Community-led housing development

A key ingredient for a new housing architecture and policy











Within the global picture of financialisation of land and territory required by neoliberal national policies, housing becomes a financial tool, neglecting its nature as a common good, as reported by Raquel Rolnik, UN special rapporteur on adequate housing.

In light of this, this research reflects on the paths that commoning efforts in the housing sector can take in the complex contemporary situation, in which neither the state nor the market is fully capable of offering satisfactory solutions for a just and sustainable provision of basic urban resources as delineated by UN’s 2030 Agenda. This attempt will be articulated around the analysis of European examples, such as the Mietshäuser Syndikat, CLT, Trias and Edith Marion Foundations, showing the re-emergence of forms of community-led and collaborative housing, in order to sketch an image of the innovative models and strategies of housing tenure and provision from a common perspective.

The analysis focuses on spatial and architectural innovations that those models put into practice; on legal and economic instruments created and able to empower the communities to decommodify building stock and increase housing rights. It is important to study community-led practices, their level of autonomy and self-organisation, able to trigger new concrete solutions for housing issues and a democratic governance for a series of players involved in the complex development of housing projects, as responsible makers and users of the resource that their homes constitute.