MSc Specialisation: Urban Housing, Equity and Social Justice


Focus of UHES

The Urban Housing, Equity and Social Justice (UHES) specialisation of the MSc in Urban Management and Development (UMD) focuses on evaluating the complex process of housing in relation to equity and social justice.


From the housing perspective, the specialisation will define equity as the role that policies and institutional frameworks have when recognising people’s needs for housing and ensuring these needs are met in accordance with their particular circumstances. Social justice is concerned with ensuring that housing is universally considered a basic need and a human right. It strives to help realise housing rights and evaluate the redistribution of benefits including access to adequate housing within society.

The course objective is to apply the principles that define adequate housing, namely housing accessibility, affordability, availability and acceptability. These principles are universal and not mutually exclusive and understanding and applying these principles are the starting point when evaluating housing policies and approaches.

Throughout the specialisation case study analyses of policies and approaches to housing are used with the aim to dispute and query the status quo in which these polices and approaches take place; to critically reflect on what is the outcome in practice of such policies and approaches and to start devising the best possible mechanisms that foster accessible, affordable, available and acceptable housing for all.

Urban Housing, Equity and Social Justice




IHS, Erasmus University Rotterdam

Alonso Ayala

UHL Expert - Housing

IHS, Erasmus University Rotterdam

Maartje van Eerd

UHL Expert - Housing & Social Development

IHS, Erasmus University Rotterdam

Ellen Geurts

UHL Expert - Housing

UN-Habitat (United Nations Human Settlements Programme)Claudio AciolyHead Capacity Building
Centre for Affordable Housing Finance in Africa (CAHF)Kecia RustExecutive Director


Banashree BanerjeeIndependent Architecture and Planning Professional Consultant
TU DelftDarinka Czischke 

Additionally to the lectures given by our own lecturers, guest lecturers are invited in to share their knowledge with the Urban Housing, Equity and Social Justice students. These guest lecturers may vary per academic year but over the past years, Claudio Acioly of UN Habitat has lectured yearly. Other guest lecturers include Kecia Rust (CAHF), Banashree Banerjee, Darinka Czischke, Mukta Naik, Marie-Odile Zanders and Rachel Keaton. To expose our UMD participants to field work in the Netherlands, we cooperate with Rotterdam based Social Housing Institutions, including Woonstad Rotterdam and Havensteder, as well as AEDES.

The UHL team are members of:

  • The European Network for Housing Research (ENHR)
  • The Platform 31 network
  • Participators in the Dutch Alliance for Sustainable Urban Development in Africa (DASUDA)