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Reframing Affordable Housing as Our Housing Commons

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Type: Working Paper
Author: Steele, Margaret
Date: 2012
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10535/8527
Sector: Social Organization
Region: North America
Subject(s): housing
Abstract: "In the market-based economies of the developed world, people are expected to obtain housing through one of two mechanisms –- through the marketplace, if they can afford it, or through accessing programs and supports provided by the state, if they cannot. In some nations, a non-profit sector also provides housing; however, this sector often depends upon the state for the majority of its funding. With over 100 million people experiencing homelessness and at least another one billion inadequately housed, there is ample evidence that market-based economies have not produced adequate, affordable shelter for everyone. A more robust alternative may lie in the work being done to create a 'Commons Paradigm' -- an economic and social framework that recognizes the pivotal role the commons play in human survival. This article suggests affordable housing should be recognized as a commons and should be protected by community housing charters and managed by community housing trusts."

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