The most comprehensive survey of the current crisis, Urban Warfare charts how the financial crisis and wider urban politics have left millions homeless and in financial desperation across the world.
The financialization of housing has become a global catastrophe, leaving millions desperate and homeless. Since the 2008 financial collapse, models of home ownership, originating in the US and UK, are being exported around the world. Using examples from across the globe, Rolnik shows how our cities have been sold to construction companies and banks, while supported by government-facilitated schemes, such as “the right to buy” subsidies and micro-financing. Our homes and neighbourhoods have become the “last subprime frontiers of capitalism,” organised by those who benefit the most.
Raquel Rolnik is a professor of Urban Planning at the University of São Paulo. She was National Secretary for Urban Programmes of the Brazilian Ministry of Cities (2003–2007). From 2008 to 2014, she held the mandate of UN Special Rapporteur on adequate housing and visited the US and UK, among other countries, causing some controversy on housing policies.