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Sustaining housing through planned maintenance in remote Central Australia


Grealy, L and Lea, T and Moskos, M and Benedict, R and Habibis, D and King, S, Sustaining housing through planned maintenance in remote Central Australia, Housing Studies ISSN 0267-3037 (2022) [Refereed Article]

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DOI: doi:10.1080/02673037.2022.2084045


Once housing is constructed, its sustainability depends on the efficacy of property maintenance. In remote Indigenous communities in Australia, responsive or reactive approaches to property maintenance dominate over planned and preventive attention, leaving housing in various states of disrepair. By documenting an approach that is succeeding in this wider context, this article shows the commonplace situation of poorly maintained social housing is entirely interruptible. It does so by examining an alternative and exceptional approach taken on the remote Aṉangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (APY) Lands in South Australia, where housing benefits from a planned maintenance program combined with an environmental health program. Through detailed empirical analysis of program datasets, interviews, and ethnographic fieldwork, this article describes the expert, systematic, and attentive work required to sustain functional housing in the wider context of undersupply, crowding, and challenging environmental conditions. We argue for the necessity of planned maintenance approaches as an essential component of sustainable housing, both to extend the life of housing assets and to ensure householder health and wellbeing.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:maintenance, sustainability, housing quality, Indigenous housing policy, healthy housing, environmental health
Research Division:Human Society
Research Group:Policy and administration
Research Field:Housing policy
Objective Division:Indigenous
Objective Group:Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community services
Objective Field:Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community service programs
UTAS Author:Lea, T (Associate Professor Tess Lea)
UTAS Author:Habibis, D (Associate Professor Daphne Habibis)
ID Code:150434
Year Published:2022
Deposited By:Office of the School of Social Sciences
Deposited On:2022-06-15
Last Modified:2023-03-06

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