Ethnic differences in realising desires to leave urban neighbourhoods

Sanne Boschman*, Reinout Kleinhans, Maarten van Ham

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    7 Citations (Scopus)


    Selective mobility into and out of urban neighbourhoods is one of the main driving forces of segregation. Earlier research has found group differences in who wants to leave or who leaves certain types of neighbourhoods. A factor that has received little attention so far is that some residents will have a desire to leave their neighbourhood, but are unable to do so. If there are differences between population groups in the realisation of desires to leave the neighbourhood, this might lead to involuntary segregation. This paper uses a unique combination of register data and survey data. We combine data from a large housing survey in the Netherlands (WoON) with longitudinal register data from the Netherlands (SSD) which contains individual-level information on residential mobility histories. This allows us to study whether households with a desire to leave their neighbourhood do realise this desire and which households are successful in leaving which neighbourhoods. A more thorough insight in who wants to leave which neighbourhoods but is unable to do so will contribute to a better understanding of selective mobility and segregation. We find that ethnic minorities and low-income households are less likely to realise a desire to leave their neighbourhood. We expected that ethnic minorities would be especially unsuccessful in realising desires to leave minority concentration neighbourhoods; however, for none of the ethnic groups we found an effect of neighbourhood ethnic composition on the realisation of desires to leave.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)495-512
    Number of pages18
    JournalJournal of Housing and the Built Environment
    Issue number3
    Early online date9 Aug 2016
    Publication statusPublished - Sept 2017


    • Ethnic minorities
    • Moving desires
    • Neighbourhoods
    • Segregation
    • Selective mobility


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