Press Releases

U.S. Racial Minority Groups Continue to Live in Separate and Unequal Neighborhoods

January 30th 2015

NYU Furman Center research finds large differences in the neighborhood environments experienced by different racial groups; these racial differences are amplified in more segregated metropolitan areas

New York, NY: Nationwide, minority groups and whites continue to live in highly unequal neighborhoods, according to a research brief released this week by the NYU Furman Center.
The brief, Race and Neighborhoods in the 21stCentury, outlines the findings of a broader empirical study that examined national patterns of segregation between the years 1980 and 2010. The research finds that U.S. minority groups and whites continue to live in highly unequal neighborhoods.
The research finds that while segregation between blacks and whites has declined over the past several decades, it remains quite high. Among Hispanics and Latinos, segregation levels saw little change from 1980 to 2010.
“Residential segregation alone is not necessarily a cause for concern,” said Ingrid Gould Ellen, Faculty Director of the NYU Furman Center and co-author of the study. “But persistent segregation combined with a significant gap in neighborhood conditions—in crime rates, school quality, and poverty rates—is troubling.”
The research shows large gaps remain between black and Hispanic neighborhoods versus white neighborhoods in terms of services and conditions, such as schools and safety. Black and Hispanic households tend to live in neighborhoods with higher poverty rates, fewer college-educated neighbors, lower-performing schools, and higher violent crime rates. Moreover, these differences in neighborhood conditions are amplified in more segregated metropolitan areas.
Working Paper: Race and neighborhoods in the 21st century: What does segregation mean today? (PDF): Authors: Jorge De la Roca, Ingrid Gould Ellen, Katherine M. O’Regan. Also published inRegional Science and Urban Economics.

Read the Research Brief: Race and Neighborhoods in the 21st Century (PDF)
Read a summary of the brief on The Stoop blog.

For more information: Shannon Moriarty, [email protected], 212.998.6492 (w), 617-824-0069 (c)
About the NYU Furman Center 

The NYU Furman Center advances research and debate on housing, neighborhoods, and urban policy. Established in 1995, it is a joint center of the New York University School of Law and the Wagner Graduate School of Public Service. More information can be found at [email protected]