Hidden homelessness: international evidence review

This report "Exploring Ways of Identifying and Counting Hidden Homeless Populations" presents an overview of the methods used internationally to identify or count people experiencing hidden forms of homelessness and the populations that may be likely to experience it. The report also considers the Scottish context and suggests areas where further research may be useful.

1. Introduction

This report presents the outcomes of an evidence review aimed at producing a better understanding of the best practices to identify and count people experiencing concealed forms of homelessness, also referred to as 'hidden homelessness' or housing insecurity. An initial scoping of the literature identified a gap regarding evidence on hidden homelessness in Scotland. This evidence review will attempt to fill a part of that gap by exploring evidence on the approaches used internationally to better identify people that - due to varied circumstances - are not recorded and counted as homeless despite meeting the legal definition of homelessness. Furthermore, this evidence review also explores which population groups evidence suggests may be at risk of experiencing hidden homelessness. To conclude, it reflects on what lessons can be learned to strengthen our understanding of hidden homelessness in Scotland.

This research was conducted as part of a wider programme of work within the Better Homes Division of The Scottish Government. This programme has the overarching aim to generate better understanding of the circumstances faced by people who are homeless, at risk of homelessness or who are facing housing insecurity but do not appear in Scotland's homelessness statistics. The outcomes will support our policy responses and interventions so that they are guided by the best quality data possible. It will also contribute to the fulfilment of Scotland's commitment to ending homelessness and rough sleeping.


Email: socialresearch@gov.scot

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