Neighbourhood selection of non-western ethnic minorities

Testing the own-group effects hypothesis using a conditional logit model


  • Sanne Boschman TU Delft, Architecture and the Built Environment
  • Maarten van Ham TU Delft, Architecture and the Built Environment


segregation, neighbourhood selection, ethnicity, own-group preference, conditional logit


The selective inflow and outflow of residents by ethnicity is the main mechanism behind ethnic residential segregation. Many studies have found that ethnic minorities are more likely than others to move to ethnic minority concentration neighbourhoods. An important question which remains largely unanswered is whether this can be explained by own group effects, including own group preferences, or by other neighbourhood factors. We use unique longitudinal register data from the Netherlands, which allows us to distinguish between different ethnic minority groups and to simultaneously take into account multiple neighbourhood characteristics. This allows us to test own group effects; the effect of the share of the own ethnic group on neighbourhood selection, while also taking into account other neighbourhood characteristics such as the housing market composition. Using a conditional logit model we find that housing market constraints can partly explain the moves of ethnic minorities to minority concentration neighbourhoods. Also own-group effects are found to be important in explaining neighbourhood selection. There are, however, important differences between ethnic minority groups. While these effects together explain why Surinamese and Antilleans move to minority concentration neighbourhoods, Turks and Moroccans are still found to move to concentration neighbourhoods of minorities other than their own ethnic group.