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Today, many who are involved in the governance of urban development and housing plea for area-based strategies to tackle urban social problems. Various arguments may be given to legitimise that kind of policy intervention. In this paper the assumptions behind the policy application are evaluated. Recurrent discourses and ideas regarding the backgrounds of neighbourhood effects receive extra attention. That discussion will be followed by a critical evaluation of the views that are expressed, both in the literature and through interviews with key actors. Finally, the question will be raised whether it is a good idea to continue with area-based policies or whether it might be wiser to replace the area-based policies by domain or sector policies in order to achieve a more direct approach towards the problems that should be tackled.
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Keywords: Area-based policy; Europe; comparative analysis; mix; neighbourhoods; segregation

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Institute for Housing and Urban Research, Uppsala University, Box 785, SE-801 29 Gävle, Sweden., Email: [email protected] 2: Amsterdam Institute for Metropolitan and International Development Studies (AMIDSt), Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences, University of Amsterdam, NL-1018 VZ Amsterdam, The Netherlands., Email: [email protected]

Publication date: 2005-09-01

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