HACT and TSRC explore how social housing providers can achieve community empowerment


HACT and TSRC have released a think piece on the role of social housing providers in the context of 'Localism' and the 'Big Society'.

‘Community Investment and Community Empowerment’ by Professor David Mullins is launched today at a conference on Housing and Community Empowerment, due to be attended by about 150 people from across the housing and community sector and government.

The report includes a practical tool to help housing associations understand their own position. It was commissioned by HACT to provide a theoretical and conceptual framework that they could use to evaluate their community empowerment work in the current policy context.

The report reviews the history and rationale for community investment. It explores the different approaches taken by housing associations and considers whether this leads to community empowerment. It concludes that local relationship and partnership approaches are more likely to achieve this outcome than contract based or corporate strategy driven approaches.

The report is a consultation draft to which comments are invited up to August 31st. David Mullins leads the Third Sector Research Centre’s housing research programme. He has been involved in research and practice on social housing organisations for many years, including previous collaborations with HACT, collaborative projects with Dutch housing associations, and work with the National Housing Federation on their 2011 Audit.

Heather Petch, director of HACT, said ‘I hope that housing organisations will enjoy sharing David’s journey and will find the product of that journey (the Theoretical Framework and Key Questions) a useful tool in planning their own organisation’s engagement with this agenda. I am delighted that people will have the opportunity to feed in directly to this think piece prior to its final publication by HACT and TSRC in the Autumn.’ Please send comments to David Mullins: d.w.mullins@bham.ac.uk by August 31st