Diversity or Displacement? Housing capital and the right to place


  • Richard Mohr Social Research Policy & Planning


Housing, gentrification, debt, capital, social rights, Vivienda, gentrificación, deuda, derechos sociales


Increasing costs of housing and processes of gentrification are excluding poorer people from convenient areas of cities where they have traditionally lived. This paper responds to the loss of diversity being experienced in part of inner western of Sydney which has been a first home for successive waves of immigrants. It considers claims to various rights and forms of capital as a possible foundation of resistance to gentrification and the commodification of housing, and for their potential to promote egalitarian participation in urban life more generally. It asks whether there is any sense in which residents of a neighbourhood can assert a right to place. In conclusion, the interaction between rights and forms of capital is seen to be mediated by exchange and contestation. These concepts will be used to examine some of the social, political and economic means for promoting claims to cultural rights and the primacy of housing’'s use value.

Los costes crecientes de la vivienda y los procesos de gentrificación están excluyendo a personas más pobres de vecindarios cómodos donde siempre habían residido. Este artículo responde a la pérdida de la diversidad que se ha experimentado en la parte occidental interior de Sydney, que ha sido una primera residencia para varias generaciones de inmigrantes. Se toman en consideración reclamaciones de derechos y formas de capital como posible base de la resistencia a la gentrificación y la mercantilización de la vivienda, y para su potencial para promover una participación generalizada más igualitaria; además, plantea si hay algún sentido en las proclamaciones de un derecho territorial. La conclusión es que la interacción entre derechos y formas de capital está mediatizada por el intercambio y la contestación. Estos conceptos se utilizarán para examinar algunas de las formas sociales, políticas y económicas para promover reclamaciones de derechos culturales y la primacía del valor de uso de la vivienda.

Available from: https://doi.org/10.35295/osls.iisl/0000-0000-0000-1099

Author Biography

Richard Mohr, Social Research Policy & Planning

Richard Mohr incorporated Social Research Policy & Planning in 1991. He has since been Research Director of the Centre for Court Policy and Planning and Director of the Legal Intersections Research Centre at the University of Wollongong. Until 2011 he was managing editor of the international journal Law Text Culture. He is a visiting professorial fellow with the Legal Intersections Research Centre at the University of Wollongong, and continues to work closely with the Institute for Judicial Research in Bologna (IRSIG-CNR), having published a book and several articles with Francesco Contini. His primary affiliation is now with Social Research Policy & Planning.


How to Cite

Mohr, R. (2020) “Diversity or Displacement? Housing capital and the right to place”, Oñati Socio-Legal Series, 10(1), pp. 147–168. Available at: https://opo.iisj.net/index.php/osls/article/view/1001 (Accessed: 2 July 2022).