Journal of Housing and the Built Environment

, Volume 31, Issue 4, pp 589–604 | Cite as

Housing context and legitimacy in the transformation of a stigmatized estate: the case of Rosengård

  • Peter ParkerEmail author
  • Ana Mafalda Madureira


Large housing estates built in the post second world war era have been the object of extensive debates and research in Europe and in North America, due to their social and maintenance challenges but also their high symbolic value. A wide range of regeneration strategies has been employed in addressing issues of segregation and stigmatization of these estates. This paper examines the role of local housing and public management in the selection of regeneration strategies. The paper starts from the concept of housing context as means of explaining the selection of regeneration strategy. The paper is informed by a case study of regeneration efforts in Rosengård, where a minor regeneration effort, the Bokals, led by the municipal housing company, crystalizes a new integrated approach in regenerating the estate. This sets the stage for subsequent developments. We argue that legitimacy, in the sense of management being perceived as a credible agent of change, is critical in the cumulative strengthening and shaping of the regeneration strategy in Rosengård. We put forward the notion of legitimacy trading to capture the mutual and instrumental public support of the main actors. The main contribution of the paper is to demonstrate how including aspects of management legitimacy can develop the concept of housing context, by extending the range of applicability and broadening the range of regeneration strategies that can be accounted for.


Housing context Large estates Legitimacy Municipal housing Regeneration strategies Rosengård Social transformation Stigma 



The authors wish to acknowledge the constructive comments of three anonymous reviewers. We are also grateful for comments on earlier drafts by Stig Westerdahl, Carina Listerborn, Eva Öresjö and Daniel Ericsson, and the help of Magnus Johansson in collecting and discussing materials. The research has been funded by the Swedish Research Council FORMAS.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Urban StudiesMalmö UniversityMalmöSweden
  2. 2.Blekinge Institute of TechnologyKarlskronaSweden

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