The quest for a social mix: The Copenhagen experience

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    Several national and local European governments have made a clear commitment to supporting the development of mixed communities. Such advocacy has been made though planning, housing, and regeneration policies and has involved collaboration with a number of public and private agencies.
    Whilst at the political level, ideas of social mix have been seen as a solution to processes of income segregation and urban decay, at the academic level they have raised several epistemological concerns related to its goals, ideological assumptions, and social and urban effects.
    The task of this paper is twofold. In the first instance to discuss perspectives regarding the concept of social mix and mixed communities and the main assumptions and objectives that have come to justify the launch of these ideas in Copenhagen. The second is to analyse how these strategies have been implemented at the local level. What problems are they designed to address? What are the theoretical assumptions behind them? How are these strategies perceived by the population and public officials? What crucial elements of urban governance have been used in the construction of mixed communities?
    The methodology used in this research involves literature reviews and in-depth interviews with officials and academics who have been involved in policy-making, implementation, or evaluation of housing policies in Copenhagen.
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication date2016
    Publication statusPublished - 2016
    Event12th Symposium of the International Urban Planning and Environment Association: CITIES FOR US: engaging communities and citizens for sustainable development - Lisboa, Portugal
    Duration: 31 May 20163 Jun 2016


    Conference12th Symposium of the International Urban Planning and Environment Association
    Internet address


    • Social mix
    • governance
    • housing policies
    • urban policies
    • mixed communitie


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