Public Administration ETDs

Publication Date

Fall 4-18-2018


Rent or mortgage payments make up the largest portion of an American family’s budget. As there is a limited housing stock in metropolitan areas, low-income families struggle to find housing that is both adequate and affordable. Federal housing programs make funding available, but the provision of housing is left to local governments. Through the implementation of bold strategies and initiatives, local governments can help their low-income constituents find permanent housing for themselves and their families.

Public housing in the U.S. is associated with dilapidation, overcrowding, and social disorganization. In the past, housing projects have been shortsighted measures aimed at addressing the most critical problems. Instead of providing permanent housing to low-income residents, the focus was to house as many people as possible in one project with high-rise buildings and small units. A strategy of the late 20th century was tearing down high-rise housing projects, which displaced the residents living therein. Now, 21st-century strategies are to proliferate mixed-income apartment buildings, ensuring that the buildings are architecturally sound, are well maintained, are permanent or semi-permanent residences, and have access to occupational and social services.

This thesis evaluates social and intergovernmental factors affecting the provision of public housing by local governments in metropolitan areas across the U.S. The evidence revealed in this thesis provides analysis of data and findings that is useful to local governments, public housing authorities, non-profit housing organizations, federal and state programs supporting housing initiatives, private developers involved in low-income housing projects, and researchers interested in public housing policy.

Degree Name

Public Administration

Level of Degree


Department Name

School of Public Administration

First Committee Member (Chair)

Dr. Agustin Leon Moreta

Second Committee Member

Dr. Shuyang Peng

Third Committee Member

Dr. T Zane Reeves




housing, low-income housing, public housing, demographic, intergovernmental, public spending

Document Type