Setting It Up: Definition
Institutional Issues

References are arranged following the project phases. ‘Must read’ are indicated by Must Read and most include a copy of the Table of Contents or an abstract.

Over the years the understanding of institutions parallels the sophistication in understanding of financial issues. The literature on institutions focuses on two areas. First, the larger institutional framework of rules within which development takes place. Second, the potentials and limits of various organizations involved in housing and urban development.

The major sub-areas of institutional significance are:

  1. Enabling and Working with the Markets
  2. Community Participation
  3. NGOs and other Intermediaries
  4. Capacity Building, Training
  5. Property Rights

Key references include:

“Formalizing the Informal? The Transformation of Cairo’s Refuse Collection System.” Assaad, Ragui. 1996. Journal of Planning Education and Research. 16 (2), pp 115-126.

“Getting the Incentives Right.” Baken, Robert and Jan van der Linden. 1993. Third World Planning Review 15 (1).

“Beyond Legal Pluralism: Towards a New Approach to Law in the Informal Sector.” Benton, Lauren. 1994. Social and Legal Studies Vol. 3: pp 223-242.

“World Underneath: The Origins, Dynamics, and Effects of the Informal Economy.” Castells, Manuel and Alejandro Portes. 1989. In The Informal Economy: Studies in Advanced and Less Developed Countries. Edited by A. Portes, M. Castells, and Lauren Benton. Baltimore: The John Hopkins University Press.

Must ReadThe Other Path: The Invisible Revolution in the Third World. De Soto, H. 1989. New York: Harper and Row. (Table of Contents)

“Land and Housing in Third World Cities: Are Public and Private Strategies Contradictory?” Durand-Lasserve, Alain 1987. Cities 4 (4): pp 325-338.

Must ReadReforming Urban Land Policies and Institutions in Developing Countries. Farvacque, Catherine and Patrick McAuslan. 1992. The World Bank, Urban Management Program. (Table of Contents)

“Low-income Housing and the State.” Gilbert, A. and P. Ward. 1982. In Urbanization in Contemporary Latin America. Edited by A. Gilbert, J, Hardoy and R. Ramirez, pp 79-128. Chichester, Wiley.

Must ReadHousing, the State and the Poor. Gilbert, A. and P. Ward. 1985. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. (Table of Contents)

“The Difference Between Truth and Adequacy: (Re)joining Baken, van der Linden and Malpezzi.” Jones, Gareth A. 1996. Third World Planning Review 18 (2): pp 243-256.

“Getting the Incentives Right - A Reply.” Malpezzi, S. 1994. Third World Planning Review 16 (4): pp 451-466.

“Institutional/Legal Arrangements for the Improved Administration of Land Development.” McAuslan, P. 1992. Regional Development Dialogue 13(1): pp 14-32.

Understanding the Developing Metropolis: Lessons from the City Study of Bogota and Cali, Columbia. Mohan, R. 1994. New York: Oxford University Press for The World Bank.

Must Read“An Idea in Good Currency and How it Grew: The Informal Sector.” Peattie, L. 1987. World Development 15 (7): pp 851-860. (Abstract)

“Cities Without Land Markets: Lessons of the Failed Socialist Experiment.” Renaud, B. and A. Bertrand. 1993. Scheduled to appear in: Urban Land and Housing Reform in Socialist and Formerly Socialist Countries. Edited by G. Tolley and D. Holleb.

“Learning Before Doing: A Critical Evaluation of the Privatization Concept in Shelter Policies of International Institutions.” Sanyal, Bish. 1986. Open House International 11 (4).

“Urban Housing in Africa: The Changing Role of Government Policy.” Stren, R. E. 1990. In Housing Africa’s Urban Poor. Edited by P. Amis and P. Lloyd, pp 35-53. New York: Manchester University Press.

“Housing Market Operations.” Struyk, Ray et. al. 1990. In The Market for Shelter in Indonesian Cities. Urban Institute.

“Who Shall Do What About Housing?” Turner, John F. C. 1982. In Urbanization in Contemporary Latin America. Edited by Alan Gilbert, J. E. Hardoy, and R. Ramirez, pp 191-204. New York: John Wiley and Sons.

Cities, People & Poverty: Urban Development Cooperation for the 1990s. UNDP. 1991. A UNDP Strategy Paper. New York: United Nations Development Program.

Enabling and Working with Markets

The significance of the current policy focus on enabling and working with markets reflects the current policy faith in the ability of markets to deliver in housing provision and urban upgrading. This policy strategy is loosely referred to as “enabling.” Operationally enabling is seen as constituting of decentralization of decision-making, privatization of delivery, demand-driven responses and deregulation.

Yet, in practice enabling still remains an ambiguous strategy. Not only is its precise definition difficult, but claims of policy success involving enabling are countered by claims of failure.

“Private Sector Participation in Land Development – Guidelines for Increasing Cooperation between Local Government and Private Developers.” Billand, Charles J. 1993. Habitat International 17 (2): pp 53-62.

“Bangkok: A Profile of an Efficiently Performing Housing Market.” Dowall, David E. 1989. Urban Studies 26: 327-339.

“A Second Look at the Bangkok Land and Housing Market.” Dowall, David E. 1992. Urban Studies 29 (1): pp 25-37

Housing Without Houses: Participation, Flexibility, Enablement. Hamdi, N. 1991. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold.

“Privatization and Housing Policy.” Linneman, Peter D., and Isaac F. Megbolugbe. 1994. Urban Studies 31 (44/45): pp 635-651.

“What have African Housing policies Wrought?” Malpezzi, S. and J. Sa-Adu. 1996. Real Estate Economics 24 (2): pp 133-160.

“Urbanization in Developing Countries.” Pugh, C. 1995. Cities 12 (6).

“Land Policies and Low-Income Housing in Developing Countries: A Review, with Reference to Kenya and India.” Pugh, Cedric. 1992 Land Use Policy, 9 (1): pp 47-63.

“The Provision of Low-cost Housing by Private Developers in Bangkok 1987-89: The Result of an Efficient Market?” Seik, Foo Tuan. 1992. Urban Studies 29 (7): pp 1137-1146.

Greater Bangkok Slum Housing Market Study, Final Report. Setchell, C. 1993. USAID Bangkok.

Must ReadGlobal Strategy for Shelter to the Year 2000. UNCHS. 1990. Nairobi: UNCHS. (Table of Contents)

“Housing the Urban Poor: What Can the Private Sector Do?” Wadhwa, K. 1987. Urban India 7(2): pp 89-101.

Business as Usual. Werna, Edmundo. 1996. Brookfield VT: Avery.

Housing Enabling Markets to Work, A World Bank Policy Paper, with Technical Supplements. World Bank 1993. Washington DC: The World Bank, (This paper was written by Shlomo Angel and Stephen K. Mayo).

“Creating an enabling environment for Housing: Recent Reforms in Mexico.” Zearley, Thomas Lee. 1993. Housing Policy Debate 4 (2): pp 239-249.

Community Participation

Literature that supports the idea of community participation makes four major claims. First, community participation leads to better results in project delivery because of a better chance of knowing beneficiary preference. Second, it leads to easier acceptance of project results by beneficiaries. Third, it leads to better economy of projects because of participation directly reducing costs and enhanced willingness to pay. And finally, community participation is a worthwhile end in itself.

But evidence from projects indicates that involving communities in projects is not that easy. There are two major problems. First, it is unclear how precisely to get the community involved, as opposed to the notion of a few leaders of the community getting involved. Second, it is not clear how desirable it is to increase community participation at the expense of project efficiency, although increasingly it is recognized that participation must occur for success in a project.

Community Initiatives in Urban Infrastructure. Cotton, A.P., Sohail, M., and Tayler, W.K. 1998. Water, Engineering and Development Centre, Loughborough University, UK. (Table of Contents)

Community Participation and Slum Housing, a Study of Bombay. Desai, Vandana. 1995. New Delhi: Sage Publications.

“The Politics of Conformity in Mexico City.” Eckstein, Susan. 1988. In The Urbanization of the Third World. Edited by Josef Gugler, pp. 294-307. New York: Oxford University Press.

The World Bank Participation Sourcebook. Environmentally Sustainable Development. Washington, D.C. 1996.

How Communities Organize Themselves. Fernandez, Keneth. 1997. Karachi: City Press.

Making Microplans: A community based process in programming and development. Reinhard Goethert and Nabeel Hamdi. IT Publications, 1988. Reprinted in Spanish by the Instituto de Desarrollo Economico del Banco Mundial. LA Microplanificaion: Un Proceso de Programación y Desarrollo con Case en la Comunidad. Washington, D.C. 1992.

Must ReadAction Planning for Cities: A Guide to Community Practice. Hamdi, Nabeel and Reinhard Goethert. 1997. Chichester: John Wiley & Sons. (Table of Contents)

Must ReadBuilding Community: A Third World Case Book. Edited by Bertha Turner, pp. 81-88. 1988. London: Building Community Books. (Note “Orangi Pilot Project, Karachi: A Low Cost Sewer System By Low-income Pakistanis.” Hasan, A.) (Table of Contents)

“Planning in Squatter Settlements: An Interview with a Community Leader.” Lauria, Donald T. and Dale Whittington. 1992. Journal of Planning Education and Research 9 (3): pp 207-212.

“Community Participation in Urban Projects in the Third World.” Moser, C. 1989. Progress in Planning Vol. 32, Part 2. Exeter, UK: Pergamon Press.

Community Participation in Development Projects: The World Bank Experience. Paul, S. 1987. World Bank Discussion Paper No. 6. Washington DC: The World Bank.

“Participation: A Case Study of How Invaders Organize, Negotiate and Interact with Government in Lima, Peru.” Peattie, L. 1990. Environment and Urbanization 2 (1): pp 19-30.

Participation in Practice: The Experience of the World Bank and Other Stakeholders. Rietbergen-McCracken, J. 1996. World Bank Discussion Paper No. 333. Washington DC: The World Bank.

“Potentials of Prefabrication for Self-help and Mutual-aid Housing in Developing Countries.” Stallen, Melanie, Yves Chabannes and Florian Steinberg. 1994. Habitat International 18 (2): pp 13-39.

“Issues in Self-Help and Self-Managed Housing.” Turner, John F. C. 1982. In Self-help Housing: A Critique. Edited by Peter M. Ward. London: Mansell Publishing Limited.

“Community Leadership and Self-help Housing.” Ward, P. and S. Chant. 1987. In Progress in Planning, Vol. 27, Part 2. Exeter, UK: Pergamon Press.

Participation: The View From Above. Wolfe, M. 1983. Geneva: United Nations Research Institute for Social Development.

“Community Participation in Low-income Housing Projects: Problems and Prospects.” Yap, Kioe-Sheng. 1990. Community Development Journal 25 (1): pp 56-65.

NGOs and other Intermediaries

The literature recognizes that despite the significance of community participation, it is likely that communities need intermediaries such as non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and community-based organizations (CBOs) to mobilize and solicit participation. Apart from this, NGOs are also capable of helping with technical assistance and even financial support. The nonprofit ways of the NGOs and other intermediaries are seen as a middle path, distinct from the state and the market divide.

But it is unclear how efficient such intermediaries are? Or even how democratic in nature they are? There has also been criticism of the benign lens used to judge such organizations. This body of literature calls for the need to understand better the strength and weaknesses of NGOs and other intermediaries.

“Viable Self-Management: The FUNACOM Housing Programme of the Sao Paulo Municipality.” Denaldi, Rosana. 1997. Habitat International 21 (2): pp 213-227.

“Development Alternatives: The Challenge for NGOs.” Drabek, Anne Gordon. 1987. World Development, Special Issue 15 (Supplement).

Must Read“Community Groups and Non-Government Organizations in the Urban Field in Pakistan.” Hasan, Arif. 1990. Environment and Urbanization 2 (1): pp 74-86. (Abstract)

“Networks and Nonprofits: Opportunities and Challenges in an Era of Federal Devolution.” Keyes, Langley C., et. al. 1996. Housing Policy Debate 7 (2): pp 201-229.

“Community Development Intermediary Systems in the United States: Origins, Evolution, and Functions.” Liou, Y. Thomas and Robert C. Stroh. 1998. Housing Policy Debate 9 (3): pp 577-594.

Must Read“Flirting with the Enemy: Challenges Faced by NGOs in Development and Empowerment.” Miraftab, Faranak. 1997. Habitat International 21 (4): pp 361-375. (Abstract)

Must ReadCooperative Autonomy: The Dialectic of State-NGOs Relationship in Developing Countries. Sanyal, Bishwapriya. 1994. Geneva: International Institute for Labour Studies. (Table of Contents)

“On the Origins and Reasons Behind NonProfit Involvement and Non-involvement in Low Income Housing in Urban India.” Sen, Siddhartha. 1998. Cities 15 (4): pp 257-268.

Must ReadMastering the Machine: Poverty, Aid and Technology. Smillie, Ian. 1991. Boulder, Colorado: Westview Press, 1991. (Table of Contents)

“Understanding Housing CBOs: Comparative Case Studies from Zimbabwe.” Vakil, Anna C. 1996. Third World Planning Review 18 (3): pp 325-348.

Leases, Land, and Local Leaders. Yap, Kioe-Sheng. 1982. Amsterdam: The Institute for Geographical Studies and Urban and Regional Planning of the Free University of Amsterdam.

“Development Alternatives: The Challenge for NGOs.” Special Issue (supplement) World Development. The World Bank, 1987.

Capacity Building, Training

The concept of capacity building has grown in significance because of the need for replicability. Capacity building focuses on two major concerns, financial and technical or managerial. But it is unclear whether such capacity is a prerequisite or can be gained during the life of projects. Nor is it clear what role external agencies have in capacity building. While the significance of training programs is recognized, the other traditional mechanism of capacity building, the pilot projects are currently out of favor.

“Coping Strategies for Infrastructure: How Turkey’s Spontaneous Settlements Operate in the Absence of Formal Rules.” Baharoglu, Deniz and Josef Leitmann. 1998. Habitat International 22 (2): pp 115-135.

“The People’s Dialogue on Land and Shelter: Community Driven Networking in South Africa’s Informal Settlements.” Bolnick, Joel. 1993. Environment and Urbanization 5 (1): pp 91-110.

Working with Government: the Story of OPP’s Collaboration with State Agencies for Replicating its Low-cost Sanitation Programme. Hasan, Arif. 1997. Karachi: City Press.

Private Sector Participation in the Water Supply and Wastewater Sector: Lessons from Six Developing Countries. Rivera, Daniel. 1996. Washington DC: The World Bank.

“Tools for Building Community: An Examination of 13 Hypotheses.” Turner, John F. C. 1996. Habitat International 20 (3): 339-347.

Must ReadCapacity Building for Urban Management in the 1990s. World Bank. 1991. Urban Management Program. Washington DC: The World Bank. (Table of Contents)

Preparatory Training Workshop for the Aleppo Action Area Two. Goethert, Reinhard, for the City of Aleppo and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusdammenarbeit (GTZ). April 1999. Summary booklet of the exercises of an interactive training workshop.

Property Rights

Urban upgrading typically involves informal settlements where residents lack formal title. A nuanced property rights approach recognizes that traditional formal or legal title is not the only option available to policy makers. Apart from the possibility of acknowledging existing informal or customary titles, there are a number of options within the formal title. There is the choice between individual and cooperative titles and the choice between freehold and leasehold titles. Even within leases, there is the choice of the appropriate length, in terms of years, of the lease.

There is also recognition that apart from formal property rights in land, there are other property rights, formal and informal, that can be leveraged by residents as collateral for home improvement loans.

In summary, there is little research that conclusively demonstrates under what conditions, what combination or bundle of property rights works best in facilitating urban upgrading.

Must Read“Concepts of Urban Land Tenure.” Doebele, William A. 1983. In Urban Land Policy: Issues and Opportunities. Edited by Harold B. Dunkerley, pp 63-107. New York: Oxford University Press.

“The Growth of the Informal Sector and Regularization of Spontaneous Development: Lessons From the Caribbean for Planning Law Reform.” Glenn, Jane Mathews and Jeanne M. Wolfe. 1996. Third World Planning Review 18 (1): pp 59-77.

Formal and Informal Markets: Convergence of Rules, Institutions, and Settlements. Pamuk, A. 1996. Paper for the seminar on Informal Land and Housing Markets, Lincoln Institute of Land Policy and Department of Urban Studies and Planning, MIT.

Urban Land Tenure and Property Rights in Developing Countries: A Review. Payne, G. 1997. London: Intermediate Technology Publications.

Must Read“Instruments for Land Policy: A Classification.” Pearce, B. J. 1980. Urban Law and Policy 3 (2): pp 115-155.

“Examining Property Rights and Investment in Informal Settlements: The Case of Jordan.” Razzaz, O. 1993. Land Economics 69 (4): pp 341-355.

“Contestation and Mutual Adjustment: The Process of Controlling Land in Yajouz, Jordan.” Razzaz, O. 1994. Law and Society Review 28 (1): pp 7-39.

Urban Legislation and Informal Land Markets - The Perverse Link. Rolnick, R. 1996. Paper for the seminar on Informal Land and Housing Markets. Cambridge, MA: Lincoln Institute of Land Policy and Department of Urban Studies and Planning, MIT.

The Squatter Property Market in Hong Kong: Informal Regulation and the State. Smart, A. 1983. Working Paper, University of Hong Kong. Hong Kong: University of Hong Kong.

Must Read“Cooperative Land Banks for Low-Income Housing.” Turnbull, S. 1983. In Land for Housing the Poor. Edited by Shlomo Angel et al. Singapore: Select Books.

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