The Housing Europe podcast airing from the heart of the European Capital offers insights into the work of public, cooperative and social housing providers across Europe. Why is it legitimate to claim that they offer more than just housing; rather a home to people. Tune in to discover the urban, social, environmental and economic impact that access to affordable housing has in our communities.
List of episodes
- Episode 1 - The State of Housing in the EU 2017
In the first episode, we discuss with the President and the Research Coordinator of Housing Europe the current State of Housing in the EU but also what is happening in France where the proposed reform of the social housing sector has triggered a lot of political tension.
Listen to the episode
- Episode 2 - Affordable housing and sustainable cities: a dynamic relationship
Cities are the focus point of the second episode of 'Making a house a home'. As we are becoming increasingly “an urban species” according to the writer and journalist, Doug Saunders what is the role of affordable housing in the urbanized environment? What are the dynamics of the relationship between public, cooperative and social housing providers and the local authorities at European and at global level?
We discuss all that with Agata Krause, Policy Advisor on Housing and Social Affairs of EUROCITIES, the network of major European Cities and Özgür Öner, Head of the EU Office of GdW- the Federal Association of German Housing and Real Estate Companies and Chair of the Housing Europe Urban Affairs Committee.
- Episode 3 - Housing First
In the third episode of 'Making a house a home' we turn our spotlight to Housing First.
Why is this probably the best way to fight homelessness? What does the case of Finland show to the rest of EU Member States? What is the aim of the Housing First Europe Hub? Samara Jones from FEANTSA, Programme Coordinator of the Housing First Europe Hub provides us with an insider’s view on this innovative approach.
In the second part of our show we welcome Björn Mallants, the General Director of VVH, the Association of Flemish Social Housing Companies, a member of Housing Europe to talk about their experience on the ground with the Housing First scheme. How is it working in Flanders? Where do they draw their inspiration from?
- Episode 4 - EU support for social housing and a meetup with the largest housing provider in France
In the fourth episode of 'Making a house a home' we turn our spotlight to funding. How can public, cooperative and social housing providers get support for innovative projects from the European Union? What are the options available? What are the keys for a successful application and which topics are on the priority list at the moment? We will try to put together all the pieces of this puzzle along with the Policy Officer of Housing Europe, Edit Lakatos who has been monitoring closely both the potential and the impact of EU funding on social housing.
In the second part of our show, we will have a call with the Secretary General and Member of the Board of Directors at CDC Habitat, Vincent Mahe. CDC Habitat is the largest housing provider in France offering a really diverse portfolio of services. Mr Mahe explains how the French social housing model works and the key role of Caisse des Depots, estimates the impact of the ongoing reform in the country but also shares the main elements of an interesting agreement for international cooperation with one of the leading housing providers in Germany.
- Episode 5 - Pathways to social inclusion
We are back after quite a while indeed- sorry for the gap. We hope you missed us, we certainly did. And here we are, reaching out to you again from Brussels with an episode dedicated to an issue everyone in Europe has been talking about over the last years. Migration. The refugee crisis, the action plan, the integration process… These are just a few of the keywords that have been coming up again and again in the news. We will try to make the link with the place that is the key for the migration challenge in Europe and that is… housing.
Part of today’s fifth episode will be brought to you from the European Parliament where the final event of the Designing Inclusion Erasmus Plus project was held on October 18th. We will be hearing from the people behind it, especially the academic staff from the KU Leuven what are the project’s main findings. How does one city produce inclusive urban spaces? We will also meet the Italian, Socialist MEP Brando Benifei who has been the Rapporteur of the European Parliament Report on 'Refugees: social inclusion and integration into the labour market'. What is the policymakers’ view on the issue?
In the second part of today’s show we will ask Housing Europe’s Research Assistant, Mariel Whelan to give us an overview of the key findings of the latest briefing produced by the European Federation of Public, Cooperative and Social Housing entitled ‘Pathways to Social Inclusion’. Finally, Fleur Eymann, Responsible for PR and Communications at Startblok Riekerhaven, the project everyone is talking about when referring to successful case studies of inclusive housing projects explains how they manage to co-house in harmony Dutch students and young migrants who have been granted asylum in the country.
- Episode 6 - Housing for All (from Vienna)
In this episode we reach out to you from Vienna and the venue of the international conference entitled ‘Housing for All’. We used the visit of our delegation to the Austrian capital for this event to hold two interviews that shed light to affordable housing from different starting points.
In the first part of our show, we meet the UN Special Rapporteur on Adequate Housing, Leilani Farha, a leading voice in raising awareness on a number of key challenges for affordable housing- first and foremost financialization- through a number of impactful initiatives such as the Global Campaign ‘The Shift’.
In the second part, we see how Barcelona and New York city work together to address their affordable housing challenge. What are the issues that this transatlantic partnership is built upon? What kind of solutions are they looking for? How can you help them? Eduard Cabre Romans, International Relations Consultant to the Barcelona Housing Department has the answers to all these questions.
- Episode 7 - The life cycles of our homes
This time, we dive into the circular world. The circular economy is all over the place in the Brussels policy scene since the European Commission presented the Circular Economy Package in early 2018. But what do we actually mean with the term ‘circular economy’? What is the potential of the housing sector in delivering an eco-friendy future for our cities? We address these key questions with 2 excellent guests. TU Delft Assistant Professor of Housing Management, Gerard Van Bortel helps us understand better the challenges that circular building adaptation brings for public, cooperative and social housing providers but also the multiple benefits linked with it. Theresa Heitzlhofer, communications manager at Alchemia Nova in Vienna offers us insights from one of the demonstration cases of the Horizon 2020 'Houseful' project. We end our journey in Denmark where Lejerbo, a member of our Danish member organisation BL, is building the World's first social housing unit after circular principles.
- Episode 8 - Getting a taste of how the EU Green Deal looks like in practice
Housing Europe organised a field trip to the UIA backed project ‘Superlocal’ in Kerkrade in the Netherlands for a delegation consisting of MEP, Kim Van Sparrentak and European Commission Officials from DG Grow and the Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (EASME). Participants had the chance to meet the stakeholders that made this truly innovative, circular social housing project possible. We followed the trip that aimed at offering a taste of how the European Commission flagship initiative, the EU Green Deal looks like in practice. Housing Europe showcasedto EU Institutions’ Delegation how a Dutch social housing company and local authorities are pushing the frontiers of circular economy
Stay with us to hear what were the reactions of quite a diverse group of participants when they arrived at a demolition site that is giving birth to new affordable homes in an area that is trying to revitalise, if not reinvent, itself.
- Episode 9 - The Coronavirus Housing Crisis
As part of our Coronavirus podcast series, we discuss with KU Leuven Professor Manuel Aalbers, coordinator of the Real Estate/Financial Complex research project the ‘Coronavirus Housing Crisis’, as he described it in his recent article on Tribune Magazine with the same title. Professor Aalbers stresses that the latest recession may not have been caused by housing but it will play a big role in how it unfolds – from tenants facing eviction to bursting debt bubbles and falling house prices. We had a Skype Call with Manuel Aalbers to talk about the characteristics of this housing crisis and eventual ways out of it…
- Episode 10 - A pandemic as the death sentence for policies at the root of inequalities
In episode 2 of our Coronavirus podcast series, we welcome the Secretary General of Housing Europe, Sorcha Edwards. Since it’s been a while we can’t meet in the office, we had a Skype Call with Sorcha to discuss which aspects of an existing, underlying housing crisis has the current pandemic put forward and the response of the public, cooperative and social housing providers to this extremely challenging reality. After dealing with the present emergency, what should a medium to long term policy response look like? Stay with us until the end of our conversation to find out.
- Episode 11 - The key success of the EU Green Deal would be to help all members of society
We’re back with yet another episode of our series around the housing aspect of the Coronavirus Crisis, in which we are addressing a number of questions that are probably in your mind as well, with one special guest each time.
Today, we’re making the link with the European Commission flagship initiative, the EU Green Deal and the so called ‘Renovation Wave’ that is envisaged to improve the condition of Europe’s building stock. Ciaran Cuffe is an Irish Member of the European Parliament with the Greens and is currently busy being the Rapporteur of the much-expect report “Maximising the energy efficiency potential of the EU building stock”. This is supposed to set out the view of the Parliament on most aspects of energy efficiency in buildings, while also making concrete suggestions for the content of the Renovation Wave. We asked Ciaran to have a Skype Call to discuss the new COVID19 reality that is taking shape will influence the priorities and objectives of the EU Green Deal. What needs to be changed in the way we approach energy efficiency in our buildings? We have also asked Ciaran how this Report aims to address the different segments of the housing market and we concluded our conversation wondering whether the EU Green Deal and the ‘Renovation Wave’ become the EU’s 2020 Marshall Plan. Stay with us to find all the answers.
- Episode 12 - A message for "decent and affordable housing for all" from the European Parliament
After discussing the EU Green Deal and its ambition for a Renovation Wave, today we’re heading back to the European Parliament to meet one of its Dutch Members with the Greens, Kim van Sparrentak.
Kim is currently rapporteur of the European Parliament upcoming own initiative report on “Decent and Affordable Housing for All” and the timing unfortunately couldn’t have been more appropriate given that the Coronavirus Crisis has brought to surface Europe’s housing challenges for good. During our phone call, we asked Kim van Sparrentak how the ‘Coronavirus Housing Crisis’ we have already talked about in one of the previous podcasts of this series is reflected in her report. How can the EU Green Deal and its Renovation Wave, in particular, be a win win for the housing sector? And most importantly, what are the tools that Brussels should add to the national policy toolboxes when it comes to housing?
- Episode 13 - Good land policy involves planning for the wider public interest
This episode kicks off a mini-series dedicated to #Housing2030, a joint international initiative of housing experts from over 56 governments through UNECE and UN Habitat and 43,000 affordable housing providers and neighbourhood developers represented by Housing Europe with the aim to improve the capacity of national and local governments to formulate policies that improve housing affordability and sustainability.
As the countdown to the first virtual event of the ‘Housing 2030’ initiative, taking place on May 20th has started we’re looking at its central theme which is Land with the help of 3 excellent guests. For this first episode, I am thrilled to welcome Dr. Julie Lawson, Honorary Associate Professor for the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute in the Centre for Urban Research of RMIT University. Julie has undertaken the task of drafting the Housing 2030 report in co-operation with a team of authors including Professor Michelle Norris (University College Dublin; Irish Housing Finance Agency), Dr. Kat Grimsley (George Mason School of Business) and Dr. Sergio Nasarre-Aznar (UNESCO Housing Chair at the University Rovira i Virgili).
However, today, I’ve asked to have a Skype Call to discuss the finding of another insightful and timely piece of work she has put together along with Professor Hannu Ruanovaara. The purpose of this international review, that was funded by the Academy of Finland, is to examine the range of land policy instruments governments used to influence housing affordability and social inclusion to inform best practice in policy development. The land policy instruments covered include: Public land banking, Public land leasing, Land re-adjustment, Land value recapture, Regulatory planning, Comprehensive neighbourhood planning and addressing real estate platform economy. The geographical scope includes Europe, Asia, North American and Australia.
On a sunny afternoon on the last day of April, we discussed with Dr. Julie Lawson why the relationship between land policy, social cohesion and housing is fundamental, the role of citizens in decisions around land management as well as what it takes to stop the overwhelming trend of financialization of land and housing. Stay tuned!
- Episode 14 - It all comes down to what piece of land you can afford
Paraphrasing Mark Twain one could say “take good care of Land, they aren't making it anymore”. This is why when one needs to look at ways to boost provision of affordable housing until 2030, land is definitely one of the major points for consideration. This is episode 2 of our mini-series dedicated to Housing 2030, the joint international initiative of housing experts from over 56 governments through UNECE and UN Habitat and 43,000 affordable housing providers and neighbourhood developers represented by Housing Europe. It aims to improve the capacity of national and local governments to formulate policies that improve housing affordability and sustainability.
As the countdown to the first virtual event of the ‘Housing 2030’ initiative, taking place on May 20th has started we’re looking at its central theme which is Land with the help of 3 excellent guests. Today, I am particularly happy to welcome to ‘Making a house a home’ Independent housing policy consultant, author and former Downing Street Special Adviser for housing, Toby Lloyd. Toby had long experience as Head of Policy and Housing Development with Shelter in the UK and has been a co-author of the truly influential book ‘Rethinking the Economics of Land and Housing’ that was published in 2017 by ZED Books. The book managed to explain in a very accessible and thought-provoking way how many of the key challenges facing modern economies - including housing crises, financial instability and growing inequalities - are intimately tied to the land economy.
Having worked on housing and land from multiple roles, Toby Lloyd is the kind of person one would like to answer questions such as Why isn’t it fair to treat land like any other capital asset? What are the risks of the commodifaction of land? During our Skype call we also asked him to explain how the so called ‘house-price credit cycle impacts the affordability of land. We concluded our virtual meeting with some practical thoughts around what can be actually done to control land prices but also to free up land for development of public, cooperative and social housing. Here’s our interview with Toby Lloyd.
- Episode 15 - Paris: the housing strategy at the heart of a functional and socially mixed '15-minute' city
One could call it the ‘holy grail’ of today’s highly urbanized world. The way authorities manage it shapes the way we live, including how much public and green space we can benefit from, how we can move around, what types of services we can find around us and most importantly what kind of home we can access. Urban Land is a cornerstone of modern cities and today’s focus point of ‘Making a house a home’. In the third episode of our mini series dedicated to the ‘Housing 2030’ joint international initiative of Housing Europe, UN Habitat and UNECE around housing affordability, we’ll be looking at how one of the world’s major cities, namely Paris is dealing with the question of land and how this in effect influences the provision of social and affordable housing. To do that, we’re privileged to have the view of a true expert.
Olivier Richard is Urban planner and Designer at APUR, the Paris Urbanism Agency, a private body that has accompanied public urban policy since 1967. Its mission is to document, analyse and develop forward looking strategies which address the urban and societal evolution of Paris and Greater Paris. Olivier Richard has been involved in the agency’s work for over 20 years and we contacted him to discuss the links between planning and housing, between land and affordability at a time that Paris seems to be undergoing a major transformation. What are the tools that the French capital is deploying to improve the provision of affordable homes? Where have the authorities been successful so far and what are the challenges ahead? And finally, where does housing fit into the much-discussed vision unveiled by Mayor Anne Hidalgo for the so-called ’15-minute city’? Olivier Richard has all the answers. Stay tuned…