Housing policy across Europe faces many challenges. In particular, a growing and increasingly diverse demand for decent homes for everyone, especially among more vulnerable groups such as the elderly, those on low wages or with disabilities, refugees, mobile workers and homeless people. Traditional social housing no longer meets all their needs, so new, more creative solutions are required.

Friends of Europe, working with the Fondation Abbé Pierre and FEANTSA, brought together group of experts from the public and private sectors to look at the challenges for affordable housing and potential solutions. Their aim was to explore the creation of a European Housing Solutions Platform (HSP) in 2017, which could be a lever for developing sustainable cities and communities and encouraging economic growth.

The agenda focused on the rationale for, drivers of and opportunities for an HSP – with a special focus on different, creative and alternative approaches to affordable housing. A key aim was to develop a detailed proposal for a platform that can inform and influence the development of relevant European Union processes and funding streams. Such a platform should also be able to respond to requests for information and expertise from policymakers and stakeholders in EU member states.

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