PhD research focus in Urban Housing, Equity and Social Justice


The Research Objective of the Urban Housing, Equity and Social Justice area is to understand processes of neighbourhood development (new housing development, urban regeneration, slum upgrading), including policy design, implementation and the impact on local initiatives and livelihoods

Overall research field

  • What type of initiatives do the urban poor (low income families, slum dwellers) take, individually or collectively, to improve the liveability of their settlement?
  • How are the urban poor involved, in theory and in practice, in the design and implementation of neighbourhood development policies, programmes and projects?
  • What is the impact of neighbourhood development programmes and projects on the local initiatives and livelihoods of the urban poor?

Possible topics


Social housing:

  • Social housing in low and middle-income countries (incl. public housing, government-built housing, subsidized housing programmes, low-income housing, affordable housing)
  • Dutch and European context of social housing
  • Formal (and informal) rental housing sector
  • Management of medium and high rise (social) housing developments

Case studies in Rotterdam, Western Balkans (e.g. Albania), South Africa, Guatemala.
Informal settlement dynamics:

  • Integrated urban upgrading

  • Land tenure regularization
  • Resettlement
  • Forced evictions, clearance and relocation

Livelihood, poverty alleviation and social policies:

  • Urban livelihood strategies of the poor
  • Livelihood asset management
  • Policy, institutions and processes affecting livelihoods of the urban poor
  • Social vulnerability context of the urban poor

Neighbourhood regeneration and design:

  • Mixed-used neighbourhood development
  • Gentrification
  • Green and sustainable building technologies

Cross-cutting themes:

  • Participation
  • A rights-based approach to housing
  • Urban accessibility (social, economic, political, physical)
  • Social exclusion and inclusion
  • Spatial segregation and integration

Compare @count study programme

  • @title

    • Duration: @duration
Compare study programmes