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GENTRIFICATION - THE PROSPECT FOR EUROPEAN CITIES?

Abstract
By : Lena Magnusson

 
Urbanization usually involves gentrification. Gentrification implies revitalization whereby housing becomes more upmarket. This aim of this study is to ascertain whether conversion of tenure from rent to cooperative ownership might initiate a gentrification process. The focus is on the socio-economic composition of individuals living in the converted residential properties. The degree of gentrification is determined by the extent to which the original tenants are replaced by individuals with more resources. The analysis is limited to the distinct of Östermalm in Stockholm city. The quantitative analysis is based on a longitudinal database, Geosweden, covering the total Swedish population in 1990-2000. Östermalm is an inner city district with 60,000 inhabitants and a higher share of converted dwellings than any other district in Stockholm. About 2,300 dwellings were converted between 1991 and 1996. Limited indications of social change can be identified during the conversion. The conversion was completed in 1995. All indicators of gentrification point to social change through residential mobility in 1995-2000. Individuals who moved into the converted properties had more disposable income than those who moved out or stayed in 1995-2000. They also had higher levels of education. The results also point to families with children as a new group of gentrifiers.
Keywords : Gentrification, Tenure Conversion, Sweden, Socio-Economic Change.

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