Migration patterns and the growth of high-poverty neighborhoods, 1970-1990

Lincoln Quillian*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

155 Scopus citations


Using geocoded data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, this article examines why the number of high-poverty neighborhoods in American cities has increased since 1970. The main findings are (1) the migration of the nonpoor away from moderately poor neighborhoods has been a key process in forming new high-poverty neighborhoods, although in the early 1980s increasing poverty rates were also important; and (2) African-Americans have moved into predominately white neighborhoods at a pace sufficient to increase their numbers there, but neighborhoods with increasing black populations tend to lose white population rapidly. Implications for theories of poor neighborhoods are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-37
Number of pages37
JournalAmerican Journal of Sociology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science


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