Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Deprived neighbourhoods in transition: Divergent pathways of change in the Greater Manchester city-region

an article by Stephen Hincks (University of Manchester, UK) published in Urban Studies Volume 54 Issue 4 (March 2017)


Many studies of neighbourhood change adopt a ‘bookend’ mode of analysis in which a baseline year is identified for a chosen outcome variable from which the magnitude of change is calculated to a determined endpoint typically over bi-decadal or decadal timeframes.

However, this mode of analysis smoothes away short-run change patterns and neighbourhood dynamics.

The implications of this practice could be far reaching if it is accepted that as neighbourhoods change they are liable to cross a threshold and transition from one state to another in the short- as well as longer-term.

In a case study of deprived neighbourhoods in the Greater Manchester city-region, this paper aims to contribute to neighbourhood change debates in two ways.

The first is by isolating transition pathways for individual neighbourhoods using annual change data.

The second is by testing the thesis that the more deprived a neighbourhood is, the more likely it is to respond with greater volatility to short-run shocks when compared with less-deprived neighbourhoods.

Four indicators collected annually between 2001 and 2010 are used to develop a typology of neighbourhood change and a subsequent typology of neighbourhood transition. The analysis exposed 260 different transition pathways that deprived neighbourhoods followed over the study period.

Multinomial logistic regression was then used to determine the odds of a neighbourhood undergoing transition along a specific pathway owing to its level of deprivation. The model revealed that the most deprived neighbourhoods were likely to follow more volatile transition pathways compared with the less-deprived neighbourhoods especially during periods of economic difficulty.

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