Housing Policy Debate Call for Papers

U.S. Housing Policy: The Future of What Works

Housing Policy Debate

In many ways U.S. housing policy is entering unchartered waters. The future of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac remains unresolved, there are increasingly concerns about affordability in rental markets across the country, and the new administration is signaling that it may undertake fundamental changes in how it approaches a host of housing-related topics, including fair housing and funding for community development. Amidst these challenges and uncertainties, researchers have developed a better understanding than ever before of the behavioral basis of housing markets and housing choices research that can provide a powerful foundation for the next generation of federal housing policy. The confluence of these two developments—policy uncertainty coupled with strong empirical research—provides a unique opportunity to revisit what works and what does not, and to use that information to inform future policies.

Toward this end, the University of Pennsylvania will be hosting a one-day housing policy conference in Philadelphia in the fall of 2017 exploring the question of what works, what can be made to work better, and how what works should shape the next generation of national housing policy. We seek keynote papers that answer these questions with respect to: (i) affordable rental housing, including subsidized housing; (ii) fair housing; (iii) homeownership policy and the GSEs; and (iv) neighborhood (re) development policy.

Submission information

If you are interested in writing a paper and attending the conference as a keynote presenter, please submit an advanced abstract of your paper to Professor Vincent Reina by May 15, 2017. Paper proposals should be 2-3 pages long, focused on one of the above policy areas, and include mention of the following topics: (i) current trends and policy challenges; (ii) a summary of recent and relevant research results; and (iii) the key findings produced by the paper and (iv) the implications for future policy. The conference committee will select a maximum of three paper proposals in each area for additional development. Selected authors will be provided with a stipend of up to $1,500 each to write the full paper and cover conference travel costs. The articles will be subject to the standard peer-review process for publication in Housing Policy Debate. The committee will then select academics and practioners to write a series of responses that will be published in conjunction with the articles.

This effort is being financially supported by the University of Pennsylvania’s Fels Institute of Government, the Penn Institute for Urban Research (PIUR), Housing Policy Debate and by PennDesign and the Department of City and Regional Planning. In addition to Professor Reina, the conference coordinating committee consists of Professors John Landis of the Department of City and Regional Planning, Susan Wachter of the Wharton School of Business, Dennis Culhane of the School of Social Policy and Practice, Dirk Krueger of Economics, and John Kromer of the Urban Studies Program.

Authors of the selected abstracts will be notified on May 22th and expected to submit their completed papers by August 1st. We expect to hold the proposed conference in early October 2017. Each author will be given 30 minutes to present the highlights of their paper, followed by commentaries by selected conference participants.

Editorial information