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Title: Low-income housing, the environment and the state : the case of St. Lucia.
Author: Prudent-Phillip, Marie Patricia.
ISNI:       0000 0001 3502 4852
Awarding Body: Royal Holloway, University of London
Current Institution: Royal Holloway, University of London
Date of Award: 1999
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The convening of the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in June 1992 represented a major milestone in the global debate on environment and development. This thesis, however, is not concerned about the broad views and perspectives advanced by developed and developing countries. Rather, the focus is at a much more micro level. The thesis examines the relationship between the environment and one aspect of development, namely, housing. The discussion centres on environmental conditions in low-income communities in a developing country: St. Lucia. This is really the reality of the debate within the boundaries of Small-Island Developing States (SIOS). As Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, Prime Minister of Malaysia states " ... peasants are likely to be far less concerned about holes in the ozone layer than about holes in their rooft" (in Main, 1994:3). It is within this context that the thesis is set. Brown agenda issues are becoming increasingly more evident in the cities of the developing world. In St. Lucia this is most visible in low-income housing communities. This thesis examines the underlying reasons for the neglect of low-income community environments and assesses whether there is a direct correlation between the level of government intervention in the establishment of these communities and the state of their household and neighbourhood environments. It also provides a comprehensive understanding of the operations of the formal and informal housing sectors in respect of low-income housing. The thesis argues that the State has failed in its attempts to provide lowincome housing and that low-income households have taken the provision of their shelter needs literally into their own hands. However, construction within the informal sector has resulted in serious environmental degradation. While households themselves are making some effort to address their environmental conditions, their actions tend to be reactive and ad-hoc, with little improvements being realized. These households have however acknowledged that they are unable by themselves to ameliorate their environmental conditions to any significant extent. They emphasize that the State must playa facilitating role in the process. This thesis is therefore concerned about the ways in which these stakeholders can work together to ensure the delivery of low-income housing within an environmentally sustainable framework. The argument put forward is that this can be achieved through an aided self-help approach, which will signal a new orientation towards the provision of low-income housing in St. Lucia and implicitly, a new environmental agenda for low-income communities.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Communities; Environmental degradation