Academic journal article Southeastern Geographer

The Impact of Increased Diversity on the Residential Landscape of a Sunbelt Metropolis: Racial and Ethnic Segregation across the Atlanta Metropolitan Region, 1990-2010

Academic journal article Southeastern Geographer

The Impact of Increased Diversity on the Residential Landscape of a Sunbelt Metropolis: Racial and Ethnic Segregation across the Atlanta Metropolitan Region, 1990-2010

Article excerpt

The urban South has been significantly transformed over the last few decades by a rapid increase in racial and ethnic diversity. This research investigates the impacts that increased diversity has had on the levels of residential segregation among racial and/or ethnic groups across the urban core of Atlanta, Georgia from 1990 to 2010. Empirical analysis entailed the measurement of two dimensions of segregation evident among Non-Hispanic whites, African-Americans, Hispanics, and Asians. Measures of residential segregation were decomposed in order to investigate the relative impacts of region-wide compositional change and intra urban redistributive change on segregation among the four groups. During the two decades, Atlanta exhibited very modest forms of integration, yet in certain contexts the region actually became more segregated residentially. Results suggest that Non-Hispanic whites, Asians, and Hispanics exhibited some degree of "ethnic (or racial) self-selectivity" that functioned to concentrate these groups residentially, although these forces were partially offset by other forces operating at both the neighborhood and metropolitan scales. The evidence further suggests that the residential experiences among minorities were strongly impacted by the redistributive behavior of whites. Findings lead to the conclusion that Atlanta remains a highly segregated, albeit increasingly diverse, urban region.

Los paisajes residenciales a traves del sur urbano han sido significativamente alterados en los ultimos anos por la creciente diversidad racial y etnica evidente en toda la region. Atlanta, Georgia representa una region urbana que recientemente ha sido identificada como una nueva puerta de entrada de inmigrantes, al haberse convertido en el hogar de una amplia gama de comunidades etnicas atraida al crecimiento y la diversificacion del mercado de trabajo de esta area. Este estudio investiga el impacto que el incremento de diversidad ha tenido en los niveles de segregacion residencial entre grupos raciales y/o etnicos en el nucleo de la region de Atlanta desde 1990 a 2010. El analisis empirico incluyo la medida de dos dimensiones de segregacion evidente entre los blancos no hispanos, los afroamericanos, los hispanos y los asiaticos. Las medidas de segregacion residencial se separaron para investigar los impactos relativos del cambio de composicion en toda la region y del cambio redistributivo intra-urbano sobre la segregacion entre los cuatro grupos. Durante las dos decadas, Atlanta exhibio muy modestas formas de integracion residencial, sin embargo, en algunos contextos la region realmente se volvio mas segregada en areas residenciales. Los resultados sugieren que los blancos no hispanos, los asiaticos y los hispanos exhibieron cierto grado de auto-selectividad etnica (o racial) que sirvio para concentrar estos grupos en areas residenciales, aunque estas fuerzas fueron parcialmente anuladas por otras que operaban a escala metropolitana y de vecindad. La evidencia ademas sugiere que las experiencias residenciales entre las minorias se vieron fuertemente impactadas por el comportamiento redistributivo de los blancos. Los resultados llevan a la conclusion de que Atlanta continua siendo una region urbana altamente segregada, aunque cada vez mas diversa.

KEY WORDS: Race, ethnicity, residential segregation, diversity

PALABRAS CLAVE: Raza, etnicidad, segregacion residencial, diversidad

INTRODUCTION

Considerable political controversy was generated in 2013 when the U.S. Supreme Court, in Shelby County vs. Holder (2013), struck down Section 4(b) of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, a landmark piece of national legislation that prohibits discrimination in voting. The implications of this decision will be strongly felt throughout the South, the region possessing the historical legacy of a system of racial segregation that generated the initial motivation for the host of civil rights legislation that included the Voting Rights Act. …

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