Financialised housing in 21st century Portugal: Social representations, practices, and political stakes

January 1, 2022 to June 30, 2023
18 months

The right to adequate housing is inseparable from the right to life and constitutes the foundation of other human rights as education or health. With more than half of the world’s population living in urban areas, inequalities in the access to housing are at the core of the challenges contemporary societies face in achieving social inclusion, cohesion, full citizenship and healthy lives. At the beginning of 2020, in the main Portuguese cities, Lisbon and Porto, housing as financial investment was prevailing. In other words, in these cities, like in other cities (e.g. Barcelona, London, or Berlin), housing is used as a means for obtaining high profitability through renting or selling. The consequences impacted negatively the access to housing and housing security, contributing to increased inequalities in housing conditions, socio-territorial segregation, and impoverishment of less advantaged populations. Financial motivations produced important negative psychosocial impacts, associated with social exclusion, unethical and discriminatory housing practices and also accentuated the exposition of households and the housing market to economic crises, like the one that has been unfolding with the current COVID19 pandemic. The project HOU$ING studies the relation between the rise of financial markets, actors and motives – in other words, financialisation – in housing provision and the social representations and practices associated with housing. That is, intends to study social representations conceived as a set of concepts, statements and explanations built in the daily inter-individual communications that while guiding action, orient attitudes and behaviors and political public opinion. In doing so, HOU$ING aims to contribute to achieving progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals, namely: reduce inequality within and among countries (SDG 10), make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable (SDG 11), promote peaceful and inclusive societies (SDG 16), and to the Portuguese research & innovation thematic agendas for Social Inclusion and Citizenship and Urban Science and Cities for the Future.

housing, financialisation, social representations, practices
Funding Entity
Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology