Charles Linn
School of Architecture & Design

Policy expert to lecture on 'Housing after the Crisis'

Fri, 11/02/2012

Alex Schwartz

LAWRENCE — The 2007 burst of the housing bubble triggered the worst financial crisis since the 1930s, resulting in billion dollar losses in home value and record numbers of foreclosures. Alex Schwartz, professor of urban policy at The New School, New York City, has devoted research to what has happened since.

On Thursday, Nov. 8, he will deliver his analysis, "Housing After the Crisis: Are Things Getting Better?" in a presentation sponsored in part by the University of Kansas Department of Urban Planning. The lecture will take place at 7 p.m. at the Crystal Ballroom of the Eldridge Hotel, 700 Massachusetts St.

Schwartz is the author of "Housing Policy in the United States: An Introduction," published by Routledge in 2010. He has written numerous journal articles on housing and also is managing editor of the international journal Housing Studies.

"Schwartz's book on public housing policy is considered required reading for anyone who is serious about the subject," said Kirk McClure, professor of urban planning at KU.

"Typical indicators of economic activity such as housing starts and house prices are angling upwards, and foreclosure rates are trending downward," said Schwartz. "There is not enough momentum to say these are going to continue to improve, but things are looking brighter than they have."

Reflecting on the election that will take place two days before his talk, Schwartz said, "Frankly I am not sure that who is elected president is going to make much of a difference right away. If the Senate continues to be gridlocked, the fiscal cliff, and sequestration, it's not clear anything is going to happen, other than cuts."

Schwartz said that his presentation would also look at the Obama administration's housing policies, including the shortcomings of its foreclosure prevention strategy, and its inability to address the nation's housing problems after the Republicans gained control of Congress in 2010.

Other lecture sponsors include the Mid-America Regional Council, HNTB and local chapters of the American Planning Association. Schwartz will give a second presentation at MARC's headquarters in Kansas City, Mo., on Friday, Nov. 9.

The Department of Urban Planning is part of the School of Architecture, Design and Planning.

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