Mobility of Affluent Neighborhoods in U.S. Cities

Claudia Solari, University of California, Los Angeles

Residents of metropolitan areas are geographically sorted by key dimensions, including economic characteristics. Interest in economic segregation has centered on poor neighborhoods, with special attention to those chronically poor. In order to paint a clearer picture of social inequality, however, we must understand the life-course of neighborhoods across the full economic spectrum, from poor to affluent. Some researchers suggest disparities between the poor and affluent are more strongly driven by the concentrated advantage of the affluent rather than the concentrated disadvantage of the poor. In this project, I investigate the rates and patterns of mobility for affluent, middle income, and poor neighborhoods in U.S. cities using census data from 1970 to 2000. This paper will enhance our understanding about the economic mobility of affluent neighborhoods compared to other neighborhood types and identify trends in the pattern of neighborhood mobility, thereby offering insight on a relatively understudied dimension of social stratification.

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Presented in Session 99: Neighborhoods, Poverty, and Inequality