The Temporal Stability of Children's Neighborhood Experiences: A Follow-Up from Birth to Age 15

11 Pages Posted: 25 Apr 2017

See all articles by Tom Kleinepier

Tom Kleinepier

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

Despite increasing attention being paid to the temporal dynamics of childhood disadvantage, children's neighborhood characteristics are often measured at a single point in time. Whether such cross-sectional measures serve as reliable proxies for children's long-run neighborhood conditions depends on the stability in children's neighborhood experiences over time. We investigate the temporal stability in children's neighborhood environment, focusing on two of the most commonly studied neighborhood characteristics: The ethnic composition and mean income of the neighborhood. Using Dutch population register data, we follow an entire cohort of children from birth up until age 15. We use year-to-year correlations in the percentage non-Western minorities and the mean income in the neighborhood to evaluate the temporal stability of children's neighborhood experiences. Children's neighborhood characteristics were found to be more stable over time with regard to ethnic composition than with regard to income. Children who had moved at least once were found to have lower stability in neighborhood characteristics than children who never moved. Finally, neighborhood experiences were found to be more stable over time for ethnic minorities than for the native Dutch, although differences were small with regard to income. Single point-in-time measurements of neighborhood characteristics are reasonable proxies for the long-run ethnic composition of children's neighborhood environment, but rather noisy proxies for the long-run income status of their neighborhood, particularly for those who moved.

Keywords: neighbourhood experiences, neighbourhood environment, children, income, temporal dynamics

JEL Classification: J13, J62, O18, R23

Suggested Citation

Kleinepier, Tom and van Ham, Maarten, The Temporal Stability of Children's Neighborhood Experiences: A Follow-Up from Birth to Age 15. IZA Discussion Paper No. 10696. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2956791

Tom Kleinepier (Contact Author)

Delft University of Technology ( email )

Stevinweg 1
Stevinweg 1
Delft, 2628 CN
Netherlands

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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