A Model of Residential Change and Neighborhood Tipping
This paper applies the theory of probabilistic consumer demand to an analysis of residential change at the urban neighborhood scale. By developing the profit maximizing pricing behaviour of housing suppliers, it is shown that neighborhood transitions from high income to low income and from white to black can be explained on purely economic grounds without involving prejudicial preferences. The analytical model explains two types of transition. In the first, a neighborhood's social mix changes gradually in response to gradual exogenous changes. In the second, a neighborhood "tips" suddenly in response to similar exogenous changes. The two transitions can occur depending on the characteristics of the demand functions for the two competing groups.
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