Segregation, Choice Based Letting and Social Housing: How Housing Policy Can Affect the Segregation Process

16 Pages Posted: 3 Mar 2012

See all articles by Maarten van Ham

Maarten van Ham

Delft University of Technology - OTB Research Institute for Housing, Urban and Mobility Studies; University of St. Andrews; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

David Manley

University of St. Andrews

Abstract

In this chapter we investigate the process of ethnic minority segregation in English social housing. Successive governments have expressed a commitment to the contradictory aims of providing greater choice – through the introduction of choice based letting – for households accessing an increasingly marginalised social housing sector whilst also expressing a determination to create more mixed communities and neighbourhoods. We consider the concept of choice in the context of a heavily residualised social housing sector, arguing that, for social housing tenants at least, the concept of real choice is a misnomer. We draw on research that has utilised unique administrative data and analysed the moves of all entrants into and movers within the social renting sector over a ten year period in England. The conclusion is that the introduction of choice based letting has influenced the residential outcomes of ethnic minorities and resulted in highly structured neighbourhood sorting that has segregated minority populations into the least desirable neighbourhoods of English cities.

Keywords: segregation, choice based letting, social housing, housing policy, UK

JEL Classification: R21, R23

Suggested Citation

van Ham, Maarten and Manley, David, Segregation, Choice Based Letting and Social Housing: How Housing Policy Can Affect the Segregation Process. IZA Discussion Paper No. 6372, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2015188

Maarten Van Ham (Contact Author)

Delft University of Technology - OTB Research Institute for Housing, Urban and Mobility Studies ( email )

P.O. Box 5043
2600 GA Delft
Netherlands
+31 15 278 2782 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.maartenvanham.nl

University of St. Andrews ( email )

North St
Saint Andrews, Fife KY16 9AJ
United Kingdom

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

David Manley

University of St. Andrews ( email )

North St
Saint Andrews, Fife KY16 9AJ
United Kingdom

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