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Law and Land Policy in Latin America

Shifting Paradigms and Possibilities for Action
Edésio Fernandes and María Mercedes Maldonado Copello, Julio 1, 2009

The rapid and intense urbanization in Latin America over the last 50 years is often contrasted in the literature with an inadequate urban planning system as a way to explain many resulting social problems: high land prices and property speculation, rampant informality, extreme sociospatial segregation, inadequate urban infrastructure and services, environmental degradation, and the like. The literature is largely silent, however, on the role played by national legal systems, which have both contributed to this situation and reacted against it. The pivotal role of the legal order cannot be underestimated.