The housing question in times of crisis

Searching for socially sustainable solutions.

Sweden is confronting one of its worst housing crises in modern times, but the study of housing crises, and their formative role in housing system development, remains notably lacking in housing studies literature. The proposed project aims to make good this gap by investigating the role of housing crises in shaping housing system development, through the intersectional lenses of, gender, class and race.

Focusing on three periods of crisis (the interwar period, the banking crisis of the early 1990s, and the current housing crisis), we seek to interrogate the role of both state and non-state actors in interpreting, legitimating, and shaping housing crises and crisis outcomes. The proposed study adopts a triangulation method which integrates longitudinal analysis, discourse analysis, and interest group research to analyse the aforementioned crisis periods. Profound changes have emanated from periods of housing crisis in Sweden, but crisis resolution is never neutral or independent of power relations.

Understanding the distribution of interests shaping crises and their resolutions is, thus, important as the socio-institutional responses to crises are key components determining the structure and organisation of housing systems thereafter. Through interrogating the mechanisms of historical crises and how these have been negotiated, we aim to understand the limits and possibilities for socially sustainable solutions to the current housing crisis.

Project start





Ståle Holgersen (project manager)
Timothy Blackwell

Last modified: 2022-12-05