The Value of Housing




This issue of Footprint brings together housing-as-design with housing-as-policy and housing-as-market to discuss what is, today, the value of housing. It discusses how the architecture of housing plays a role in changing behavioural norms and models of subjectivation promoted by the neoliberal ideological agenda. The contributions included in this issue examine different ways of addressing the production of housing either as a social right or a commodity, or both combined. Reviewing cases from North America, Europe and Asia, they discuss the extent to which the social and economic agendas of the public sector and the market determine the architecture of housing. The background of the discussion is defined by a deadlock: the architectural discourse calls upon the state to re-provide housing and solve the crisis, while the neoliberal state is not interested in commissioning housing. Against this background, this issue examines how the architecture discipline can engage in new ways of responding to the neoliberal state of affairs, examining the entwined relation between ‘architecture’ as a cultural product and ‘housing’ as a socioeconomic need.

Author Biographies

Nelson Mota, Delft University of Technology

Nelson Mota is Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Architecture, TU Delft. He has authored the book A Arquitectura do Quotidiano (The Architecture of Everyday, 2010) and co-edited Footprint 17: ‘The “Bread & Butter” of Architecture: Investigating Everyday Practices’ (2015, with Ricardo Agarez) and Joelho 8: ‘Ideas and Practices for the European City’ (2017, with José António Bandeirinha and Luís Miguel Correia). Mota investigates the intersections between vernacular social and spatial practices and the architecture of housing. He is production editor and member of the editorial board of Footprint and of the book series DASH – Delft Architectural Studies on Housing.

Yael Allweil, Technion - Israel Institute of Technology

Yael Allweil is an architect and Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Architecture and Town Planning at the Technion, Israel, where she heads the Housing Architecture, History and Theory research group. She completed her PhD in architecture history at UC Berkeley exploring the history of Israel-Palestine as a history of the gain and loss of citizen housing. Her research was published in the monograph Homeland: Zionism as Housing Regime 1860–2011 (Routledge, 2017) and several journal articles in Urban Studies, Footprint, Architecture Beyond Europe, City, TDSR and IJIA. During 2019–20 Yael will chair the research group ‘Re-Theorising Housing as Architecture’ at the Institute for Advanced Studies (IIAS) in Jerusalem (with Gaia Caramellino and Susanne Schindler). Yael’s work involves academic research and activism in the context of the Israeli housing social movement.


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Allweil, Yael. Homeland: Zionism as Housing Regime, 1860-2011. Planning, History and Environment Series. Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon; New York, NY: Routledge, 2017.

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