In the past decades the role of the State has undergone major alterations regarding supply of goods and services in general, particularly housing supply. There is a clear trend towards less direct intervention of the public agents in the supply process, encouraging participation of non-public agents, such as the private sector, NGO’s (non-governmental organizations, with a volunteer character), and communities that receive goods and services - in this case, housing. This is certainly a global trend encompassing both industrially advanced and developing countries.
The mechanism of supplying housing or other goods and services consists of several elements, such as planning, financing, management, production, monitoring and supervision. The general supply pattern is defined by how these elements are distributed among public and non-public agents. The following questions are essential in this context: how are these elements distributed? What is the appropriate relation for a certain context? This book approaches these questions by means of a comparative analyses of different modes of housing provision emphasizing the relations between public and non-public agents. To this end it uses case studies in Sao Paulo, Brazil where the fieldwork for the research was conducted. Nevertheless, the findings of the book have much wider implications for housing policy formulation and market development in developing countries as a whole.