It’s Not Just Welfare: Racial Inequality and the Local Provision of Public Goods in the United States

Brian An, Morris Levy, Rodney Hero

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

Recent research shows that inequality between racial groups is a critical determinant of redistributive policy in the United States. Using various measures of local and state spending and examining multiple levels of geographical and political jurisdictions, we extend this research to government spending on local public goods. Specifically, we examine (1) whether the extent to which income inequality falls along racial lines dampens local and state government spending on public goods, (2) which types of public goods are most affected by the racial structure of inequality, and (3) whether political variables such as local leaders’ racial identities and party affiliation mediate the relationship between racial inequality and spending on public goods. The findings reaffirm the need to consider racial diversity and inequality jointly as influences on policy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)833-865
Number of pages33
JournalUrban Affairs Review
Volume54
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2018

Keywords

  • diversity
  • income inequality
  • local public goods
  • racial inequality
  • urban politics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Urban Studies

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