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Quality of Life in Urban Neighborhoods in Colombia: The Cases of Bogotá and Medellín

Author

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  • Carlos Medina
  • Leonardo Morales
  • Jairo Nuñez

Abstract

We use data from Bogotá and Medellín to describe key quality of life indicators of each city and illustrate their spatial segregation at the census sector level and present evidence that the main two Colombian cities are highly spatially segregated according to their education levels and access to education, coverage of public services, households headed by women and key demographic variables like their levels of adolescent pregnancy. Not surprisingly, our estimated quality of life indexes resemble the mentioned segregation patterns in each city. We present evidence that the spatial agglomeration is statistically significant for each of the variables enumerated. We estimate hedonic models of house values and life satisfaction for Bogotá and Medellín and find that the importance of the average level of education at the census sector level to determine house prices is striking. We also compare hedonic models for Bogotá and Medellín. Bogotá is better endowed than Medellín in the variables included in the analysis, in particular, it has higher education levels, and additionally, education is more equally distributed within census sectors. Bogotá has also better access to gas, and has in general houses with better conditions. The models based on house values and life satisfaction approaches used in this article lead to similar conclusions in the aggregate when comparing their implied quality of life indexes. Although each approach allows us to rank the specific determinants of quality of life, and these determinant depend on the approach, their implied aggregated indexes suggest that they are just different faces of the same story. From a policy perspective, the evidence suggests that redesigning the current socioeconomic stratification system in a way that still allows reaching the poorest while preventing segregation to deepen, might be among the most important challenge to face in order to improve quality of life in main Colombian cities.

Suggested Citation

  • Carlos Medina & Leonardo Morales & Jairo Nuñez, 2008. "Quality of Life in Urban Neighborhoods in Colombia: The Cases of Bogotá and Medellín," Borradores de Economia 536, Banco de la Republica de Colombia.
  • Handle: RePEc:bdr:borrec:536
    DOI: 10.32468/be.536
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    Cited by:

    1. Alejandro Gaviria & Carlos Medina & Leonardo Morales & Jairo Núñez, 2010. "The Cost of Avoiding Crime: The Case of Bogotá," NBER Chapters, in: The Economics of Crime: Lessons for and from Latin America, pages 101-132, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Carlos Augusto Olarte Bacares, 2014. "Criminality spread: a "Boomerang effect" of public transport improvements?," Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne 14013, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne.
    3. Luis Galvis & Bladimir Carrillo, 2013. "à ndice de precios espacial para la vivienda urbana en Colombia: una aplicación con métodos de emparejamiento," Revista de Economía del Rosario, Universidad del Rosario, June.
    4. Alejandro Gaviria & Carlos Medina & Jorge Tamayo, 2010. "Assessing the Link between Adolescent Fertility and Urban Crime," BORRADORES DE ECONOMIA 006860, BANCO DE LA REPÚBLICA.
    5. Carlos Augusto Olarte Bacares, 2011. "Transport networks' accessibility and jobs' accessibility: the significance of this correlation on the configuration of labor market and their consequences on social configuration in the city Bogotá," ERSA conference papers ersa11p914, European Regional Science Association.
    6. Carlos Augusto Olarte Bacares, 2013. "The criminality sprawl: The 'Boomerang effect' of public transport improvements," ERSA conference papers ersa13p1085, European Regional Science Association.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Quality of Life; Life Satisfaction; Happiness; Segregation; Hedonic Models; Public Goods.;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D60 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - General
    • H7 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations
    • I3 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty
    • J0 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General
    • J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics

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