Housing & Land Use in Rapidly Urbanizing Regions

In this class, we will define and assess the various institutional and governance structures for urban land management systems that have significant implications for housing policy in developing countries.  We will discuss how land and housing are closely intertwined in the design of any sustainable shelter policy for the urban poor.  Our exploration will begin with a careful review of the unique property relations of land and housing in developing countries and then extend the analysis to the massive informality found in their real estate sector.  The prime objective of the class is to devise open and inclusive governance structures for improving the living conditions and livelihoods of the poor and underprivileged groups who reside in informal settlements. 

Among all policy challenges, we will focus on four issues:

•   property relations of land and housing, concentrating on the reciprocal nature of formal and  informal rules,

•   land use regulations, property exchanges, and informality,

•   conventional approaches of dealing with informal settlements, and

•   financing informal settlement upgrading and regularization.