Ethnic geography: Measurement and evidence

Item Type Journal paper
Abstract We know little about how ethnic geography, i.e., the distribution of ethnic groups across space, shapes comparative economic, political and social development. To make progress and to harness the growing availability of spatially explicit data, we need indices summarizing key aspects of ethnic geography. We develop and axiomatize a novel index of ethnic segregation that takes both ethnic and spatial distances between individuals into account. We can decompose this index into indices of generalized ethnic fractionalization, spatial dispersion, and the alignment of spatial and ethnic distances. For our application, we compute different country-level versions of the segregation index and its components based on either ethnographic maps or geo-referenced survey data. Reassuringly, the different versions of the segregation index are highly correlated. We explore the relation of our indices to (i) existing measures of ethnic segregation and diversity; (ii) climatic and geographical factors; and (iii) the quality of government, economic development, and trust.
Authors Hodler, Roland; Valsecchi, Michele & Vesperoni, Alberto
Journal or Publication Title Journal of Public Economics
Language English
Keywords Measurement theory, Ethnic diversity, Ethnic geography, Segregation, Fractionalization, Comparative development
Subjects economics
social sciences
political science
HSG Classification contribution to scientific community
HSG Profile Area SEPS - Economic Policy
Refereed Yes
Date 1 August 2021
Publisher Elsevier
Volume 200
Number 104446
Number of Pages 14
ISSN 0047-2727
Depositing User Prof. Dr. Roland Hodler
Date Deposited 20 Jul 2021 12:34
Last Modified 01 Apr 2023 00:26


Full text not available from this repository.


Hodler, Roland; Valsecchi, Michele & Vesperoni, Alberto (2021) Ethnic geography: Measurement and evidence. Journal of Public Economics, 200 (104446). ISSN 0047-2727

Edit item Edit item