Paradigm Shifts in Social Housing After Welfare‐State Transformation : Learning from the German Experience

Welfare‐state transformation and entrepreneurial urban politics in Western welfare states since the late 1970s have yielded converging trends in the transformation of the dominant Fordist paradigm of social housing in terms of its societal function and institutional and spatial form. In this article I draw from a comparative case study on two cities in Germany to show that the resulting new paradigm is simultaneously shaped by the idiosyncrasies of the country's national housing regime and local housing policies. While German governments have successively limited the societal function of social housing as a legitimate instrument only for addressing exceptional housing crises, local policies on providing and organizing social housing within this framework display significant variation. However, planning and design principles dominating the spatial forms of social housing have been congruent. They may be interpreted as both an expression of the marginalization of social housing within the restructured welfare housing regime and a tool of its implementation according to the logics of entrepreneurial urban politics.

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License Holder: Schönig, Barbara

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