Welcome to Demystifying Community Housing

May 1, 2024

Welcome to Demystifying Community Housing, a special series from the IRPP’s Policy Options Podcast, which explores the different facets of community housing and its role in addressing Canada’s housing crisis.

In this episode, we speak with Yushu Zhu and Meg Holden, professors of urban studies at Simon Fraser University, who are leading the production of this podcast series. Together we talk about their research on community housing, the reason they worked on this podcast and what listeners can expect.

This episode is part of the Demystifying Community Housing Podcast series.

Show Notes

The production of the podcast series is led by Dr. Yushu Zhu and Dr. Meg Holden at Simon Fraser University as part of the Community Housing Canada project and the Housing Inequality in Canada project, with support from the IRPP. Student researchers include Hanan Ali, Natasha Mhuriro, Pok Man Tong, and Khoa Vo. This podcast has been a dedicated collaboration, with production assistance by Cléa Desjardins, Ricardo Montrose, and Luc Moulaison at IRPP, and audio producer Jackie G. If you like what you heard and you want to know more about the Institute for Research on Public Policy, head over to

Additional resources:

Community Housing Canada – Partners in Resilience: A research-practice partnership project aimed at increasing the sustainability and resiliency of the community housing sector. It is part of an independent, Canada-wide collaboration of academics and community partners: The Collaborative Housing Research Network (CHRN).

The neighbor spectrum in community housing: Pro-social, anti-social and asocial neighboring in Vancouver (Holden et al., 2024): This journal article presents focus group research with community housing residents in Vancouver, Canada, investigating the role, activities, and importance of neighboring to these individuals living in vulnerable situations. A commentary based on this research is published The Conversation: Higher density living is changing the way neighbouring works in Canada.

Housing vulnerability and well-being in the COVID-19 pandemic (Zhu et al., 2022): Drawing on a representative sample survey of B.C. adult residents, this report examines different aspects of housing situations and factors that may increase housing vulnerability or resilience during the pandemic.

Housing Vulnerability Reconsidered: Applications and Implications for Housing Research, Policy and Practice (Zhu et al., 2024): A special issue published at Housing, Theory and Society (academic journal). This issue presents research into what housing vulnerability means in different world regions, what structures and systems may be driving it, and the variety of experiences of housing vulnerability.


This podcast series receives funding from the Canada Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Partnership Grant for The Community Housing project [430-2021-00887] and the Insight Development Grant for the Housing Inequality project [890-2018-1013].