Home Institution

University of Vermont

Publication Date

Spring 2013

Program Name

Argentina: Regional Integration, Development, and Social Change


The transformations of neoliberalism in Latin America produced profound structural shifts throughout the urban environment. In Buenos Aires, Argentina certain neighborhoods became hotbeds for change. One neighborhood, Palermo, formerly a working class neighborhood, transformed into a neighborhood of distinct locales, each with its own name connected to another large world city, such as New York and London. These areas became deeply tied to international brands and markets, sourcing goods and businesses from all over the world. In addition, the area grew tremendously in the sectors of leisure, entertainment, and gastronomy. New shops, bars, discotheques, restaurants, and boutiques sprouted up in both new constructions brought on with the growth of real estate, and also in older, renovated buildings that remained from the epoch of workshops and factories.

In this context, I explore the urban transformations in Palermo, a neighborhood located in the north of the city and also noted for being the largest of all districts in the capital. This paper explores issues of urban neoliberalism in the context of this neighborhood, making sense of new forms of fragmentation, in terms of the political, economic, and social sectors. As part of this fragmentation and rupture in the urban fabric, conflicts of social exclusion and gentrification have emerged alongside movements of resistance that are working to challenge the hegemonic nature of urban neoliberalism.

The study, through a qualitative investigation in Palermo, Buenos Aires, Argentina, concludes that there have been profound structural changes in the urban environment and the composition of Palermo that point to deepening gentrification, social exclusion y marginalization throughout Buenos Aires. However, new forms of resistance and struggle within the neighborhood alongside growing academic insight have raised many criticisms and suggestions for changes in urban development.


Community-Based Research | Family, Life Course, and Society | Urban Studies and Planning


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