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Trends and Patterns in Intergenerational Mobility in Education (with Jason Fletcher). Journal of Human Capital. 2020.

High Schools and Educational Mobility (with Jason Fletcher). Review of Social Stratification and Mobility. 2021.

Parental Involvement and Neighborhood Quality: Evidence from Public Housing Demolitions in Chicago. Review of Economics of the Household. 2022.

Work in Progress

The Lasting Impact of Historical Redlining on Experienced Segregation (with Daniel Aaronson, Daniel Hartley and Bhashkar Mazumder). [abstract]

Gasoline Prices and Income Disparities in Daily Travel Patterns (with Noli Brazil). [abstract]

The Lasting Impact of Historical Redlining on Experienced Segregation


This paper studies the impact of the 1930s HOLC redlining maps on experienced segregation measured via travel patterns. Using cell phone traffic data, we analyze visits from each home neighborhood to non-residential points of interest. Our analysis relies on comparing adjacent redlined and non-redlined home neighborhoods using a sample of redlining borders which, based on estimated propensity scores, are likely to have been drawn idiosyncratically. Neighborhoods on the redlined side of the border are associated with more visits to other historically redlined destination neighborhoods. In the present day, these destination neighborhoods tend to be lower in household income and, in some cases, lower in education level. We find that differing work locations and visits to nearby neighborhoods cannot account for these disparities, and we find similar patterns of disparities for incoming visits. Observable measures of neighborhood composition can, at best, partially account for these results. We also study the impact of redlining maps on non-residential segregation at the city level, based on a comparison of cities around a population cutoff that determined whether a city was redlined or not. Using transition matrices, we describe visit probabilities across the distribution of home and destination neighborhood incomes. In cities with redlining maps, visits across neighborhood income lines are less common, but this effect is less pronounced for the richest home neighborhoods. These findings suggest that historical redlining affects non-residential segregation and the social interactions on urban residents in the present day.

Gasoline Prices and Income Disparities in Daily Travel Patterns

We study the impact of gas price fluctuations on daily travel patterns, for 10 major cities in the U.S. Our focus is on differential impacts by neighborhood income. We merge gas price data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration with cellphone traffic data from Safegraph, for the period  from March 2018 to May 2021. Our descriptive regressions reveal opposite patterns before vs. during the COVID pandemic. During the pre-pandemic period, high gas prices are associated with reductions in the outgoing visit frequency gap between high-income and low-income neighborhoods. During the peak pandemic period, this pattern reverses. After accounting for changes in mean distance to destinations, we find similar results for a measure of mileage. We supplement these findings with an analysis of the short-run impact of changes to state gas tax rates, which affected three cities in our sample. We find increases in gas tax rate consistently widen the neighborhood income gap in mean distance, with ambiguous effects on the visit frequency gap. We discuss potential explanations for these discrepancies.

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