School Desegregation and Urban Change: Evidence from City Boundaries
I examine changes in the city-suburban housing price gap in metropolitan areas with and without court-ordered desegregation plans over the 1970s, narrowing my comparison to housing units on opposite sides of district boundaries. The desegregation of public schools in central cities reduced the demand for urban residence, leading urban housing prices and rents to decline by six percent relative to neighboring suburbs. The aversion to integration was due both to changes in peer composition and to student reassignment to non-neighborhood schools. The associated reduction in the urban tax base imposed a fiscal externality on remaining urban residents.
Matthew Baird, Lilia Garcia, David Lee and Angelina Morris provided excellent research assistance. Sarah Reber, Wendy Thomas and Dave Van Riper generously assisted with aspects of the data collection. I gratefully acknowledge financial support from the Center for American Politics and Public Policy and the California Center for Population Research, both at UCLA. I enjoyed productive conversations with Joshua Angrist, Nathaniel Baum-Snow, Sandra Black, David Figlio, Claudia Goldin, Lawrence Katz, Robert Margo, Douglas Miller, Sarah Reber and seminar participants at MIT, NBER Economics of Education program meeting, Society of Labor Economists, University of Arizona, UC-Davis, University of Kansas and the KALER group at UCLA. The views expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Bureau of Economic Research.
- School desegregation orders reduced the value of urban houses relative to houses in neighboring suburbs by almost 6 percent. In...
Leah Platt Boustan, 2012. "School Desegregation and Urban Change: Evidence from City Boundaries," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 4(1), pages 85-108, January. citation courtesy of