Squatter Settlements and Policy Innovation in Peru
In Abraham F. Lowenthal, ed., The Peruvian Experiment: Continuity and Change under Military Rule. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1975.
26 Pages Posted: 8 Mar 2017
Date Written: 1975
The reformist military government which came to power in Peru in 1968 introduced important innovations in policy toward squatter settlements. Taken together, these innovations constitute a coherent policy which appears to be one of the more successful aspects of the government's effort to transform Peruvian society. At the same time, however, the program in the settlements is a complex blend of policies from earlier periods – drawing not only on the programs of a previous reform government, but also on policies proposed and carried out by the Peruvian Right.
This chapter analyzes the steps through which the post-1968 programs in squatter settlements evolved, focusing primarily on policy toward the settlements of Lima. It begins with a description of the growth of these settlements and a characterization of government policy in earlier periods. Two phases of policy under the post-1968 government are then examined: the definition of priorities up to the Pamplona invasion of May 1971 and the consolidation of the policy after that invasion. A concluding section places the current period in perspective by contrasting it with policy in other countries and under earlier governments in Peru.
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