Power, discursive space and institutional practices in the construction of housing problems

Jacobs, Keith, Kemeny, Jim and Manzi, Tony (2003) Power, discursive space and institutional practices in the construction of housing problems. Housing Studies, 18 (4). pp. 429-446. ISSN 0267-3037


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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/02673030304252


A constructionist approach to the study of social problems and housing policy provides a theoretically informed means of analysing the ways in which housing policy is formulated and implemented. Yet despite a strong commitment by housing researchers to policy-relevance, constructionist studies of how specific social problems are generated and deployed have so far made only a limited impact on housing research. The paper addresses this lacuna by first discussing important literature and the key conceptual issues in this field of study. This is followed by a discussion of two examples from recent UK housing policy (the shift in the 1980s from defining lone mothers as the victims of housing shortages to a morally questionable group subverting needs based allocation policies and the re-emergence of anti-social behaviour as a problem on housing estates). The paper's conclusion is that the 'construction of problems' provides a rich source of new material as well as offering significant opportunities to develop a more critically informed housing research agenda.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Online ISSN 1466-1810
Uncontrolled Keywords: social problems, housing, power, discourse, institutional practice
Subjects: University of Westminster > Architecture and the Built Environment > Architecture and the Built Environment, School of (No longer in use)
Depositing User: Users 4 not found.
Date Deposited: 12 Aug 2005
Last Modified: 11 Aug 2010 14:29
URI: http://westminsterresearch.wmin.ac.uk/id/eprint/106

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