New report from White Rose intern highlights the scale of the housing challenge in the Western EU

houses from above

As part the ongoing relationship between the University of Sheffield, the White Rose Partnership and the UK Centre for Collaborative Evidence, Aya Nay Haddad has undertaken an internship in the White Rose office in Brussels. There, she has focused on the challenges facing Western EU nations to provide adequate, affordable housing.

The report she has produced aims to provide UK housing researchers, policy makers and practitioners with a resource that situates the UK in a wider comparative European context.

Read the full report, here

Aya's report provides an excellent resource for anyone interested in understanding how countries across Europe are responding to the growing challenge of providing affordable and appropriate housing for all.

Professor John Flint

The key issues that characterise current housing challenges across many nations in the EU include:

  • Affordability within the rental (social and private) sectors, due to high demand, urbanisation, migration from rural to urban areas, high construction costs, a political and cultural emphasis on home ownership, and a lack of robust or effective rental regulation
  • A shortage of social housing, due to the rising costs of housing, unregulated rents in the private sector, slow construction rates, ageing populations, higher rates of homeless people due to high private rents and selling off social housing stock. This has exacerbated homelessness and poor housing conditions for many vulnerable groups
  • The legacy of the 2008 Financial Crash, which has led to high mortgage debts, slow construction rates and a lackof focus on long-term measures
  • Boom-bust’ has had an enormous impact on housing policy, which has in-turn affected the housing situation

University of Sheffield Faculty of Social Sciences Director of Research and Innovation, Professor John Flint, said: "I have been delighted to be able to support our White Rose Brussels team in providing opportunities for graduate interns such as Aya to undertake policy-orientated research at the heart of the EU. Aya's report provides an excellent resource for anyone interested in understanding how countries across Europe are responding to the growing challenge of providing affordable and appropriate housing for all."

Phil Holliday of the White Rose Partnership, Brussels, also commented: "Aya wrote the Housing Challenges policy report as part of her 7-month internship at the White Rose Office in Brussels. She worked very diligently with Prof. John Flint and CACHE to produce a policy report that is particularly relevant to all three White Rose Universities, as they all have research strengths in urban studies and sustainable cities."