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Public transit and the spatial distribution of minority employment: Evidence from a natural experiment

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  • Harry J. Holzer

    (Georgetown Public Policy Institute, Georgetown University)

  • John M. Quigley

    (Department of Economics and Goldman School of Public Policy, University of California, Berkeley)

  • Steven Raphael

    (Goldman School of Public Policy, University of California, Berkeley)

Abstract

A recent expansion of the San Francisco Bay Area's heavy rail system represents an exogenous change in the accessibility of inner-city minority communities to a concentrated suburban employment center. We evaluate this natural experiment by conducting a two-wave longitudinal survey of firms, with the first wave of interviews conducted immediately before the opening of service, and the second wave approximately a year later. Within-firm changes in the propensity to hire minority workers for firms near the station were compared with those located farther away. Also estimated was the effect of employer distance to the new stations on changes in propensity to hire minorities. Results indicate a sizable increase in the hiring of Latinos near the new stations, but little evidence of an effect on black hiring rates. © 2003 by the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management.

Suggested Citation

  • Harry J. Holzer & John M. Quigley & Steven Raphael, 2003. "Public transit and the spatial distribution of minority employment: Evidence from a natural experiment," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 22(3), pages 415-441.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:jpamgt:v:22:y:2003:i:3:p:415-441
    DOI: 10.1002/pam.10139
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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