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close this bookGSS in Action: Global Strategy for Shelter to the Year 2000 (HABITAT, 1992, 105 p.)
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentForeword
View the documentStrategic planning for better shelter
Open this folder and view contentsSuccess stories in shelter
View the documentHow to develop a national shelter strategy
View the documentAction at the national level
View the documentReferences

How to develop a national shelter strategy

Virtually all countries already have national housing policies - adequate or inadequate. A national shelter strategy, formulated along the lines of the Global Strategy for Shelter recommendations, would use their enabling principle to facilitate the participation of the three main actors in shelter delivery - governments (both national and local), the private sector (formal and informal, as well as NGOs and CBOs), and the community - working together in three main areas of action:

Political and participatory aspects

Reorganization of the shelter sector

Economic and financial aspects

Mobilization and allocation of resources

Physical-spatial aspects

Shelter production and improvement

Rationally, changes in policies and strategies should start with well-identified needs. Shelter strategies should aim at improving the performance of the shelter-delivery system, in order to attain adequate shelter for all by the year 2000.

This need can only be thoroughly assessed by analysing the performance of the shelter sector and understanding its behaviour under current policies and strategies. If its performance can be improved, strategy alternatives towards this aim should be considered. The main stages of setting up a national shelter strategy are:

- Evaluation of past and present policy performance of the shelter sector;

- Research of new alternatives to meet shelter needs, including the policy lessons learnt from many countries and elaborated in the GSS;

- Information exchange on new approaches, to create a more favourable environment for policy change;

- Policy formulation of new, enabling strategies;

- Training, at several levels, on new strategies and on ways and means to implement them;

- Strategic implementation of the policies;

- Evaluation of the actions and their results.

These stages form the shelter development cycle. The feed-back, given by the evaluation, sets the course for further development of the strategies.

The knowledge of the Global Strategy for Shelter to the Year 2000, the familiarization with successful experiences from other countries - such as the ones described in this document - and the assessment of the performance of the national shelter sector could be a starting point of this shelter development cycle, which should over time improve the shelter-delivery system in every country.