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The key questions posed by the research focused on the one hand on the conditions under which municipal portfolios are expanded and the concepts behind this expansion. On the other, the research examined the aims and strategies applied when expanding municipal housing portfolios.
Tasks facing municipalities and structural frameworks:
Situation and motivations of housing associations:
Scale and practicalities of portfolio expansion:
Aims of portfolio expansion:
Framework conditions for building new housing:
The investigation employed a sophisticated set of methods.
At the heart of the research project was the analysis of 20 case studies. Here, strategies and framework conditions for expanding municipal housing portfolios at a municipal and housing association level were established and made clear. A variety of methodological elements were used (document analysis, quantitative analysis, qualitative empirical social research).
Before the case study analysis began, a short written questionnaire was conducted on municipal housing policy and expansion practices for municipal housing portfolios. This short questionnaire was aimed at municipalities with an active housing policy and a housing market that was under strain. On the one hand, the questionnaire aimed to gather and verify information about housing policy strategies and measures. At the same time, the questionnaire enquired about willingness to take part in the case study analysis.
Based on the responses to the questionnaire, 20 municipalities were selected as case study cities. The selection criteria took the form of requirements for the individual municipalities as well as collective requirements for all of the municipalities together. These included:
The case studies served as a source of practical knowledge and experience regarding the management and impact of municipal housing portfolios in local housing markets. The investigations in the case studies cities took place between September 2018 and February 2019. In-depth interviews were held with representatives from municipal administrations, municipal housing associations and other stakeholders in the housing market. In the next stage of the process, a workshop was carried out with the case study cities in which the key results were reflected on and discussed.
The research approach looked at municipalities and municipal housing associations in equal measure. The relevant collaborations and municipal housing associations are often regarded as a homogeneous group. The similarities and differences were established and carried over into conclusions and recommendations.