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Social housing in Europe


  • Scanlon, Kathleen
  • Fernández Arrigoitia, Melissa
  • Whitehead, Christine M E


Social housing has been an important part in Europe’s housing provision for many decades both in terms of investment in new build and regeneration but also in providing adequate affordable housing for a wide range of European citizens. This role has been seen to be under threat especially since the 1980s as public expenditure pressures have grown, liberalisation and privatisation have become more important and alternative tenures have become more readily available.1 This paper draws out some of the most important trends in the scale of social housing in countries across Europe; clarifies who lives in the sector and under what terms and conditions, and then discusses some of the drivers behind these trends and implications for the future provision of social housing.2 In particular it addresses the extent to which social housing contributes to ensuring that households can access adequate standard accommodation at a price they can afford in different contexts within the European Union. It also looks to the challenges faced by the sector and its role in the future.

Suggested Citation

  • Scanlon, Kathleen & Fernández Arrigoitia, Melissa & Whitehead, Christine M E, 2015. "Social housing in Europe," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 62938, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  • Handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:62938

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    JEL classification:

    • R14 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Land Use Patterns
    • J01 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General - - - Labor Economics: General

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