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affordable housing, the essential economy, and world building

The peoples of Canada have been confronted with a long-term and unresolved housing crisis, and North Hastings, Ontario, faces an intensified housing crisis in the form of increasing homelessness, precarious housing, so-called couch-surfing, and dramatic house price inflation. Most proposed solutions to this crisis treat the problems of a lack of affordable housing as a mere ‘market failure’ to produce enough housing. Rarely addressed is the broad perspective in which we might ask why high-income countries like Canada continue to have increasing housing crises over the last forty years? In this session we will explore an ecological perspective of housing as part of a provisioning system which connects homes to land use, material supply chains, governance and funding institutions, and long-term well-being. We will reframe housing as an essential service within our economy and establish a firm ground for why markets should not be responsible for organizing all the housing within our societies, and what a different approach to housing as essential might look like in practical terms, from forestry to financing.



Shaun Sellers is a PhD candidate in the Leadership for the Ecozoic program (L4E) at McGill University, She has a MSc in Ecological Economics from the University of Leeds, and a BA (Hons) in Business Management from Antioch University.  Her doctoral research is in social ecological trade theory. She likes books, her dog, and being in the woods.


watch the video

an open letter to Airbnb: click here

an episode of Patriot Act which discusses rent, evictions, and the purchase of residential housing by investment firms: click here

an open letter to government in the Hastings area about affordable housing: click here

links to the Hastings County housing and homelessness plans: click here

report on affordable housing for Ontario: click here

homeless hub website: click here

a UK report on land trusts and real estate: click here

some news articles that will make you angry:

click here

click here

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