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Robert Crosnoe, Chair CLA 3.306, Mailcode A1700, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-232-6300

Fall 2007

SOC 395D • Housing Practice & Public Policy in Latin America: From Santiago to San Antonio

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
47880 W
9:00 AM-12:00 PM
SRH 3.102

Course Description

This graduate course aims to introduce students to different interpretations and methodologies used to evaluate the production processes and the nature of low-income housing in Latin America, and to assess the rationale and effectiveness of public policy. It does so in such a way as to include the equivalent self-managed (colonias) housing areas of Texas, and in part asks the question: What can we learn from the Latin American experience about housing policy here in Texas, and in the US more broadly? This is tied to Professor Ward's current research which will be interpolated within the classes. The course will adopt a "political economy" paradigm of the housing process that examines the way in which housing production assists capital accumulation and serves to integrate low-income groups socially and politically as urbanites and as citizens. The changing nature of housing processes and the adequacy of public policy initiatives to respond to effective housing demand, will allow us to begin to interpret both the rationale underpinning state intervention and to evaluate the relative effectiveness of public policy.

The course begins with a broad overview of housing production as a development issue, and a student-led workshop will identify urbanization and housing data trends for several Latin American countries (as well as for Texas). The study is tied to a multi-city study of housing policy for urban regeneration of inner suburban areas that is currently being directed by Professor Ward and it is hoped that there will be a "capstone" conference on this issue sometime in the last two weeks of the course. Students will be expected to undertake some basic reading for each class in order that they participate fully in the student led-seminar presentations. I will also circulate class (lecture) notes and, as necessary will talk over them briefly front or back end of class usually relating our discussion to current research in Texas and elsewhere. Each student will be expected to lead discussion and present two "Practice and Policy" generic papers on Latin America relating to one of a selection of substantive issues (access to land; self-help housing; gender and housing; renting and non-ownership; infrastructure; community participation and management; housing finance, and so on). Finally, "round-up" seminars will address the future policy imperatives for both Latin America at the national and sub-national levels, as well as for Texas, looking back at the 2007 Legislative Session and to the future legislative imperatives. There will be one fieldtrip to colonia-type subdivisions in central Texas, and possible another to the border Del Rio/Ciudad Acuna. A reading knowledge of Spanish or Portuguese is desirable but not essential for participation in this course.


" *Alan Gilbert. 1994. The Latin American City. (London, Latin American Books, & New York, Monthly Review Press)* " Alan Gilbert, ed. 1996. The Latin American Megacity. Tokyo and New York.. The United Nations University Press. " Alan Gilbert and others. 1993. In Search of a Home: Rental Housing in Latin America. (University of Arizona Press). " Alan Gilbert Rental volume " Gareth Jones and Peter M. Ward (eds.) 1994. Methodology for Land and Housing Market Analysis, (University College London Press & Lincoln Institute of Land Policy.) " United Nations Centre for Human Settlements (HABITAT), 1996. An Urbanizing World: Global Report on Human Settlements. Oxford University Press, New York. " *Peter Ward. 1999. Colonias and Public Policy in Texas and Mexico: Urbanization by Stealth. (University of Texas Press)


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