Spring 2014 - 63447 - PA388K - Advanced Topics in Public Policy
Housing Policies and Practices in Latin America
A graduate seminar, it is a modeled upon a one-semester policy research project that grows out of the ongoing nine country Latin American Housing Network study “A New Generation of Housing Policies in Consolidated Self-Help Settlements in Latin America” (www.lahn.utexas.org). Along with many other publications on the LANH website this study will appear as a major book in June of 2014 in preparation of UNHABITAT III in 2016. To date the focus has been upon housing policies that target housing and community rehab of in low income informal settlements that were established 25-35 years ago at the periphery of Latin American metropolitan areas, and now form part of the intermediate ring of these cities. Fully “consolidated”, they began informally through the capture of unserviced land and developed incrementally by self-build. Today, however, these neighborhoods are often heavily deteriorated, intensively used, densely populated with multi-household occupancy and lot sharing. They also have a substantial asset value. Increasingly, too, these dwellings are passing to the adult children as the original pioneer parents pass away. Population stability is the norm.
However, one of the reasons that these settlements now have quite dense populations is because they house significant numbers of renters and other non-owner low income populations, most of whom, in contrast to owners, are much younger and show high levels of residential mobility or “churn”. Until recently relatively little attention has been directed at non-owners, or at policies targeting the established low income housing stock. Close to inner city core with significant locational advantages, these areas are the focus of policy attention that seeks to achieve more efficient land use through programs of densification, and community regeneration and redevelopment. This policy seminar will explore the nature and rise of renting and non-ownership; the changing policy away from mass housing projects towards re-densification in the existing housing stock; and the dangers and lessons of gentrification and displacement, in order to explore the possibilities for equitable housing and community rehabilitation without displacement. Lessons from Santiago Chile, and elsewhere, will guide our assessment about whether gentrification without displacement is feasible.
As in previous years we will examine what may be learned from low-income housing practices and policies in Latin America and how these can also inform policy in Texas colonias and first suburb (“innerburbs”) reconstruction in Texas – and vice versa. We will discuss the rise of renting in colonias and urban rehabilitation in the “innerburbs” of Austin. An (early) capstone one day research workshop will be held in Austin on March 18 or 19 in advance of the Urban Affairs Association conference in San Antonio (19-22 March). Several members of the LAHN network will be present, along with representatives of the IBD who have a major interest in this “back to the city” redevelopment research. The aim is to formulate new policy approaches as an input to HABITAT III.
This cross-listed course with the Sociology (SOC 395D #46623), and Latin American Studies (LAS 381 #41144). LBJ is home department.