PLAN3002W Int. Housing Policy & Planning

Academic Year 2022/2023

Introduction of Module
Housing has multiple maenings. It provides shelter for individuals and families and thus impacts on their well-being. As a commodity and increasingly an asset, it is also an important site of capital accumulation and a source of socio-spatial inequalities. Therefore, there is considerable pressure for government authorities to ensure access to adequate, affordable housing.
This module will provide students with a critical introduction to housing and housing policies. It will situate the housing question within the broader parameters of political economy, political sociology and urban governance, and introduce a comparative approach to studying housing systems and housing policies in selected places. It will discuss some of the most pressing housing-related issues – affordability, informality, socio-spatial differentiation, gentrification, financialization, homelessness, displacements, and platformisation. Through debates surrounding them, the module aims to unravel the complexities of housing problems and question the complicity of some policies and planning practices in these problems. Complemented by normative theories of social justice, the module invites critical reflection on how housing policies and planning interventions can be redesigned for just housing futures.

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

On completing this module, students will be able to:
- understand different ways to conceptualise housing and the implications for policies and planning;
- distinguish and evaluate different approaches to housing policies;
- recognise how housing issues are shaped by, and shape, broader processes and dynamics;
- compare housing systems and diverse approaches to housing policies, and explain linkages, parallels, and divergences;
- demonstrate a critical understanding of the debates surrounding selected housing-related issues;
- use concepts, theories and methods introduced in class to evaluate and develop housing proposals, plans, and policies;
- develop a normative perspective on housing and identify pathways to just housing futures.

Indicative Module Content:

(1) The module will enable students to understand how housing issues are shaped by wider processes and dynamics in society and intersect with other socio-ecological challenges. This is critical to understanding the complexities of planning. (2) It will introduce the conceptual and methodological tools to understand, evaluate and compare housing systems and housing policies. These tools can be transferred to develop a critical understanding of policies and challenges in other domains. (3) It will introduce a wide range of housing-related issues from diverse theoretical perspectives and through examples from Europe, North America, Asia, Africa, and Latin America. This can broaden students’ theoretical and geographical perspectives, and prepare them for further studies in or beyond planning. (4) A key component of this course is collaborative learning. Students can acquire important skills to work independently and collaboratively. (5) With an emphasis on social justice, the module will also help students develop an ethical approach to planning and housing, which they can take into their professional careers and contribute to progressive changes in society.

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours


Autonomous Student Learning




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
Module Tasks
- reading and critiquing academic and non-academic literature;
- working in a group and presenting findings on assigned topics in both oral and written forms;
- attending lectures and engaging in in-class discussions and other activities;
- writing an essay on assigned topics.
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations
Learning Exclusions:

This module is delivered overseas and is not available to students based at the UCD Belfield or UCD Blackrock campuses.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
Not applicable to this module.
Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade
Assignment: Module Assessment Approach
Assessment consists of both in-class assignments (a 30-min group presentation and a 2500-word report-50%) and end-of-semester assignment 2000-word individual essay 50%.
Throughout the Trimester n/a Graded No


Carry forward of passed components
Remediation Type Remediation Timing
In-Module Resit Prior to relevant Programme Exam Board
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment
• Group/class feedback, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Ongoing feedback will be provided to students through the semester on both group and individual assignments.

Name Role
Dr Yunpeng Zhang Lecturer / Co-Lecturer