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Patterns of socioeconomic segregation and mix in the capital cities of fast-track reforming post-socialist countries
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2015 (English)In: Annals of the Association of American Geographers, ISSN 0004-5608, E-ISSN 1467-8306, Vol. 105, no 1, 183-202 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Socioeconomic disparities have been rising on both sides of the Atlantic for the last forty years. This study illuminates the relationship among economic inequality, other contextual and institutional factors, and socioeconomic intraurban segregation in Eastern Europe. We draw our empirical evidence from the capital cities of so-called fast-track reforming postsocialist countries: Estonia, Hungary, Lithuania, Poland, and the Czech Republic. The analysis consists of two stages. First, we use the traditional indexes of segregation to assess the global levels of socioeconomic segregation in the case cities. Second, we investigate the global patterns and local geographies of socioeconomic residential intermixing and introduce a typology of neighborhoods based on the socio-occupational composition of their residential tracts. Despite rapidly growing income inequality, the levels of socioeconomic segregation in the postsocialist city are either low or very low. The scale of segregation differs between the cities and the patterns of residential intermixing in the large cities of central and Eastern Europe are fundamentally different from those found in the Baltic states. The results lead to two important conclusions. One is that the link between socioeconomic distance and spatial distance in postsocialist cities is moderately sensitive to the level of economic inequality and to other contributory factors. The other key finding is that inertia effects have offset the immediate catalyzing effect of economic liberalization, globalization, and growing socioeconomic inequality on the patterns of segregation, at least in the first decade after the collapse of socialism.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 105, no 1, 183-202 p.
National Category
Social Sciences Human Geography
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-241015DOI: 10.1080/00045608.2014.968977OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-241015DiVA: diva2:777473
Available from: 2015-01-08 Created: 2015-01-08 Last updated: 2016-08-30Bibliographically approved

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Kährik, Anneli
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Institute for Housing and Urban Research
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