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Journal of Geographical Systems

, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp 77–101 | Cite as

Latent lifestyle preferences and household location decisions

  • Joan L. Walker
  • Jieping Li
Original Article

Abstract

Lifestyle, indicating preferences towards a particular way of living, is a key driver of the decision of where to live. We employ latent class choice models to represent this behavior, where the latent classes are the lifestyles and the choice model is the choice of residential location. Thus, we simultaneously estimate lifestyle groups and how lifestyle impacts location decisions. Empirical results indicate three latent lifestyle segments: suburban dwellers, urban dwellers, and transit-riders. The suggested lifestyle segments have intriguing policy implications. Lifecycle characteristics are used to predict lifestyle preferences, although there remain significant aspects that cannot be explained by observable variables.

Keywords

Lifestyle Residential location Latent class choice models Mixture models Error components Neighborhood preferences 

Notes

Acknowledgments

The authors gratefully acknowledge useful interactions with Pat Mokhtarian (who provided, among other things, particularly insightful comments on the policy implications), Antonio Páez, Darren Scott, two anonymous reviewers, and participants at a UC Davis seminar and the 52nd North American Regional Science Association International Conference in Las Vegas, Nevada.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Geography and EnvironmentBoston UniversityBostonUSA

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