Research Activities

Research Projects

FY 2015/2016 Research Topic: C-20
Participation of the Urban Poor in Social Movements: Institutionalization and Agency of the Housing Movements in São Paulo


This paper studies the question of why the urban poor participate in social movements. I focus on the changes that occur on the inside of participants and structures, and as the main theoretical framework, I rely on the interactions of the "structures" and "agency" that have been studied by some sociologists. In particular, I analyze the actions of the primary actor, the urban poor people, in social movements in São Paulo and the interrelationship with the structure of the participatory administrations, which have recently grown in number and become increasingly institutionalized in Brazil. The agency, which refers to the initiatives and internal developments, is difficult to determine in case of urban poor people, and few previous studies on social movements focus on the agency in relation to their participation. I attempt to determine that the urban poor can also conduct their initiatives and in fact realize their agency by committing to the social movements in interaction with the structures that have increased their political opportunities. Thus, their sense of fulfillment from the increased opportunities contributes to promoting their participation in social movements.


April 2015 - March 2016

Members of the Research Project
[ Organizer ] KONTA Ryohei
  • Monograph in English