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Ethnicity and Homeownership in Montréal, Toronto and Vancouver: Measuring Effects of the Spatial Distribution of Ethnic Groups Using Multilevel Modeling in 1996 and 2001

  • Xavier Leloup
  • Philippe Apparicio
  • Fahimeh Delavar Esfahani
Article
  • 293 Downloads

Abstract

This article presents the results of an empirical study on the relationship between the spatial distribution of ethnic groups and their access to homeownership in the three largest Canadian cities. Firstly, we argue, based on former theoretical work, that ethnicity has partly been misleadingly conceptualized in previous research on housing and neighbourhood dynamics. Consequently, we also argue that ethnic affiliation has wrongly been included as an individual trait in previous research, whereas it is a characteristic that needs to be treated as a collective trait. Multilevel modeling is presented here as a helpful way to avoid the limitation of previous research on this specific issue. Secondly, we attempt to test certain hypotheses about the emergence of an “ethnic capital” in metropolitan regions where immigration and cultural diversity are rising. In order to achieve this goal, we estimate the relationship between various dimensions of ethnic segregation and the mean level of ownership. We also try to determine whether the aggregation of ethnic groups in urban space enhances the probability of their members having access to homeownership. Our study provides mixed results in regards to these hypotheses. The “assimilation theory” seems to be applicable in most cases, while some of our results also lead to the conclusion that when ethnic groups with a higher income level are concentrated in space, this can foster their ability to access homeownership.

Keywords

Homeownership Ethnic group Canada Multilevel modeling Segregation 

Résumé

Cet article présente les résultats d’une étude empirique sur la relation entre la distribution spatiale des groupes ethniques et leur accès à la propriété dans les trois plus grandes villes du Canada. En premier lieu, nous argumentons, sur la base de travaux théoriques antérieurs, que l’ethnicité a été partiellement mal conceptualisée dans les études sur le logement et les dynamiques de voisinage. Nous argumentons par conséquent que la variable ethnique a été incorrectement incorporée dans les études antérieures comme une caractéristique liée à l’individu, alors qu’il s’agit d’une variable qui doit être traitée d’abord en tant que caractéristique collective. L’usage des modèles multi niveaux est considéré comme un moyen efficace pour éviter les limites des études précédentes sur ce point spécifique. En second lieu, nous tentons de tester plusieurs hypothèses en lien avec l’émergence d’un capital ethnique dans les grandes villes où l’immigration et la diversité ethnoculturelle augmentent. Pour atteindre cet objectif, nous avons estimé la relation qui existe entre plusieurs dimensions de la ségrégation ethnoculturelle et le taux moyen de propriété. Nous avons aussi essayé de déterminer si l’agrégation des groupes ethniques dans l’espace urbain accroît la probabilité de leurs membres d’être propriétaires. Notre étude fournit des résultats mitigés au regard de ces différentes hypothèses. La théorie de l’assimilation semble en effet se vérifier dans la plupart des cas, même si une partie des résultats mènent à la conclusion que lorsqu’un groupe ethnique ayant des niveaux de revenu élevés se trouve concentrer dans l’espace, cela peut accroître sa capacité à accéder à la propriété.

Mots clés

propriété groupe ethnique Canada modélisation multi niveau ségrégation 

Notes

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to express their special thanks to Marie-Hélène Chastenay who read and corrected an early version of this text. The writing of this paper would not have been possible without her.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Xavier Leloup
    • 1
  • Philippe Apparicio
    • 1
  • Fahimeh Delavar Esfahani
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre—Urbanisation Culture SociétéInstitut national de la recherche scientifiqueMontréalCanada

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