The Uneven Impact of Neoliberalism on Housing Opportunities


Neoliberalism has dominated policy discourse and policy formulation for at least two decades and has been particularly influential in reshaping housing systems and housing opportunities. The timing, pace and impact of these policy developments have, however, varied between and within societies. This article explores the experiences of Japan and the UK as a way of illustrating that while there has been a shared discourse of neoliberalism, there have been important contextual differences in relation to the economic cycle, welfare systems and political complexion. These have affected the progress and development of neoliberal policy reforms in housing and in other related spheres and the extent of global financial integration. In both countries, a key social change is the striking reduction in levels of home ownership among younger age groups. The article explores the common and different causes and consequences of these trends and points to the significance of these emerging generational fissions for the neoliberal project.