Towards ecological place management in UK housing associations: organising tomorrow’s places

James Scott Vandeventer, Javier Lloveras, Gary Warnaby

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


The purpose of this paper is to conceptualise how place management practices in UK housing associations (HAs) involve processes of ecological place management.

Ethnographic fieldwork focusing on how communal spaces are organised on a housing estate in a UK city revealed the importance of negotiation with other actors, including an HA which is responsible for managing the estate. The authors draw on extensive participant observation with residents, as well as interviews with both residents and employees of the HA, to show the wider forces and complexities involved in these ecological place management practices.

This paper identifies hybrid socio-ecological, socio-political and political-economic dynamics unfolding as places are managed and organised. These widen the scope of place management research and practice to account for multiple ways places are organised.

Research limitations/implications
This paper offers a critical perspective on place management, developing an ecological approach that is applicable both to the relatively new context of housing and to more established sites in town and city centres.

Practical implications
This paper’s findings point to ways that housing and place management practitioners, both in the UK and elsewhere, can use an ecological approach to re-frame their strategic and practical actions with regards to “place”.

This paper contributes to unveiling the complexity involved in place management and organisation, thereby encouraging place managers to embrace ecological thinking capable of addressing future challenges.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)105-124
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Place Management and Development
Issue number1
Early online date11 Aug 2022
Publication statusPublished - 27 Jan 2023


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