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Housing & Homelessness: Overcoming housing inequalities - SPY00001H

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  • Department: Social Policy and Social Work
  • Module co-ordinator: Dr. Alison Wallace
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: H
  • Academic year of delivery: 2024-25

Module summary

Housing is fundamental to wellbeing and security, and confers on residents a range of economic, social and cultural benefits. Despite its importance, it is widely agreed that the UK housing market is broken and consequently housing has risen the political and public agenda. But how can we make sense of the current housing crisis and what should be done? What is the role of the state and markets in providing safe, secure and affordable housing? How can we organise national housing policy in a country with such significant spatial wealth and economic inequalities? Why are so many people homeless and what can policymakers do to address this? These are just some of the questions this module asks through an historical, social and policy exploration of housing in the UK.

Professional requirements


Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Semester 1 2024-25

Module aims

  • To explore UK housing policy in-depth

  • To provide a basic tool-kit of knowledge about the housing system, understanding the importance of place and property on people’s life chances

  • To provide an understanding of the interaction between social policy, markets, and geography to deliver fair housing futures

Module learning outcomes

  • To develop specialist knowledge of the structure and functioning of the contemporary UK housing system

  • To critically engage with the historical, social and cultural foundations of UK housing policy

  • To consolidate knowledge of key contemporary issues in housing policy and how these relate to the wider social policy agenda in different spatial markets

  • To critique the various sources of evidence through which housing policy is contested and built

Module content

Safe, secure, sustainable and affordable housing is essential to allow us to flourish in other aspects of our lives, although for many these qualities are not easy to achieve. This module is designed to explore the relationship between our homes and property markets, the places we live, government policy and how in combination these impact our lives. You will explore aspects of the housing crisis and consider policy solutions.


Task Length % of module mark
N/A 100

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
N/A 100

Module feedback

Feedback will be given in accordance with the University Policy on feedback in the Guide to Assessment as well as in line with the School policy.

Indicative reading

Gallent, N. (2020). Whose housing crisis? assets and homes in a changing economy Bristol, Bristol, Policy Press.

Clapham, D. (2018). Remaking Housing Policy: An International Study. London, Routledge.

Lund, B. (2017). Understanding housing policy. In Understanding Housing Policy (pp. 1–22). Bristol, Policy Press.

Madden, D. and Marcuse, P. (2016) In Defense of Housing, London, Verso Books

Tunstall, B. (n.d.). The Fall and Rise of Social Housing. Bristol, Policy Press

Davis, C. (2013). Finance for housing : an introduction. Bristol: Policy Press

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.