טכניון מכון טכנולוגי לישראל
הטכניון מכון טכנולוגי לישראל - בית הספר ללימודי מוסמכים  
M.Sc Thesis
M.Sc StudentWallerstein Sebastian
SubjectIs there Gentrification-Led Displacement of Palestinian
Israeli Citizens from Jaffa?
DepartmentDepartment of Architecture and Town Planning
Supervisors Professor Emeritus Rachelle Alterman
Ms. Emily Silverman
Full Thesis text - in Hebrew Full thesis text - Hebrew Version


Abstract

Over the past four decades, gentrification research has focused on population displacement as a key impact of gentrification. Minorities - relatively vulnerable and highly affected by displacement - have attracted special attention by researchers. This paper uses Marcuse’s distinction across four types of displacement to examine the evidence for displacement of Palestinian [1] citizens of Israel living in Jaffa, as a result of recent gentrification.

The heart of the paper is a case study of gentrification in Jaffa, Tel Aviv. The research develops a methodology of indicators to measure the extent of displacement for Palestinian-Israelis in Jaffa. Eviction orders, issued to some 500 households, are used to measure 'direct last-resident displacement', population data is analyzed to understand whether 'direct-chain displacement' has occurred, and housing prices and housing cost burden provide an indication of 'exclusionary displacement'. The methodology of indicators to measure displacement, while partial, may prove useful to other case study areas.

The findings allow us to conclude that Palestinian-Israelis in Jaffa are facing 'exclusionary displacement' from high-demand areas, especially those concentrated in the coastal neighborhoods of Ajami and Givat Alyia (Jabalya) and the northern areas of Jaffa, where housing is well beyond the range of affordability for the vast majority of Palestinian-Israelis. In addition, Palestinians face the potential for large-scale 'direct last-resident displacement' if the eviction orders issued against 'absentee ownership' dwellers are carried out.

A literature review of the ways that ethnic minorities in general are affected by gentrification-led displacement highlights three main concerns: housing distress, loss of job opportunities, and psychological stress. Further research is needed to evaluate whether Palestinian-Israelis in Jaffa experience similar impacts, but housing distress, loss of job opportunities, and adoption of 'defensive development' strategies - giving preference to nationalist narratives over procuring practical solutions to counter displacement - seem likely.

    Finally, the paper compiles the knowledge gathered by academic and practitioner literature dealing with tools to prevent negative impacts of displacement. The research presents four groups of tools:
  1. to counter direct displacement,
  2. to counter exclusionary displacement by lowering housing costs,
  3. to counter exclusionary displacement by empowering the community and
  4. to diminish displacement pressure.
    The research presents twenty one tools and identifies ten as having the greatest potential of implementation in Jaffa.

[1] In recent years, Arab citizens of Israel, also referred to as Israeli Arabs, have increasingly elected to define themselves as Palestinians.