Why is the time for an International Festival for Social Housing right? As a proud co-organizer of the first global celebration of the long tradition of decent, affordable housing for all, we at Housing Europe suggest a few reasons, while we pick the most relevant conferences, workshops and debates to our members out of the diverse line-up of 42 events...
Getting our facts straight in this post-truth world
By Sorcha Edwards, Housing Europe Secretary General
You don’t know what you have until it’s gone… This widely shared life lesson corresponds to the public, cooperative and social housing, too. Access to a decent, affordable home is the foundation of pretty much everything else. At the same time the lack of it is at the core of the urban crisis that unfolds in many metropolitan centres across Europe, widening the inequalities and generating a number of social challenges. We must keep in mind that there is no magic switch. Once decision makers take steps back concerning housing policies, it’s very difficult to recover. It’s very hard to start a housing system from scratch.
The International Social Housing Festival (ISHF) is a timely occasion for all of us to make noise in support of what we have in this post-truth era that reproduces stereotypes and myths around housing. We have many reasons to celebrate as well as numerous great examples to share of the work housing associations carry out on the ground changing people’s lives. There’s still a lot to be done, many changes we have to embrace so that we can provide the future homes. We therefore need a broad alliance of all forces to deliver this vision. Starting from the ISHF we invite you to be part of it, too!
Our shortlist of ISHF events
By the team of Housing Europe
- 15 June
The Policy Conference ‘Social Housing: Looking back, Moving Forward; empbracing change to deliver the future’ jointly organised by Housing Europe and Aedes will give you an unmissable overview of the big changes and challenges facing the sector around Europe and concrete examples of innovative ways to manage those changes.
- 13 June
The Opening Event of the Festival will feature Doug Saunders, acclaimed journalist and author of 'Arrival Cities' that captivates exceptionally how the largest Migration in History is reshaping our world as well as Professor, Maarten Van Ham, the expert voice on issues related to segregation and other urban challenges.
Legacoop Abitanti are organising an event on Collaborative housing. Taking advantage of the opportunity to engage in a debate about how the collaborative housing can deliver positive social impact to local communities, this event looks at exploring the diversification of services offered besides the dwelling as a response to emerging needs of residents. The aim is twofold: first, to raise awareness of existing initiatives, and second, to inspire organizations similar to us to take action together, co-designing new tools to be replicated and disseminated, in order to upgrade skills, to share models and transfer knowledge and practices to each other.
L’Union Sociale pour l’Habitat will host their own mini cinema party! To emphasize the social aspect of housing USH annually invites film directors to create short, fiction films about the lives of people living in HLM (Habitation à Loyer Modéré, literally translated: ‘rent controlled housing’). L’Union Sociale pour l‘Habitat will screen three short films, ‘La Fille de Baltimore’, ‘Le grand bain,’ and ‘Gagarine’. After the screenings, participants will have the opportunity to exchange ideas, viewpoints, and visions for social housing in the presence of the film directors.
The Affordable Housing Bond is used for financing social housing corporations, which in turn may then provide affordable housing and high quality living to the lower-income, Dutch population. As a sponsor of this event, NWB Bank gathers an international group of experts to reflect on the opportunities and challenges of impact investments for social housing.
OTB Research for the Built Environment (TUD), in close cooperation with the European Network for Housing Research, is organising a two-day workshop on the future of social housing in Europe. The event is open to all housing scholars who want to present a paper or poster about the role and future of public, social, and affordable housing in Europe and beyond.
- 19 June
The Amsterdam Federation of Social Housing Associations (AFWC), also celebrating 100 years, on June 19th will bring housing companies from European Capitals to compare experiences on how they are dealing with local housing challenges
- 14 June
EURHONET, the European Federation for Living and the International Union of Tenants will showcase best practices on inclusiveness, migration and refugee housing. Earlier that day, EURHONET and EFL will share with the Festival participants the lessons learned from the European Projects, TRIME and DREEAM that aim to scale up both the technical renovation and human aspects of energy efficiency.
- 16 June
FEANTSA, the European Federation of National Organisations Working with the Homeless will feature four presentations about successful Housing First initiatives in social housing sectors across Europe. The event will make the case for the importance of involving housing providers in the development of Housing First practices, while it will show how the Housing First Europe Hub can support social housing providers through training, research, and advocacy tools.