Hidden from history? housing studies, the perpetual present and the case of social housing in Britain

COLE, I. D. (2006). Hidden from history? housing studies, the perpetual present and the case of social housing in Britain. Housing studies, 21 (2), 283-295.

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Link to published version:: https://doi.org/10.1080/02673030500484893


This paper examines the use and abuse of historical method in the field of housing studies, with specific reference to predictions about the future shape of social housing in Britain. It reflects on the debates about council housing in the early 1990s and sets these against subsequent policy developments. The paper suggests that this exercise reveals some shortcomings in dominant paradigms within housing studies, such as the misreading and misrepresentation of tenants' responses and reactions; the over-emphasis on consumption in assessing processes of housing sector change; the neglect of increasing spatial differentiation in housing markets across Britain; and the failure to appreciate the causes behind increasing volatility in some local housing markets. The paper argues for a more nuanced historical sensibility and a more adventurous methodology when forecasting the future direction of housing policies and the future characteristics of housing systems.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: history, housing studies, social housing
Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Centre for Regional Economic and Social Research
Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1080/02673030500484893
Page Range: 283-295
Depositing User: Ann Betterton
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2009
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2021 21:45
URI: https://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/777

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