This paper reports the first evaluation of the Waverley Community Housing Officer project: the project is the first planned and co-ordinated attempt by state and local government in New South Wales to implement a specific role for local government in housing. It was established in April 1980 as a two year pilot project funded jointly by the Department of Youth and Community Services and the Housing Commission of NSW, and involves the employment of a housing specialist to establish housing policy and, within its framework, to undertake a range of housing programmes and housing-related services in a local government area. One of the stated objectives of the project is the need for its evaluation. In August 1981, the Social Welfare Research Centre of the University of New South Wales was commissioned by the Consultative Group overseeing the project to undertake the first stage of that evaluation. Our findings, which relate to a substantially established but incomplete project, are presented in the following chapters. In Chapter 1, the origins of the project and the history of its objectives, practice and effects are documented. Chapter 2 describes the perceptions of the project reported to us by a large range of people directly connected with it. The records of the project and people's perceptions of these are placed in a context for interpretation in Chapter 3. Here it is argued that the project must also be evaluated against the broader economic, political and bureaucratic structures which pattern housing provision in Australia. Our considered assessment, integrating the hard data on the project, the judgements of it by interested groups and individuals and the societal context is discussed in Chapter 4. Chapter 5 addresses the specific question of how the objectives, strategies and achievements of the project might be generalised, paying particular attention to its applicability to other local government areas. Our recommendations for the future of the project are contained in the sixth and final chapter.