chapter  5
Brazil: confronting the urban question in Brazil: 1996–2016
A politico-institutional assessment 1
WithEdesio Fernandes
Pages 31

This chapter provides a general assessment of the main developments in Brazil during the 1996–2016 period regarding the core urban policy areas highlighted in the commitments of the Habitat II agenda. It argues that, rather than the lack of laws, actions, or resources, it was the lack of an articulated urban policy framework what determined the contradictory dynamics of urban development, policymaking and management in the country. The chapter discusses the broader historical context in which significant legal and institutional changes were promoted in Brazil prior to the 1996 event. It provides a critical, and rather personal, analysis of what has been happening in Brazil in the field of urban policy since Habitat II, especially from the viewpoint of the main ongoing, and intertwined, politico-institutional and sociopolitical processes in the country. The post–Habitat II period has been marked by many ups and downs in Brazil, advances and backlashes, euphoria and depression, but the current mood is one of uncertainty.