Spatial Analysis of Urban Fabric: Social Climate and Crime in Place-Based Context

Authors: Yunwoo Nam*, University Of Nebraska - Lincoln
Topics: Urban and Regional Planning, Urban Geography, Geographic Information Science and Systems
Keywords: Community development, social capital, civic participation, political participation, social environment, crime, place based neighborhood outcome
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/7/2019
Start / End Time: 9:55 AM / 11:35 AM
Room: Wilson B, Marriott, Mezzanine Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


While there are various factors that matter with spatial variations of neighborhood inequalities in an urban area, this study is particularly interested in social capital related outcomes and their impact on crime. Social capital has been applied in a variety of contexts to explain the ability of a community to solve the problem of collective action. The spatial dimension of social capital arises from the fact that their value and the way they are valuable to an individual depends on the physical distance. Social ties/networks may be restricted by the geographic location. Thus social capital is location specific. The paper examines the interconnectedness and spatial dynamics among social capital, civic participation and crime, using GIS and statistical models. The research question is “Do social capital and civic participation contribute to neighborhood outcome (i.e, lower crime rate)?” In doing so, we propose and examine effectiveness of novel measures of social capital related neighborhood outcomes. The spatial dynamics of social indicators are analyzed at a finer level of analysis such as parcel and street level. The fast development of GIS removes former barriers to increasing spatial resolution, and the improvement of statistical modeling supports spatial data analysis of the research to be better worked. For empirical testing, SEM and Path models are utilized. The findings show that place based social capital and civic participation are strongly associated with spatial variation of neighborhood outcome - crime. To identify implication for public policy, the paper discusses environmental strategies to promote positive social effects.

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