Divided Cities: Increasing Socio-Spatial Polarization within Large Cities in the Netherlands

31 Pages Posted: 7 Mar 2015

See all articles by Merle Zwiers

Merle Zwiers

Delft University of Technology

Reinout Kleinhans

Delft University of Technology

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

Abstract

There is increasing evidence that our societies are polarizing. Most studies focus on labour market and educational outcomes and show a socioeconomic polarization of the bottom and top ends of the population distribution. Processes of social polarization have a spatial dimension which should be visible in the changing mosaic of neighbourhoods in cities. Many studies treat neighbourhoods as more or less static entities, but urban researchers are now increasingly interested in neighbourhood trajectories, moving away from point-in-time measures and enabling a close examination of processes of change. Sequence analysis allows for a visualization of complete trajectories, and is therefore gaining popularity in the social sciences.However, sequence analysis is mainly a descriptive method and statisticians have argued for the use of a tree-structured discrepancy analysis to examine to what extent outcome variability can be explained by a set of predictors. This paper offers a first empirical application of sequence analysis combined with a tree-structured discrepancy analysis. This paper contributes to the debate on urban renewal programs by offering a unique viewpoint on longitudinal neighbourhood change. Our findings show a clear pattern of socio-spatial polarization in Dutch cities, raising questions about the effects of area-based policies and the importance of path-dependency.

Keywords: neighbourhood change, socio-spatial polarization, urban renewal, sequence analysis, tree-structured discrepancy analysis

JEL Classification: O18, P25, R23

Suggested Citation

Zwiers, Merle and Kleinhans, Reinout and van Ham, Maarten, Divided Cities: Increasing Socio-Spatial Polarization within Large Cities in the Netherlands. IZA Discussion Paper No. 8882, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2575062

Merle Zwiers (Contact Author)

Delft University of Technology ( email )

Stevinweg 1
Stevinweg 1
Delft, 2628 CN
Netherlands

Reinout Kleinhans

Delft University of Technology ( email )

Maarten Van Ham

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

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