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Working papers from the Economics Department of the OECD that cover the full range of the Department’s work including the economic situation, policy analysis and projections; fiscal policy, public expenditure and taxation; and structural issues including ageing, growth and productivity, migration, environment, human capital, housing, trade and investment, labour markets, regulatory reform, competition, health, and other issues.
The views expressed in these papers are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of the OECD or of the governments of its member countries.
French Social Housing in an International Context
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- Kathleen Scanlon1, Christine Whitehead1
- Author Affiliations
- 1: London School of Economics, United Kingdom
- 12 mai 2011
- Bibliographic information
In this paper we describe the main features of the French social housing system as viewed from abroad, and place it within the context of systems in other major developed countries, particularly in Europe. At 17% of the total stock the social sector in France is of similar scale to many other European countries but aims to play a more =universalist‘ role. Moreover the sector still benefits from a special circuit of finance as well as direct subsidies to a greater degree than many comparator countries. Even so, increasing proportions of social tenants come from lower income groups and the government has legislated for rights to assistance. In this context we examine the comparative evidence on the stock of social housing and new construction in the sector; financing and subsidy regimes; systems for allocating tenants to social-housing dwellings; and the resulting demographics. We identify some French policies and practices that reflect the country‘s relative interest in maintaining a traditional social sector and areas such as public/private partnership where France has acted as leader in policy development. We also identify aspects of social housing where France is anomalous in a European context, as well as some where policy appears to have limited economic rationale. Finally, we make some observations about possible future policy directions. This Working Paper relates to the 2011 OECD Economic Survey of France (www.oecd.org/eco/surveys/france).
- French housing policy, housing subsidies, comparative housing policy, social housing
- Classification JEL:
- H42: Public Economics / Publicly Provided Goods / Publicly Provided Private Goods
- H75: Public Economics / State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations / State and Local Government: Health; Education; Welfare; Public Pensions
- R21: Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics / Household Analysis / Housing Demand
- R30: Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics / Real Estate Markets, Spatial Production Analysis, and Firm Location / General
- R31: Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics / Real Estate Markets, Spatial Production Analysis, and Firm Location / Housing Supply and Markets
- R38: Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics / Real Estate Markets, Spatial Production Analysis, and Firm Location / Government Policy