Evaluating Evidence of Discrimination in Multi-Ethnic Housing Markets
William A.V. Clark, University of California, Los Angeles
Peter A. Morrison, RAND
This paper considers a question of growing importance – how to detect or rule out discrimination as the cause of ethnic residential separation in multi-ethnic housing markets. As housing markets diversify, accompanying spatial patterns can arouse perceptions of discrimination. How can we know if patterns of residential separation in the urban fabric are the outcomes of discriminatory practices? Clarifying what constitutes discrimination, and ascertaining evidence of unlawful discriminatory practices within these markets, poses new challenges for applied demographers. We examine an instance where an observed disparity viewed as a tell-tale sign of discrimination was instead the product of market forces. Our paper underscores the need for detailed analysis and careful interpretation of ethnic residential separation in multi-ethnic housing markets.
Presented in Session 88: New Directions in Applied Demography