When are Ghettos Bad? Lessons from Immigrant Segregation in the United States

36 Pages Posted: 21 Feb 2008

See all articles by Edward L. Glaeser

Edward L. Glaeser

Harvard University - Department of Economics; Brookings Institution; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

David M. Cutler

Harvard University - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS)

Jacob L. Vigdor

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: February 2008

Abstract

Recent studies provide conflicting evidence on the connection between ethnic or racial neighborhood segregation and outcomes. Some studies find that residence in an enclave is beneficial, some reach the opposite conclusion, and still others imply that any relationship is small. One hypothesis is that studies differ because the impact of segregation varies across groups, perhaps because its impact is more benign for better-educated groups. This paper presents new evidence on this hypothesis using data on first-generation immigrants in the United States. We confront the endogenous selection into residential enclaves and find that selection into enclave neighborhoods is on balance negative. Correcting for this selection produces positive mean effects of segregation, and a positive correlation between group average human capital and the impact of segregation.

Suggested Citation

Glaeser, Edward L. and Cutler, David M. and Vigdor, Jacob L., When are Ghettos Bad? Lessons from Immigrant Segregation in the United States (February 2008). Harvard Institute of Economic Research Discussion Paper No. 2152. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1095281 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1095281

Edward L. Glaeser (Contact Author)

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David M. Cutler

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Jacob L. Vigdor

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