Citizen Power and Housing: How Can the Disconnect Between Communities and Housing Providers Be Addressed?

Location
University of Birmingham
Category
Lectures Talks and Workshops, Social Sciences
Dates
Thursday 14th December 2017 (16:15-17:45)
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Contact

Places may be booked by emailing Helen Harris H.M.A.Harris@bham.ac.uk

Speaker: Jon Stevens, HCRG Honorary Research Fellow

This seminar reflects on a recent report edited by Jon Stevens, Honorary Research Fellow from the Housing and Communities Research, called ‘Residents Renewing Their City: The Story of Community Forum’.  The most recent HCRG Newsletter contained an article about the report. Among other things, the article highlighted the stark contrast between how inner city communities were engaged in housing renewal in Birmingham in the 1970’s and 1980’s and how in today’s post Grenfell Tower world similar communities find themselves marginalised and excluded

This seminar reflects on a recent report edited by Jon Stevens, Honorary Research Fellow from the Housing and Communities Research, called ‘Residents Renewing Their City: The Story of Community Forum’.  The most recent HCRG Newsletter contained an article about the report. Among other things, the article highlighted the stark contrast between how inner city communities were engaged in housing renewal in Birmingham in the 1970’s and 1980’s and how in today’s post Grenfell Tower world similar communities find themselves marginalised and excluded. 

In the seminar Jon, with assistance from colleagues who were active with him at the time, will consider:

  • The ‘post-war housing settlement’: the role of the state in directing and supporting housing production and in regulating housing markets
  • About citizen-led housing: public participation and the successes (and failures) of the community action movement
  • How Birmingham developed a sustained programme of public intervention in inner-city housing markets: the Urban Renewal Programme
  • How localised, multi-disciplinary, directly accountable forms of service delivery empowered inner-city communities and reshaped housing markets
  • New agencies of change: from city-wide community networks to local resource centres to community-based housing associations
  • Urban Renewal in retreat: the progressive withdrawal from market intervention in the face of government expenditure cutbacks and the marketisation of housing strategy
  • Reflections and discussion on where we are today and what can usefully be learned from interventionist models of housing provision and community engagement

Jon Stevens

Jon is an Honorary Research Fellow with the Housing and Communities Research Group at the University of Birmingham. Between 2009 and 2016, Jon researched co-operative and mutual models of housing and care for older people. He authored several reports on the subject; including ‘Growing Older Together: An Overview of Collaborative Forms of Housing for Older People’ for Housing LIN published in March 2016.

In May 2017, ‘Residents Renewing Their City: The Story of Community Forum’ was published by Localise West Midlands and CURS. This account of community engagement in housing renewal in Birmingham in the 1970s and 1980s was edited and part-written by Jon. It was favourably reviewed by Professor Alan Murie; “This important book fills a gap. Recent accounts of housing policy are too focused on the role of central government and on pieces of legislation and there are too few accounts that highlight the importance of local action”.   

Programme

4.15     Introduction David Mullins

4.20     Jon Stevens Citizen Power

4.50     Panel Barry Toon, Frances Heywood and John Goodman

5.10     Discussion

5.45     Close

6.00     HCRG Christmas Drinks in Staff House Bar

The panel details are Barry Toon, formerly Treasurer of Community Forum and now Chair of the Community Partnership for Selly Oak (CP4SO), Frances Heywood, formerly worker for Community Forum and now Trustee of Care and Repair England and John Goodman, formerly of Coventry Co-op Development Agency and now Chair of UK Cohousing Network.