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Who Gentrifies Low-income Neighborhoods?

  • McKinnish, Terra
  • Walsh, Randall
  • White, T. Kirk

This paper uses confidential Census data, specifically the 1990 and 2000 Census Long-Form data, to study the demographic processes underlying the gentrification of low income urban neighborhoods during the 1990’s. In contrast to previous studies, the analysis is conducted at the more refined census-tract level with a narrower definition of gentrification and more narrowly defined comparison neighborhoods. The analysis is also richly disaggregated by demographic characteristic, uncovering differential patterns by race, education, age and family structure that would not have emerged in the more aggregate analysis in previous studies. The results provide little evidence of displacement of low-income non-white households in gentrifying neighborhoods. The bulk of the income gains in gentrifying neighborhoods are attributed to white college graduates and black high school graduates. It is the disproportionate in-migration of the former and the disproportionate retention and income gains of the latter that appear to be the main engines of gentrification.

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File URL: http://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/6671/1/MPRA_paper_6671.pdf
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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 6671.

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Date of creation: Nov 2007
Date of revision: Nov 2007
Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:6671
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  1. Bond, E.W. & Coulson, N.E., 1988. "A Hedonic Approach To Residential Succession," Papers 2-88-1, Pennsylvania State - Department of Economics.
  2. Edward L. Glaeser & Matthew E. Kahn & Jordan Rappaport, 2000. "Why Do the Poor Live in Cities?," NBER Working Papers 7636, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. David Card & Alexandre Mas & Jesse Rothstein, 2008. "Tipping and the Dynamics of Segregation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 123(1), pages 177-218, 02.
  4. John M. Clapp & Stephen L. Ross, 2002. "Schools and Housing Markets: An Examination of School Segregation and Performance in Connecticut," Working papers 2002-08, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics.
  5. Sweeney, James L., 1974. "A commodity hierarchy model of the rental housing market," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 1(3), pages 288-323, July.
  6. Jan K. Brueckner & Stuart S. Rosenthal, 2009. "Gentrification and Neighborhood Housing Cycles: Will America's Future Downtowns Be Rich?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 91(4), pages 725-743, November.
  7. Elvin K Wyly & Daniel J Hammel, 2004. "Gentrification, segregation, and discrimination in the American urban system," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 36(7), pages 1215-1241, July.
  8. Rosenthal, Stuart S., 2008. "Old homes, externalities, and poor neighborhoods. A model of urban decline and renewal," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(3), pages 816-840, May.
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