• Vincent Gruis
  • Nico Nieboer


Social housing management is changing in response to developments in its institutional and economic context. In many countries, housing systems are in transition as part of a more general trend towards privatisation and decentralisation of public services. These transformations have lead to a more market-oriented social housing management (e.g. Priemus et al., 1999). In Britain, for example, housing associations gained the governments preference as social housing providers above municipalities, among others because they are more detached from the government and are more like ‘real’ market parties (Walker and Van der Zon, 2000). In Germany, the distinction between social and commercial landlords has faded with the act that repealed the Public-Use Housing Law (“Wohnungsgemeinnützigkeitsgesetz”) in 1984 (e.g. Kleinman, 1996). In Australia the current Commonwealth-State Housing Agreement allows State housing authorities greater flexibility in determining housing strategies which are appropriate for their State, as opposed to the attempt to impose national consistency which had characterised previous arrangements (e.g. Larkin, 2000, p. 46). These reforms in the housing systems have often been accompanied by a reduction of government finance and subsidisation as we can see in for example in Sweden, England, The Netherlands and Australia (Boelhouwer, 1997, 1999; Smith and Oxley, 1997; Larkin, 2000). As a result, social landlords have become more dependent of the private capital market and are forced to operate in a more business-like way to keep their financiers satisfied (e.g. Walker and Van der Zon, 2000; Boelhouwer, 1999).


Strategic Planning Housing Market Market Orientation Social Housing Housing Stock 
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© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2004

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  • Vincent Gruis
  • Nico Nieboer

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