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Is Segregation Robust?


  • Bøg, Martin


This paper studies the question of how well we understand segregation. The point of departure is Schelling’s spatial proximity model in one dimension. By introducing noise I show that segregation emerges as the long run prediction of neighborhood evolution, both when residents have Schelling-type threshold preferences and strict preferences for diversity. Analytical result are complemented with numerical simulations which show that within a reasonable time frame full segregation does not occur. When residents have a preference for diversity, I show that a natural perturbation away from the diversity monomorphism dramatically alters the long run prediction: integration is the unique long run prediction, even in the absence of noise.

Suggested Citation

  • Bøg, Martin, 2007. "Is Segregation Robust?," MPRA Paper 8774, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:8774

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Edward L. Glaeser & Bruce Sacerdote & José A. Scheinkman, 1996. "Crime and Social Interactions," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 111(2), pages 507-548.
    2. Ellison, Glenn, 1993. "Learning, Local Interaction, and Coordination," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 61(5), pages 1047-1071, September.
    3. Pancs, Romans & Vriend, Nicolaas J., 2007. "Schelling's spatial proximity model of segregation revisited," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(1-2), pages 1-24, February.
    4. Young, H Peyton, 1993. "The Evolution of Conventions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 61(1), pages 57-84, January.
    5. David M. Cutler & Edward L. Glaeser & Jacob L. Vigdor, 1999. "The Rise and Decline of the American Ghetto," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(3), pages 455-506, June.
    6. Borjas, George J, 1995. "Ethnicity, Neighborhoods, and Human-Capital Externalities," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(3), pages 365-390, June.
    7. Bergin, James & Lipman, Barton L, 1996. "Evolution with State-Dependent Mutations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(4), pages 943-956, July.
    8. Schelling, Thomas C, 1969. "Models of Segregation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 59(2), pages 488-493, May.
    9. David M. Cutler & Edward L. Glaeser, 1997. "Are Ghettos Good or Bad?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(3), pages 827-872.
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    Cited by:

    1. Junfu Zhang, 2011. "Tipping And Residential Segregation: A Unified Schelling Model," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(1), pages 167-193, February.

    More about this item


    segregation; Markov Process; Stochastic Stability; simulations;

    JEL classification:

    • D62 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Externalities
    • C73 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Stochastic and Dynamic Games; Evolutionary Games
    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games

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