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Property, eminent domain and dispossession in urban renewal projects: terra nullius in contemporary metropolis

Grant number: 22/14614-0
Support Opportunities:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Doctorate (Direct)
Effective date (Start): February 01, 2023
Effective date (End): September 30, 2023
Field of knowledge:Applied Social Sciences - Law - Theory of Law
Principal Investigator:Raquel Rolnik
Grantee:Débora Grama Ungaretti
Supervisor: Brenna Bhandar
Host Institution: Faculdade de Arquitetura e Urbanismo (FAU). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Research place: University of British Columbia, Vancouver (UBC), Canada  
Associated to the scholarship:19/09049-9 - Eminent domain, the real estate financial complex and despossessions in contemporary São Paulo, BP.DD


Part of the ongoing doctoral research "Eminent domain, real estate financial complex and dispossession in contemporary Sao Paulo", this research proposal to be undertaken abroad intends to deepen how eminent domain operates as a linking point between dispossession and financialization processes. The hypothesis is that this particular instrument of original acquisition of property enables the separation between the reality of the land occupation and the domain registered in the property's title; and the creation of a new property, liquid and without any historical traces; both through operations of abstraction crossed by gender, race and class biases. Therefore, the mobilization of eminent domain takes out of the scene popular territories through discrimination and stigmatization, and compensates the registered owners and companies by reintroducing the land into the titled and financialized market. By doing so, it produces a double erasure of those popular territories - materially, by ending the real occupation, and in the registered domain, reproducing and updating the historical pattern of racial segregation in the city. In order to deepen this hypothesis - both conceptually and historically - our intention is to mobilize international literature of critical legal theory, history of property, and critical planning theory; and also, to identify the analytical keys to analyze the study cases of contemporary São Paulo. (AU)

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