Construction and clearance in Israel, 1960–1975: between the local and the international

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This article traces the development and crystallization of urban-planning-and-renewal outlooks in Israel in view of the tension between physical renewal and social rehabilitation. The focus on the coalescence of early Israeli policy (1960-1975) reveals a gradual and protracted process in which the concept of social renewal trickled into the agenda of policymakers and experts. We argue that in the Israeli case, the belated arrival of the ‘bulldozer approach', and the consolidation of the local urban-renewal approach at a time when policymakers and planners in Europe and North America were shifting away from slum demolition, combined with local social circumstances and changes in social policy, ultimately prompted Israeli policymakers to focus on preserving existing communities and favouring residents' co-optation into the process. This analysis of the encounter between Western perceptions of the city, and the consolidating urbanity of ‘new’ states that attained sovereignty after World War II, yields an additional point of view on processes that characterized urban renewal in the second half of the twentieth century. This analysis elucidates the international nature of urban renewal and the reciprocal relations between ideas and knowledge that took shape in the Anglo-American world and those of local legislators and experts elsewhere.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)975-994
Number of pages20
JournalPlanning Perspectives
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2023


  • 1965 Construction and Clearance Law
  • Israel
  • Urban renewal
  • policy making
  • slum clearance

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development


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