Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Growing up in bad neighborhoods has a 'devastating' impact

05.10.2011
Growing up in a poor neighborhood significantly reduces the chances that a child will graduate from high school, according to a study published in the current (October) issue of the American Sociological Review. And the longer a child lives in that kind of neighborhood, the more harmful the impact.

The study by sociologists Geoffrey Wodtke and David Harding of the University of Michigan and Felix Elwert of the University of Wisconsin is the first to capture the cumulative impact of growing up in America's most disadvantaged neighborhoods on a key educational outcome: high school graduation.

"Compared to growing up in affluent neighborhoods, growing up in neighborhoods with high levels of poverty and unemployment reduces the chances of high school graduation from 96 percent to 76 percent for black children," said Wodtke, a doctoral student who works with Harding at the U-M Institute for Social Research (ISR). "The impact on white children is also harmful, but not as large, reducing their chances of graduating from 95 percent to 87 percent."

In contrast to earlier research that examined neighborhood effects on children at a single point in time, the new study uses data from the ISR Panel Study of Income Dynamics to follow 2,093 children from age 1 through age 17, assessing the neighborhoods in which they lived every year.

"We found that black and white children had starkly different patterns of exposure to bad neighborhoods over the long term," Wodtke said. "Black children were about seven times more likely than white children to experience long-term residence in the most disadvantaged 20 percent of neighborhoods."

For the study, the researchers defined disadvantaged neighborhoods as those characterized by high poverty, unemployment and welfare receipt, many female-headed households, and few well-educated adults.

"Our results indicate that sustained exposure to disadvantaged neighborhoods has a much greater negative impact on the chances a child will graduate from high school than earlier research has suggested," Wodtke said.

"The current findings demonstrate the importance of neighborhoods throughout childhood, and resonate with evidence from several other studies suggesting that residence in disadvantaged neighborhoods may have a negative effect on the cognitive development of children many years or even generations later," Harding said.

"And while our study does not speak to the efficacy of specific policy interventions needed to improve communities that have suffered decades of structural neglect, it seems likely that a lasting commitment to neighborhood improvement and income desegregation would be necessary to resolve the problems identified in our study."

Harding and Wodtke are also affiliated with the U-M Department of Sociology, part of the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts.

Established in 1949, the University of Michigan Institute for Social Research is the world's largest academic social science survey and research organization, and a world leader in developing and applying social science methodology, and in educating researchers and students from around the world. ISR conducts some of the most widely cited studies in the nation, including the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan Surveys of Consumers, the American National Election Studies, the Monitoring the Future Study, the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, the Health and Retirement Study, the Columbia County Longitudinal Study and the National Survey of Black Americans. ISR researchers also collaborate with social scientists in more than 60 nations on the World Values Surveys and other projects, and the institute has established formal ties with universities in Poland, China and South Africa. ISR is also home to the Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research, the world's largest digital social science data archive. For more information, visit the ISR website at www.isr.umich.edu.

Contact: Diane Swanbrow
Phone: (734) 647-4416

Diane Swanbrow | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.umich.edu

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Detecting mental and physical stress via smartphone
22.11.2019 | Politecnico di milano

nachricht Virtual "moonwalk" for science reveals distortions in spatial memory
18.11.2019 | Max-Planck-Institut für Kognitions- und Neurowissenschaften

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Machine learning microscope adapts lighting to improve diagnosis

Prototype microscope teaches itself the best illumination settings for diagnosing malaria

Engineers at Duke University have developed a microscope that adapts its lighting angles, colors and patterns while teaching itself the optimal...

Im Focus: Small particles, big effects: How graphene nanoparticles improve the resolution of microscopes

Conventional light microscopes cannot distinguish structures when they are separated by a distance smaller than, roughly, the wavelength of light. Superresolution microscopy, developed since the 1980s, lifts this limitation, using fluorescent moieties. Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research have now discovered that graphene nano-molecules can be used to improve this microscopy technique. These graphene nano-molecules offer a number of substantial advantages over the materials previously used, making superresolution microscopy even more versatile.

Microscopy is an important investigation method, in physics, biology, medicine, and many other sciences. However, it has one disadvantage: its resolution is...

Im Focus: Atoms don't like jumping rope

Nanooptical traps are a promising building block for quantum technologies. Austrian and German scientists have now removed an important obstacle to their practical use. They were able to show that a special form of mechanical vibration heats trapped particles in a very short time and knocks them out of the trap.

By controlling individual atoms, quantum properties can be investigated and made usable for technological applications. For about ten years, physicists have...

Im Focus: Images from NJIT's big bear solar observatory peel away layers of a stellar mystery

An international team of scientists, including three researchers from New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT), has shed new light on one of the central mysteries of solar physics: how energy from the Sun is transferred to the star's upper atmosphere, heating it to 1 million degrees Fahrenheit and higher in some regions, temperatures that are vastly hotter than the Sun's surface.

With new images from NJIT's Big Bear Solar Observatory (BBSO), the researchers have revealed in groundbreaking, granular detail what appears to be a likely...

Im Focus: New opportunities in additive manufacturing presented

Fraunhofer IFAM Dresden demonstrates manufacturing of copper components

The Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Technology and Advanced Materials IFAM in Dresden has succeeded in using Selective Electron Beam Melting (SEBM) to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

First International Conference on Agrophotovoltaics in August 2020

15.11.2019 | Event News

Laser Symposium on Electromobility in Aachen: trends for the mobility revolution

15.11.2019 | Event News

High entropy alloys for hot turbines and tireless metal-forming presses

05.11.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

Cohesin - a molecular motor that folds our genome

22.11.2019 | Life Sciences

Magnesium deprivation stops pathogen growth

22.11.2019 | Health and Medicine

Detecting mental and physical stress via smartphone

22.11.2019 | Studies and Analyses

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>