of houses has been estimated and compared with the total cost. I conclude that in this case, public investment in a traffic-noise barrier can be clearly justified.

Residential mobility of Aboriginal single mothers in Winnipeg: An exploratory study of chronic moving

April 2002


35 Reads

The paper reviews literatureon residential mobility giving particularattention to the choice-constraint frameworkpredominantly utilized, and arguing for a moreinclusive approach in the study of marginalizedpopulations. Then it reports on mobilitypatterns in inner city Winnipeg, Canada inorder to illustrate the discussion, beginningwith a description of archival mobility datafrom the national Census and from the localschool board. Next, semi-structured andin-depth interviews with highly mobile singlemothers of Aboriginal origin are presented todescribe and analyse mobility experiences ofthis group. The interview material isinterpreted to suggest that moving behaviour isunderlain by rationalities related toAboriginal identity in the city, and to awillingness and capacity for action in face ofdire social circumstances, observations thatmight not emerge from choice-constraintanalysis. Finally, some consequences forfurther studies and for policy are identified.

FIGURE 1: Map of Accommodate National and Sample Partnership Structure  
Refugee integration and access to housing: A network management perspective

June 2009


364 Reads

Studies of refugee integration in the UK have tended to focus either on integration as a concept or on the experiences of individuals or communities (cf. Ager and Strang, Indicators of integration: Final report, Home Office, London, 2004; Phillimore and Goodson in Urban Stud 43(10): 1715–1776, 2006). This article adopts a different, meso level of analysis, exploring the role of institutional networks in mediating integration. It draws on an evaluation and Ph.D. study of a project involving refugee community organisations in partnerships with housing providers and local authorities. This project adopted an implicit network management approach, with a funder/lead partner steering a set of local partnerships towards common outcomes—including empowerment of refugee organisations, changing policies and practices of larger partners—whilst at the same time improving access to housing and support services for refugees. The article establishes that network management was a theory in use and outlines concepts drawn from the network management literature to reflect on a comprehensive 3-year evaluation of the project. It draws evidence from a set of reflective interviews and a workshop for project partners held in the final stages of the evaluation, and from partnership interviews held as part of the Ph.D. study. It explores the cognitive and social dimensions of these networks, the types of steering used, power differences between actors and how network games played out. In conclusion it reflects on wider implications for the evaluation of networks, in particular the need to distinguish between a priori and emergent goals and between joint and multiple outcomes.

Figure 1. Map of the Netherlands  
Figure 2. Job access within 30 minutes (number of jobs)  
Figure 3. Access to high-level jobs (location coefficients)
Job-related migration in the Netherlands. The role of geographical access to employment in a polynucleated urban region

June 2005


109 Reads

Over the last few decades, the Netherlands’ economic urban landscape has developed into a polynucleated urban structure. The resulting spatial distribution of job opportunities influences geographical job access at the individual level. This paper addresses the question, to what extent does spatial variation in job access within the Netherlands polynucleated urban structure influence job-related migration? First, it is shown that there are large differences in job access in the Netherlands in both the total number of jobs and in job levels. Scores on job access are higher in strategic residential locations in between the major cities in the polynucleated urban region of the Randstad than in the major cities themselves. Second, using data from the Netherlands Housing Demand survey and logistic regression models, it is shown that the probability of job-related migration decreases as the number of jobs within reach of the residence increases. The analyses control for both individual and household characteristics. The results show that strategic residential locations in between the major cities are as favourable as the cities themselves in terms of avoiding high spatial mobility costs.

Quasi-marketising access to social housing in Britain: Assessing the distributional impacts

June 2007


21 Reads

Since 2000 growing numbers of British social landlords have emulated their Dutch counterparts by introducing a ‘quasi-market’ approach to letting vacant properties. Known in Britain as choice-based lettings (CBL), the new approach aspires to treat people seeking social housing as consumers and to encourage consumerist behaviour. This is consistent with a wider drive for UK welfare state reforms emphasizing ‘customer choice’. As in other policy areas (e.g., education and health) the widening of service-user choice in this area has given rise to concerns that a more market-like system could be to the detriment of already disadvantaged groups. In the CBL case, particular concerns have been expressed about the possible consequences for formerly homeless households. It has also been suggested that, in shifting responsibility for decisions on matching properties and people from landlords to house-seekers themselves, CBL might exacerbate ethnic segregation. Drawing on a government-commissioned study focusing on early CBL schemes in England and Scotland, this paper examines these hypotheses in the light of empirical evidence. The analysis finds no indication that formerly homeless households tend to be disadvantaged under CBL in terms of area popularity or property quality. And, in general, the system appears to produce a more spatially dispersed—rather than a more concentrated—pattern of lettings to ethnic minority households.

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