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This paper proposes a new spatial ordering index that that can be used to quantify the dependence of a given pattern of income segregation on the spatial arrangement of neighborhoods. Unlike other spatial measures of income segregation proposed in the literature, the spatial ordering index is less sensitive to the presence of outliers, satisfies the “principle of transfers,” and is flexible enough to quantify a variety of spatial patterns of segregation. The index can be interpreted in terms of the ratio of two covariances. Properties of the proposed measure are demonstrated using an example from the city of Baltimore, Maryland.

Keywords: C31 Cross-Sectional Models; R12 Size and Spatial Distributions of Regional Economic Activity; R14 Land Use Patterns; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: School of Public and International Affairs, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, 301 Architecture Annex, Blacksburg, Virginia 24061., Email:

Publication date: 2007-05-01

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