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Degrees of destitution: A typology of homelessness in developing countries

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Suzanne Speak



There is an ongoing attempt to develop a globally acceptable definition of homelessness. Whether such a definition is broad and inclusive of squatters, and those living in particularly poor quality housing, or narrowly focused on street homelessness, it is likely to include a large population. Therefore, we are left with a need to develop criteria for identifying, allocating and prioritising appropriate support. Drawing on a study of homelessness in nine developing countries, this paper presents a new categorisation or typology of homelessness, based on choice and opportunity. It highlights the way in which homeless people, living in identical shelter situations, and for ostensibly similar reasons, might require different responses to support them out of homelessness. This paper does not seek to debate the definition of homelessness but to stimulate discussion on finding a way to identify and prioritise the needs of those included within any given-definition. © 2004 Taylor and Francis Ltd.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Speak S

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Housing Studies

Year: 2004

Volume: 19

Issue: 3

Pages: 465-482

Print publication date: 01/05/2004

ISSN (print): 0267-3037

ISSN (electronic): 1466-1810

Publisher: Routledge


DOI: 10.1080/0267303042000204331


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