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How Can Competition in Social Rental Housing in England and the Netherlands be Measured?


  • Marja Elsinga
  • Marietta Haffner
  • Harry Van Der Heijden
  • Michael Oxley


In an attempt to promote efficiency and consumer choice, many governments in Europe have in recent years required social housing organisations to be more market-orientated and competitive. Competition, however, is being discussed and implemented without any detailed examination of what is meant by the term 'competition' outside a conventional 'market', as is the case in social housing. It is not clear what exactly is meant by competition and this paper therefore focuses on the question of how competition can be operationalised and how it can be measured in practice. This paper concentrates on social housing in England and the Netherlands: two countries where competition in social housing is an issue. These two countries also have different social housing models. For both countries, we build on an evaluative framework based on the economic concepts of rivalry, risk and choice and then analyse the data to establish whether competition can be measured in a convincing way.

Suggested Citation

  • Marja Elsinga & Marietta Haffner & Harry Van Der Heijden & Michael Oxley, 2009. "How Can Competition in Social Rental Housing in England and the Netherlands be Measured?," International Journal of Housing Policy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 9(2), pages 153-176.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:intjhp:v:9:y:2009:i:2:p:153-176
    DOI: 10.1080/14616710902920264

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    Competition; social housing; choice; efficiency;


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