Cfp RC21 Global Corporate Landlords and Tenant Struggles in the Post-pandemic City

Panel 13. Athens, 24-26 Aug. 2022. Apply by 31 Jan. 2022

Description: New forms of housing financialization emerged in the wake of the 2008 global financial crisis. Housing evictions and non-performing loans, as well as a global situation of excess liquidity, enabled new flows of financial capital to be redirected towards residential real estate. In the process, global investment funds, such as the notorious Blackstone, have acquired large international portfolios of residential property. As global corporate landlords (GCLs), they have pursued aggressive property management strategies in order to gain higher returns on their investments. As a result, tenants in their properties have often seen their contracts terminated or faced abrupt rent increases. At the same time, we observe growing resistance to the actions of GCLs across different types of cities worldwide, especially subject to different impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic.

In this panel we welcome contributions that provide new theoretical approaches and empirical analyses that help to understand the above processes and their economic, social, political, and urban impacts by addressing questions such as the following: How do GCLs alter housing regimes? How are the links between capital markets and residential housing reshaped due to the action of GCLs? What relations between GCLs and other financial institutions (banks, pension funds, ‘bad banks’, central banks, etc.) are being fostered? How is the ‘buy it, fix it, sell it’ business strategy evolving? How do state policies encourage this type of transnational real estate investment? To what extent has the Covid-19 pandemic interfered in this type of housing financialization? What are the socio-spatial effects of this asset restructuring? What types of tenant’s resistances and strategies are GCLs facing? How effective are these housing struggles against GCLs?

Conveners: Javier Gil, Lorenzo Vidal, Miguel A. Martínez | Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden

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