582.2 30 years later - From access to housing to consolidation of housing settlements: Revisiting the case of Recife, Brazil

Friday, August 3, 2012: 2:42 PM
Faculty of Economics, TBA
Oral Presentation
Caroline Gonçalves dos SANTOS , Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, Maceió, Brazil
Housing deficit has been addressed by the markets and by government policies worldwide. Since public policies are the means that has been used to address this issue, they have become crucial to partially ensure access to housing to the low income population. Most governments went through a phase of denial of the problem, followed by the adoption of actions for the removal of poorly constructed homes. Thereafter, policies were adopted towards direct provision of new housing units, later perceived as ineffective in targeting the poorest. There was a shift in this paradigm from top-down to bottom-up approaches. It is noteworthy that this housing issue suffers interference to a greater or lesser extent, of different ideologies and interests ranging from the capital expansion in three levels: internationally, nationally and locally. The Brazilian case, for example, is influencing as well as been influenced by Latin American experiences. From what can be observed today, it is possible to claim that most governments have become more tolerant to people’s initiatives to housing themselves, looking for alternatives towards the regularization of land tenure and the improvement of housing conditions to ensure the necessary framework for the permanence of residents in already occupied settlements. This paper expands this debate by providing evidence from a case study in Recife, Brazil in dealing with these issues over the last thirty years.