Housing: Policy, Welfare and Markets PUBPOL4030

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Social and Political Sciences
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2 (Alternate Years)
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

Among public policy domains, housing occupies a crucial nexus between people's welfare, place making and economic policy, but its significance to social and economic wellbeing is often underplayed.


This course charts the development of UK housing systems in their international context through the interplay of policy and markets, and explores contemporary debates around social needs, homelessness, public spending, consumption inequalities, and governance.


One hour weekly lecture

One hour weekly tutorial

Requirements of Entry

Mandatory Entry Requirements

Entry to Honours Social & Public Policy normally requires a grade point average of 12 (grade C3) over Social & Public Policy 2A and 2B (formerly Public Policy 2A and 2B) as a first attempt.

Excluded Courses





A written assignment of 2000 words based on the coursework, weighted at 40%

A two hour exam, weighted at 60%. The exam is 'seen' - students get advance sight of the exam questions.

Main Assessment In: December and April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? No


Course Aims

The course aims to provide students with an understanding of the evolution of the housing system in the UK, and how it compares with other European countries. It will explore the role of public policy in shaping the current system, alongside other factors. The course will also explore a range of contemporary policy issues and examine competing policy prescriptions.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

The programme provides opportunities for students to develop and to demonstrate knowledge and awareness, skills and other attributes in the following areas.


Knowledge and Understanding:

By the end of this course, students should be able to demonstrate a critical awareness of:

1. trends in the housing system in the UK, understood in relation to other developed countries;

2. the main drivers of change, both policy and non-policy related and covering both consumer or demand perspectives and producer or supply perspectives;

3. the development of housing policy over time and the factors that have influenced this;

4. current issues facing housing policy and housing practitioners, and alternative responses to these.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.