Meaton, Julia and Alnsour, Jamal (2014) Housing Conditions in Palestinian Refugee Camps, Jordan. Cities, 36 (2). pp. 65-73.
Abstract

This paper evaluates the quality of housing in a Palestinian refugee camp in Jordan. More than two million registered refugees live in Jordan, most of whom living in thirteen refugee camps established in the late 1960s following the Arab-Israeli conflict of 1967. Many of these camps are characterized by poor living conditions and associated health, social and environmental problems. However, there is scant empirical evidence regarding the quality of the housing in these camps. This paper addresses this gap by reporting on the findings of a questionnaire survey of 382 household units in Baqa’a Camp, the largest of the camps. The quantitative survey was triangulated by a series of extensive fieldwork visits to the area. Findings reveal that the housing in the camp is generally substandard. Poor structure and maintenance are key problems and this paper identifies and discusses various challenges, political and practical, that stand in the way of housing improvements. The paper concludes by suggesting that new models of ownership and responsibility need to be forged between the stakeholders in order to break the current stalemate of inaction.

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