On 3 October a ‘Housing for All’ themed conference focusing on the ‘Role of Housing Associations from South to North Europe’ took place in Albania, Tirana. The event was organised by the National Housing Agency, a Housing Europe member and the Albanian Ministry of Urban Development in collaboration with Housing Europe.
This policy transfer oriented event included workshops on: Housing Challenges and Policies for Social and Affordable Housing; the Role and Development of Social Housing Organizations and on Financial Instruments for Affordable and Social Housing.
The event gathered government officials, representatives of social housing organisations and representatives of cities from across Europe, especially South East Europe. The conference was chaired by the Doris Andoni, General Director of National Housing Agency of Albania with the support of the Housing Europe Observatory Research Coordinator, Dr Agata Krause, who outlined main housing challenges according to Housing Europe members.
During his introductory speech, the President of Housing Europe, Marc Calon stressed that there is more attention that should be placed on housing and affordable housing for all in urban areas, towns and cities and that EU member states, local authorities and housing providers all over Europe need to work together in order to boost the supply of affordable homes.
Housing Europe member organisations contributed to the various panel disucssions. Doris Andoni (EKB, Albania) delivered a presentation on housing policy challenges in Albania, Sebastien Garnier (AEDES, the Netherlands) on managing housing needs and Marco Corradi (FEDERCASA, Italy) on financing affordable housing prompted dynamic discussion about potential for learning lessons in Southern and Eastern European Context.
The event was a first step within the initiative taken by the European Federation of Public, Cooperative and Social Housing to bring experts on housing policy and practice from within the Housing Europe membership or external experts recommended by members to support the process of housing policy development in countries without a strong public, cooperative or social housing sector. The need for such a Network of Experts, a platform for housing knowledge exchange within and beyond Europe, was emphasized by various participants, while Housing Europe members expressed their willingness to help.