Immigration and Metropolitan Residential Segregation

Project: Research project

Project Details


[unreadable] DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): It is commonly thought that differences in residential patterns across racial and ethnic groups reflect social divisions and distance. Very high levels of Black-White segregation, for example, illustrate deep, historically- rooted racial fissures in the United States. Moderate declines in Black-White segregation in recent decades likely indicate some change in racial attitudes and stronger enforcement of antidiscrimination laws. In contrast, Asians and Hispanics have experienced no change or small increases in residential segregation in recent decades. It is thought that high levels of immigration may be affecting patterns of segregation for Asians and Hispanics, as new immigrants often settle in ethnic enclaves even as longer-term residents disperse into outlying areas. However, there has been no direct test of this proposition, in part due to data constraints. The goal of this project is to therefore use restricted data from the 1990 and 2000 censuses to document patterns of residential segregation among native- and foreign-born people of various racial and ethnic groups, and examine the interplay between race and nativity in producing observed patterns. In doing so, this study aims to shed light on the aptness of the spatial assimilation model in explaining residential patterns of groups composed of many immigrants, as opposed to models that stress the overarching role of race and racial conflict in determining where people live. This research is guided by the following questions? How do levels of residential segregation vary by race, nativity (whether foreign-born or not), and country of origin?? Is residential segregation lower for immigrants who have been in the country longer than recent arrivals?? Are immigrants of various racial and ethnic groups more segregated (from non-Hispanic Whites) than the native-born of those groups, even after controlling various characteristics such as socioeconomic status?? Does nativity have a much larger effect on the residential patterns of some groups, such as Hispanics and Asians, than others, such as African Americans?? Conversely, does race matter more for Black immigrants than Asian and Hispanic immigrants in determining their levels of residential segregation?? How do multiethnic/racial individuals? and immigrants in particular? Vary in their segregation patterns, and how are these patterns contingent on the combination of races reported?? Are mixed-nativity families less segregated than those where all members are foreign-born? [unreadable] [unreadable] [unreadable] [unreadable]
Effective start/end date7/1/066/30/10


  • National Institute of Child Health and Human Development: $362,517.00
  • Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development: $123,347.00
  • National Institute of Child Health and Human Development: $14,390.00
  • National Institute of Child Health and Human Development: $105,011.00


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