Partnerships for Affordable Rental Housing

Collaborative call for papers during ENHR 2018 workshops sessions

Partnerships for Affordable Rental Housing

Working Groups: Social Housing and Globalisation, Social Housing: Institutions, Organisations and Governance

A growing affordability problem in cities has prompted a renewed commitment of governments, complemented with municipal programs, to end homelessness and increase the supply of adequate affordable* rental housing. Given the devolution of government involvement in housing, consensus has been building across Europe and North America that an effective response requires a multi-sectoral approach, including all levels of government, the private for-profit and non-profit sectors, as well as local communities. This is perceived as the most effective way of producing affordable housing to meet growing local needs within limited resources and capacity. The last few years have seen large cities join their efforts with non-profit and private organisations to provide affordable rental housing in mixed-income, mixed-tenure projects. The practice is different depending on institutional arrangements, governance models and types of financial and regulatory support. The diversity in the implementation process is an important manifestation of policy innovation and resilience. The provision of affordable rental housing in different contexts has implications for traditional systems of social and public housing in favour of new options. One key outcome is the extent of low rent social housing replacement, reflecting a major conflict between profit driven and socially driven partners. We are interested in exploring how these tensions are resolved in models, processes and outcomes. Through this collaborative call for papers, we would like to capture change and reflect on its implications, as well as explore growth in the provision of affordable housing through multi-sectoral partnerships.

London: Aberfeldy village partnerships housing project

The theme of affordable housing partnerships is related to the interests of multiple ENHR Working Groups (see above). These Working Groups are joining their efforts during the ENHR 2018 conference by publishing a collaborative call for papers related to Partnerships for Affordable Rental Housing. During the ENHR 2018 conference the Working Groups will organise a joined kick-off workshop to describe the ‘state of the art’, and a concluding session to capture synergies, discuss emerging initiatives and explore future collaboration on Partnerships for Affordable Rental Housing. Based on their specific topics, submitted papers will be allocated to the kick-off session or workshop sessions of the respective Working Groups.

Related to the theme of Partnerships for Affordable Rental Housing, we are looking for conference papers and contributions organised around four themes: 1) evidence-based practices, 2) policy design for effective implementation, 3) mobilisation of resources at the local level; and 4) planning & design for socially inclusive communities. We will collaborate on joint publications (e.g. special journal issue and/or an edited book) on the topic that will allow a systematic comparison of these issues across countries and cities.

The Working Groups also welcome other papers that are connected to their core topics: see the information on the Working Group’s activities on the ENHR 2018 conference website.


Sasha Tsenkova
Faculty of Environmental Design, University of Calgary, Canada

Gerard van Bortel
Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment, Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands


*We use the term ‘affordable’ housing in a broad sense to indicate rental housing for low and moderate income households. This includes ‘social’ and ‘public’ housing. We acknowledge that the term ‘affordable’ housing can have different meanings in different contexts, and that new 'affordable' housing options are introduced in some countries narrowing traditional systems of social and public housing.