General question: real estate development as a political economy phenomenon – four dimensions Concrete questions addressing processes and actors Research materials collected and analyzed (country and local levels)
1. A product of state-led deindustrialization linked to privatization as accumulation by dispossession. – How are privatization and deindustrialization contributing to the formation of real estate development?  – A space where the relation between local and global capital (and the spatial fix) could happen – How did privatization happen as a condition of the formation of market economy and private sector, defined by international and national actors as the aim of the transformations in Romania at the end of 1980? – How did privatization happen in the selected cities and the case of the selected factories? – How did deindustrialization happen as a process of economic restructuring? Legislation, general and specific for the selected factories AVAS documents about privatization World Bank documents regarding privatization Press material about privatization and bankruptcy of former socialist industries Statistical data in the selected cities and their evolution after 1990:  INS on population; housing stock; new constructions + data about the contribution of industry, construction, and real estate transactions to GDP, employment, profit; salaries; new companies; major employers
2. Investment and accumulation in the secondary circuit of capital, i.e., built environment. – When and how did real estate development start, and how has it evolved in the past 30 years? – How is the real estate market connected to the financial markets? – Who are the main foreign and local actors of real estate development in the selected cities, and who invested in developments on former industrial platforms?: developers, developers & investors, real estate agencies, investment funds, banks, non-banking financial institutions, REITs  – What do the selected actors do and in which real estate sector (residential, office, retail, logistics), and what kind of business models do they follow? – How is financialization manifested in real estate development in the selected cities and in different real estate sectors? Legislation linked to real estate development: constructions, fiscal facilities, urbanism and territorial development Press material Interviews Documents of real estate developers MO-IV and data about companies (profit, employees, income, turnout) ANCPI: maps; data about registered transactions Town Hall data about properties (number of persons with more than one property) BNR data about loans to the population ONCR data about capital: Romanian and foreign capital in the sector of real estate transactions about real estate market prices Documents of real estate consultancy firms: Property forum, Colliers International
3. A constitutive element of capitalism. – How is real estate contributing to the formation of the ruling capitalist class and of the social hierarchies within the working classes (focusing on the discursive construction of housing classes) – How do real estate actors define their role in the economy? – How do the real estate developers construct the ideal consumer by promising a new, exceptional lifestyle for the chosen classes?  Interviews Documents of real estate developers: promotional materials 
4. A process of re-urbanization via: – Spatial reconversion and renewed urban governance – Relation between the state and the capital – The guiding principle of entrepreneurialism    – How do public administration and real estate actors define real estate development’s role in the city’s spatial development as a tool for transforming socialist cities? – What roles have state actors and local public administration in real estate development played via political decision-making and urban planning? Interviews Governmental mortgage programs’ documents Development strategies and other policy documents Local Council decisions (construction authorizations) Urbanistic documents (PUG, PUZ) Municipality documents elaborated by the World Bank: urban regeneration, magnet cities, catching up regions, urban politics, growth poles, competitive cities