Developing a global framework for conceptualising and measuring homelessness

Volker Busch-Geertsema, Dennis Culhane, Suzanne Fitzpatrick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Homelessness has long been recognised as a global phenomenon, affecting poorer populations in both the developed and developing worlds. However, acute housing need has often struggled to achieve the same level of priority at an international level as the satisfaction of other basic needs, such as for food, water, healthcare and education. In this paper we present a broad-based Global Homelessness Framework as a means of providing a ‘frame of reference’ for cross-national engagement in this field, but recommend that concerted international action focuses on a relatively narrow definition of homelessness encompassing people without any form of accommodation (the ‘unsheltered’ group who are sleeping rough or in places not intended for human habitation) and those living in temporary or crisis accommodation specifically provided for homeless people. We demonstrate that current data is insufficient to generate a comprehensive and defensible worldwide ‘count’ of homeless people, and set out proposals to facilitate moves towards more reliable homelessness estimates at local, national and global levels. At the same time, however, we argue that at least some meaningful trend data is already available for large parts of the Global North, and for some countries and cities in the Global South, so that it would be both feasible and valuable to systematically track these ‘directions of travel’ over time.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)124–132
Number of pages9
JournalHabitat International
Volume55
Early online date3 Apr 2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2016

Fingerprint

homelessness
accommodation
basic need
travel
housing
food
water
trend
education
Group

Cite this

Busch-Geertsema, Volker ; Culhane, Dennis ; Fitzpatrick, Suzanne. / Developing a global framework for conceptualising and measuring homelessness. In: Habitat International. 2016 ; Vol. 55. pp. 124–132.
@article{49e115edb443441083b48c11788c3416,
title = "Developing a global framework for conceptualising and measuring homelessness",
abstract = "Homelessness has long been recognised as a global phenomenon, affecting poorer populations in both the developed and developing worlds. However, acute housing need has often struggled to achieve the same level of priority at an international level as the satisfaction of other basic needs, such as for food, water, healthcare and education. In this paper we present a broad-based Global Homelessness Framework as a means of providing a ‘frame of reference’ for cross-national engagement in this field, but recommend that concerted international action focuses on a relatively narrow definition of homelessness encompassing people without any form of accommodation (the ‘unsheltered’ group who are sleeping rough or in places not intended for human habitation) and those living in temporary or crisis accommodation specifically provided for homeless people. We demonstrate that current data is insufficient to generate a comprehensive and defensible worldwide ‘count’ of homeless people, and set out proposals to facilitate moves towards more reliable homelessness estimates at local, national and global levels. At the same time, however, we argue that at least some meaningful trend data is already available for large parts of the Global North, and for some countries and cities in the Global South, so that it would be both feasible and valuable to systematically track these ‘directions of travel’ over time.",
author = "Volker Busch-Geertsema and Dennis Culhane and Suzanne Fitzpatrick",
year = "2016",
month = "7",
doi = "10.1016/j.habitatint.2016.03.004",
language = "English",
volume = "55",
pages = "124–132",
journal = "Habitat International",
issn = "0197-3975",
publisher = "Elsevier Limited",

}

Developing a global framework for conceptualising and measuring homelessness. / Busch-Geertsema, Volker; Culhane, Dennis; Fitzpatrick, Suzanne.

In: Habitat International, Vol. 55, 07.2016, p. 124–132.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Developing a global framework for conceptualising and measuring homelessness

AU - Busch-Geertsema, Volker

AU - Culhane, Dennis

AU - Fitzpatrick, Suzanne

PY - 2016/7

Y1 - 2016/7

N2 - Homelessness has long been recognised as a global phenomenon, affecting poorer populations in both the developed and developing worlds. However, acute housing need has often struggled to achieve the same level of priority at an international level as the satisfaction of other basic needs, such as for food, water, healthcare and education. In this paper we present a broad-based Global Homelessness Framework as a means of providing a ‘frame of reference’ for cross-national engagement in this field, but recommend that concerted international action focuses on a relatively narrow definition of homelessness encompassing people without any form of accommodation (the ‘unsheltered’ group who are sleeping rough or in places not intended for human habitation) and those living in temporary or crisis accommodation specifically provided for homeless people. We demonstrate that current data is insufficient to generate a comprehensive and defensible worldwide ‘count’ of homeless people, and set out proposals to facilitate moves towards more reliable homelessness estimates at local, national and global levels. At the same time, however, we argue that at least some meaningful trend data is already available for large parts of the Global North, and for some countries and cities in the Global South, so that it would be both feasible and valuable to systematically track these ‘directions of travel’ over time.

AB - Homelessness has long been recognised as a global phenomenon, affecting poorer populations in both the developed and developing worlds. However, acute housing need has often struggled to achieve the same level of priority at an international level as the satisfaction of other basic needs, such as for food, water, healthcare and education. In this paper we present a broad-based Global Homelessness Framework as a means of providing a ‘frame of reference’ for cross-national engagement in this field, but recommend that concerted international action focuses on a relatively narrow definition of homelessness encompassing people without any form of accommodation (the ‘unsheltered’ group who are sleeping rough or in places not intended for human habitation) and those living in temporary or crisis accommodation specifically provided for homeless people. We demonstrate that current data is insufficient to generate a comprehensive and defensible worldwide ‘count’ of homeless people, and set out proposals to facilitate moves towards more reliable homelessness estimates at local, national and global levels. At the same time, however, we argue that at least some meaningful trend data is already available for large parts of the Global North, and for some countries and cities in the Global South, so that it would be both feasible and valuable to systematically track these ‘directions of travel’ over time.

U2 - 10.1016/j.habitatint.2016.03.004

DO - 10.1016/j.habitatint.2016.03.004

M3 - Article

VL - 55

SP - 124

EP - 132

JO - Habitat International

JF - Habitat International

SN - 0197-3975

ER -