IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Ethnic Segregation and Public Goods: Evidence from Indonesia




This article contributes to the study of ethnic diversity and public goods provision by assessing the role of the spatial distribution of ethnic groups. Through a new theory that we call spatial interdependence, we argue that the segregation of ethnic groups can reduce or even neutralize the “diversity penalty†in public goods provision that results from ethnic fractionalization. This is because local segregation allows communities to use disparities in the level of public goods compared with other communities as leverage when advocating for more public goods for themselves, thereby ratcheting up the level of public goods across communities. We test this prediction on highly disaggregated data from Indonesia and find strong support that, controlling for ethnic fractionalization, segregated communities have higher levels of public goods. This has an important and underexplored implication: decentralization disadvantages integrated communities vis-à -vis their more segregated counterparts.

Suggested Citation

  • Tajima, Yuhki & Samphantharak, Krislert & Ostwald, Kai, 2018. "Ethnic Segregation and Public Goods: Evidence from Indonesia," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 112(3), pages 637-653, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:apsrev:v:112:y:2018:i:03:p:637-653_00

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: link to article abstract page
    Download Restriction: no


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Bharathi, Naveen & Malghan, Deepak & Mishra, Sumit & Rahman, Andaleeb, 2018. "Spatial Segregation, Multi-scale Diversity, and Public Goods," SocArXiv 4fq8z, Center for Open Science.
    2. Mariko Nakagawa & Yasuhiro Sato & Kazuhiro Yamamoto, 2019. "Segregation and Public Spending under Social Identification," CIRJE F-Series CIRJE-F-1132, CIRJE, Faculty of Economics, University of Tokyo.
    3. Desmet, Klaus & Gomes, Joseph Flavian & Ortuño-Ortín, Ignacio, 2020. "The geography of linguistic diversity and the provision of public goods," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 143(C).
    4. Ole Magnus Theisen & Håvard Strand & Gudrun Østby, 2020. "Ethno-political favouritism in maternal health care service delivery: Micro-level evidence from sub-Saharan Africa, 1981–2014," International Area Studies Review, Center for International Area Studies, Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, vol. 23(1), pages 3-27, March.

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cup:apsrev:v:112:y:2018:i:03:p:637-653_00. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Keith Waters). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.