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Recasting Research on ‘Neighbourhood effects’: A Collaborative, Participatory, Trans-National Approach

  • Michael Darcy
  • Gabrielle Gwyther
Chapter

Abstract

This chapter critiques some of the dominant discourses of place and disadvantage as well as their epistemology. The current attention given to neighbourhood effects is seen as part of a larger ‘spatial turn’ in social science, which attempts to explain the disadvantage of poor households concentrated in poor neighbourhoods. The chapter critiques the ‘culture of poverty explanation’ of disadvantage and the associated policy response of de-concentrating poverty through the creation of mixed income neighbourhoods. It is argued that if there is little evidence in support of neighbourhood effects in the first place, then creating mixed neighbourhoods will lead to little benefit for the neighbourhood residents, a large proportion of who will be displaced as a result of the policy. The chapter further critiques quantitative research for ignoring the voice and perspectives of neighbourhood residents. It distances itself completely from positivist epistemology by proposing an alternative approach based on phenomenological epistemology and participatory action research. This alternative approach is based on a ‘collaborative university – community research’ design to understand residents’ perspectives of their neighbourhood and concentrated public housing and the policy proposals for mixed housing in Australia.

Keywords

Social Capital Public Housing Neighbourhood Effect Disadvantaged Neighbourhood Concentrate Disadvantage 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Social SciencesUniversity of Western SydneyPenrithAustralia

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