Peter Ward

Faculty Research AssociatePh.D., University of Liverpool

Professor and Associate Dean for Research, LBJ School; C.B. Smith Sr. Centennial Chair in US-Mexico Relations
Peter Ward


  • Phone: 512.471-6302
  • Office: CLA 3.730, SRH 3.228
  • Office Hours: Wednesday 1:30-3:15 LBJ SChool; 3:30-5:00pm Sociology
  • Campus Mail Code: A1700


Peter M. Ward received his Ph.D. from the University of Liverpool in 1976 and subsequently has held senior teaching and research positions at University College London (1976-85), The University of Cambridge (1985-91), and at The University of Texas at Austin (1991-present) where he holds the C.B. Smith Sr. Centennial Chair in US-Mexico Relations, and is professor in the Department of Sociology (College of Liberal Arts), and in the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs.  Between 1993-7 and 2001-05, he was Director of the Mexican Center at the Lozano Long Institute of Latin American Studies.  Between 2002-7 he was Editor-in-Chief of the Latin American Research Review. In 2006 he led the initiative to create the Latin American Housing Network which he coordinates at the University of Texas at Austin

In addition to over 120 scholarly articles and book chapters on public policy in Mexico and Latin America, he has written fifteen books including: Housing, the State and the Poor: Policy and Practice in Latin American Cities (with Alan Gilbert), Welfare Politics in Mexico: Papering Over the Cracks, and Mexico City: The Production and Reproduction of an Urban Environment (all translated into Spanish); Self-Help Housing: A Critique, Corruption, Development and Inequality (editor), Methodology for Land and Housing Market Analysis (coeditor), Political Change in Baja California: Democracy in the Making? (with Victoria Rodriguez), and Opposition Governments in Mexico: Past Experiences and Future Opportunities(with Victoria Rodriguez). Mexico City (second edition), New Federalism and State Government in Mexico: Bringing the States Back In (with Victoria Rodriguez), Colonias and Public Policy in Texas: Urbanization by Stealth.  His most recent books are Governance in the Americas: Decentralization Democracy and Subnational Government in the USA, Mexico, and Brazil (2008), Metropolitan Governance in the Federalist Americas (2012), and (2014) Housing Policies in Latin American Cities: A New Generation of Strategies and Approaches for 2016 UN-HABITAT III.

His principal research interests are Latin American urbanization, contemporary Mexican politics, housing policy and planning, Mexico City, and colonia-type housing in the United States. At various times he has served as adviser to the Mexican government and to a number of international development agencies.




Recent Publications 2011 -- present.  (See c.v. for full list since 1976.) 


“Repensando el espacio geopolítico metropolitano en México: ¿Como lograr un verdadero gobierno y gobernabilidad para todos?” pp. 211-44 La Geografía Contemporánea y Elisée Reclus.  Guénola Capron, Carmen Icazuriaga Montes, Silvana Levi, Eulalia Ribera Carbó and Virginie Thiébaut, Eds.  Publicacions de la Casa Chata: DF.

(99) “Con el título en la mano: The Meaning of Full Property Titles, and the Impact of Titling Programs upon Low Income Housing Improvements in Texas Colonias.”   (Lead author in collaboration with Jane Larson, Flavio de Souza and Cecilia Giusti).*   Law and Social Inquiry. 36, 1, 1-82. *

(100) Self-help Housing Policies for Second Generation Inheritance and Succession of the House that Mum and Dad Built.   Peter Ward [lead author] and Edith Jiménez, in collaboration with Erika Grajeda and Claudia Ubaldo Velázquez.  Habitat International  Vol. 35, 467-485.*

(101) Governança metropolitan nas Américas. Cadernos Metrópole, Vol 13, 25, 15-44  (with Robert Wilson [lead author] and Peter Spink).


(102) “A Patrimony for the Children”: Low Income Homeownership and Housing (im)Mobility in Latin American Cities.  Annals of the Association of American Geographers (AAAG). Volume 102, Issue 6, 1489-1510.

 (103) Housing and Urban Regeneration in the First Suburbs and “Innerburbs” of the Americas. In International Encyclopedia of Housing and the Home. Susan Smith, Editor in Chief. Elsevier, pp 559-572

(104) Housing Policies in Developing Countries. In International Encyclopedia of Housing and the Home. Susan Smith, Editor in Chief. Elsevier. pp 219-227.

(105) Section Editors’ Introduction: Housing and Wellbeing. . In International Encyclopedia of Housing and the Home. Susan Smith, Editor in Chief. Elsevier.  (With Chris Hamnett.) pp xxx-xxxiii

(106) Sustainable Housing Design and Technology Applications and Policies for Low-income Self-help Settlements, Habitat International  (With Esther Sullivan). Sustainable housing applications and policies for low-income self-build and housing rehab”, Habitat International,  Volume 36, Issue 2, April 2012, Pages 312–323

(107) “Self-Help Housing: Ideas and Practice in the Americas”, Bish Sanyal, Lawrence Vale and Christina Rosan, eds.  Planning Ideas That Matter: Livability, Territoriality, Governance and Reflective Practice . MIT Press.  pp.283-310

(108) “Metropolitan government and governance in Mexico: A contradiction in terms?”  (With Hector Robles*). Pp.141-170 In Metropolitan Governance in the Americas, edited by Peter Spink, Peter Ward and Robert Wilson, University of Notre Dame Press.

(109) Inheritance and Succession among Second and Third Generation Squatter Households in Mexico City (With Erika Grajeda)  Latin American Research Review. Special Issue, pp139-162.

(110) Introductory Overview. Contextualizing Disability: Issues of Immigration, Economics and Family. In Angel. J.,  Markides K., and Torres-Gil, F. eds.Latino Health and Aging. Springer  Publishing Co., New York.

(111) “Hacia una nueva generación de política habitacional en colonias populares consolidadas en México. Regeneración urbana y rehabilitación del hábitat. pp147-258. In Jiménez Huerta, Edith, and Heriberto Cruz Solís, Editors. 2012. Superado la informalidad, nuevos desafíos: políticas para las colonias populares consolidadas. Editorial Universitaria: Universidad de Guadalajara. Mexico

 Metropolitan Governance in the Federalist Americas: Case Studies and Strategies for Equitable and Integrated Development.   (With Peter Spink and Robert Wilson).  2012. The University of Notre Dame Press.


 (112) “Intergovernmental Collaboration in Metropolitan Areas: The Case of the Federalist Americas.” (with Peter K. Spink and Robert Wilson [lead author]), in Next City: Planning for a New Energy and Climate Future, (Proceedings from the 10th International Urban Planning and Environment Association Symposium), Nicole Gurran, Peter Phipps, and Susan Thompson, eds. (University of Sydney, 2013)  pp. 218-243.


(113) The Reproduction of Informality in Low Income Self-Help Housing Communities in the USA In Anastasia Loukaitou-Sideris and Vinit Mukhija, editors The Informal City in the USA , MIT Press.

 (114) Measuring Self-Help Home Improvements in Texas Colonias: A Ten Year Natural Experiment”.  With Noah Durst.  Urban Studies.*

 (115) Intensive Case Study Methodology for the Analysis Of Self-Help Housing Consolidation, Household Organization and Mobility. Current Urban Studies, Vol 2.  (Lead Author with E. Jiménez and M. Di Virgilio).

 Housing Policy in Latin American Cities: A New Generation of Strategies and Approaches for UN-Habitat III in 2016., Routledge: Research in Urban Politics and PolicySeries  (Lead Author with E. Jiménez and M. Di Virgilio, & author or coauthor of six chapters).

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