I think that it is true that we can’t solve the problem of slums with most governments in their current state. This isn’t always about corruption, but the fact that populations have gotten to be so large, that we can’t allocate enough money to some things that need to be addressed because there are so many other issues. Think about a couple that have one child–they might struggle, but they’ll probably get along OK, but if they have 10 children, they’re in trouble.
What we can’t forget is that as architects we don’t need to get a contract to help the slums. It’s not economically feasible to do that at this point anyway. What we really need to do is find more affordable, ecologically viable ways to make housing first. I read a story about how an architect in London made a set of houses by reusing those railroad freight cars. See, things like that are thinking outside the box (no pun intended).