Our History

The Observatório de Favelas (“Slum Observatory”) is a social organization that undertakes research, consultancy and public actions to produce knowledge and elaborate political proposals focused on slums and urban issues. The Observatório aims at implementing an agenda of “Rights to the City” based on a new definition of the slums, extending this to public policies.

Founded in 2001, Observatório de Favelas is a non-governmental organization with headquarters in Maré, Rio de Janeiro, and operates throughout Brazil. The founders and current members are researchers and professionals whose own roots lie in the slums.

The Observatório’s mission is to elaborate concepts, projects, programs and practices that contribute to the formulation, monitoring and evaluation of public policies designed to overcome social inequalities. To be effective, these policies must be designed to extend rights, encourage participatory citizenship and guarantee human rights in the slums.

The Observatório has projects and actions in three institutional areas:

For each project, the Observatório’s objectives are the following:

  • Create an extensive socio-educational network designed to influence public policies so that they are effective and create horizontal social practices in the slums;
  • Monitor public policies focused on the slums using a variety of conceptual and methodological tools;
  • Elaborate new concepts and information to combat the criminalizing and generalizing view of the slums;
  • Formulate and implement exemplary practices in the fields of education, income, job generation, housing, home ownership regularization, culture, communication and citizen security;
  • Create innovative references for knowledge production in our social and political network in order to make the proposals of “Rights to the City” possible.

To access materials produced by the Observatório, please visit our  Resources page.

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Addresses and Directions

Rua Teixeira Ribeiro, 535, Maré
Rio de Janeiro – RJ
Cep: 21044-251 / Map


55 (21) 3104-4057
55 (21) 3888-3220

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