LANDUnderstanding the 'Urban Land market' is the fundament for my understanding of implementation. It is the most systemic of the technical angles I work on, and its principles are deeply intertwined with my advisory. They are indeed, the principles of the democratisation process (see Breimer 2006) reflected in reality on the ground. Such as when it comes to the right of all to access a market, and issues of inequality.
My knowledge and understanding of access to urban land, formal or informal, and instruments to try and ensure its affordability for the poor, are intertwined with my work on informal and incremental housing (See Breimer 2011, Breimer and Napier 2013).
My most profound inspirations for the land market and jurisdiction come from Latin America. Indeed I feel that this body of knowledge and understanding is of great importance for any work on urban land - and the direction of resilience - across the globe. It gives exposure to the workings of the free market, and a spectrum of possibilities in the law, and great inventiveness in instruments to guide the market (see some of those under the gallery).
New insights on intergenerational wealth, land, property, come from the work of the French Economist, Thomas Piketty.
As a land team at the Institute for Housing and Urban Development Studies (IHS) of Erasmus University, Rotterdam, we built a body of knowledge and teaching/training under the guidance of a pedagogue and senior on land management and policy from Mexico. This body of knowledge centered on Land Markets, Land Law, Land negotiations and Land Based Finance / Land Value Capture instruments. Our land team was strongly influenced by Latin American thinking on land markets and legislation via Lincoln Institute of Land Policy (LILP). We taught professionals from across Africa, Asia and Latin America (an occasionally Europe), and supervised their research, in-country fieldwork and thesis writing individually. We developed and rolled out trainings for professionals across the world.
The world is rapidly urbanizing. Not only Latin America and Asia, Africa too, will never be the same. In my country at least, donor funding is dominated by attention for rural land. In my experience, this is also a generational issue, with decision-makers in positions of influence, all being from a generation that was formed when the world seemed mostly rural (this is just my grain of salt). Undoubtly, this condition will flip to attention for urban land, urban law, urban planning, and urban instruments at some point. I would love to be amongst the frontrunners in that, and am more than open for any exploration, also informally, on what this means.
(peri)URBAN LANDI am well versed with (all urban) theory and guiding principles for:
- Land markets (especially Central/Latin America), formal, informal
- The basics of land transactions, negotiations
- The basics of serviced land, especially water (see under 'water')
- Land Policy, principles in the cross-over with democratisation, justice, equality
- Land Instruments, in particular Land Based Finance, Land Value Capture
- The basics of Land Property Legislation/Jurisdiction
- Land Governance, into metropolitan areas/regions
- The cross-over between land and planning, such as in the Master plan, zoning regulations
- The cross-over between land and housing, such as in incremental housing
- The basics of Cadastre, Geo-Spatial Imagery (both ITC certified), GIS (University Utrecht Certified)
I would be especially interested in collaborating with senior consultants in the field on consultancy assignments directly with local urban, metropolitan, regional or central governments and/or large implementing entities (development banks etc.).
Also, in applied research (e.g. the impact of an instrument etc.)
In 2015, I lead an interaction on urban sprawl at the Joint Research Centre (JRC) of the European Commision (EC) in Ispra, Milan, Italy,
and introduced the thinkpiece EC JRC link I presented earlier at a conference in the run-up to Habitat III, in Cairo Cairo University Architecture Repository link.
The presentation reflects my interest in exploratory, applied research - and geo-spatial imagery.
There is a cross-link with water here - so close to the city, so far from the pipes.
ARCHITECTURE and (core) HOUSING, sites and services schemesI have a special love for architecture, as I grew up in a Turkish courtyard house and continue to be full of wonder about its qualities. My best friends' sister, was an architect, and I loved watching her room - which had nothing else in it than an enormous drawing table, everything was hand work (I made a gallery post about the atelier, with a photograph from Istanbul Technical University).
I feel architects. I collect architecture books from Brazil, Tel Aviv, Barcelona - for the art of it.
I love to photograph architecture - feel the atmosphere of and in the building (see under gallery).
When it comes to housing for the poor though - a whole new mindset is needed.
I am open to wide explorations, be it with architects, urban planners, local governments, firms even - and I will mostly contribute with critical advisory
The most important lesson, for any start-up with architects, at least from my field/research and advisory experience, is that whilst you set out to target the poor, you end up with a business model for the lower middle class, or even high middle class.
That is the reality-check you face. Because really, the poor are also very versitile and inventive in building their own incremental housing. What difference are you making in their trade-offs?
See for instance my study of the core-housing concept (Breimer 2011).
If none of the above withholds you, I am more than willing and also would truly enjoy the artistic side of this, to provide alongside advisory to your core team of architects. Even for a longer period of time, at certain relevant moments. I could also consult on doing market research and on the ground action research to ensure clarity on the needs, trade-offs, alternatives of the target group.
Feel free to suggest an informal meeting, if you're working on something that might spark.
My advisory experience to start-ups so far:
- Advisory to a start up in Rotterdam on modular housing as a start-up business ENVIU in Rotterdam, in interaction with Architecture for Humanity
- Advisory to a start up with modular housing Butterfly Housing
Here is an old photograph of core housing in South Africa, the same country where I did my fieldwork.
You can download my academic work on it freely,
'Open-building as an approach for more effective core-housing?' from the Erasmus University Repository link.