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Cohousing and sustainable urban development

Research project

Project's title: Cohousing and sustainable urban development

Project's duration: 2015-2017

Contact person (Lund University):
Henrik Gutzon Larsen

Main researchers:
Cathrin Wasshede, University of Gothenburg
Claes Caldenby, Chalmers University of Technology
Henrik Gutzon Larsen, Lund University
Håkan Thörn, University of Gothenburg (project leader)

Affiliated researchers:
David Scheller, FH Potsdam
Pernilla Hagbert, KTH Royal Institute of Technology
Siri Kjellberg, Lund University

Overview

The aim of the project is to analyse what learning experiences different forms of co-housing provide for social and ecological sustainability in the context of housing policy. This will be done through case studies of co-housing in Denmark, Germany, Spain and Sweden. A part of the aim is to examine if and to what extent social and ecological sustainability may contradict and/or support each other in the practices of co-housing. Contemporary economic changes and ecological challenges provide new contexts and motives for co-housing. Climate change and other ecological concerns have increased the interest in developing modes of living that reduce the ecological footprints of everyday life. Rising estate values in cities and de-regulations of housing markets have increased dwelling costs. Moreover, the economic crisis in Europe has made it more difficult for low-income groups to afford good housing. Against this background, demands have been made for the development of forms of dwelling both socially and ecologically sustainable. Socially, co-housing has often been organized with the aim to create a sense of community (involving democratic decision-making) and gender equality by decreasing the burden of household work. Further, co-housing has in many cases meant a relatively low dwelling cost for the individual and in some cases also been organized in an economically sustainable, non-profit co-operative form.

The Department of Human Geography
and the Human Ecology Division

Address: Sölvegatan 10,
223 62 Lund
Phone: 046-222 17 59

Faculty of Social Sciences