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Space and Exclusion: The relationship between physical segregation, economic marginalisation and poverty in the city

Vaughan, L; Clark, DLC; Sahbaz, O; (2005) Space and Exclusion: The relationship between physical segregation, economic marginalisation and poverty in the city. In: van Nes, A, (ed.) (Proceedings) 5th International Space Syntax Symposium. (pp. pp. 379-394). TU Delft: Delft. Green open access

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Abstract

There has recently been a growing interest in the spatial causes of poverty, particularly in the processes involved in the formation of poverty areas within cities. Most research has concentrated on the social causes of poverty, crime and social malaise and there is a lack of fundamental research into the relationship between urban morphology and the spatialisation of poverty. This paper aims to address this deficiency. This paper describes research conducted for an EPSRC project called “Space and Exclusion”, which aims to investigate the relationship between physical segregation and economic marginalisation in the city, focusing on 19th century and contemporary London. By using a GIS system to layer historical spatial and poverty data along with contemporary deprivation indexes and space syntax measures of segregation, this paper presents findings on underlying spatial effects which influence the spatial distribution of poverty, investigates these effects on immigrants in particular, and maps the development of “poverty areas” over time. The paper also describes the methods used to model the range of data sources, which included the data derived from the Charles Booth maps of London Poverty 1889 and 1899; using a variety of the latest advances in space syntax methods, such as segment analysis, which is a finer form analysis than the traditional axial map that analyses the line segment between junctions. This means that the axial analysis measures of Radius 3 integration, Radius n integration and so on can be supplemented with measures relating to the spatial integration of the street segment. Moreover, metric distance, least angle distance can be analysed, as well as – what was vital for the project discussed here – analysing the relationship between these spatial measures and social data that varies along a single axial line. The authors’ findings relate to the socio-spatial structure of historical London, and pave the way for a comparative spatial model for examining the distribution of poverty in contemporary urban situations. The paper demonstrates that individuals marginalized socially or economically follow distinctive patterns of settlement and that underlying these patterns were spatial conditions that may have influenced this distribution. For example, space syntax analysis suggests that Booth’s London was not well integrated on a North-South axis, resulting in a split between East-West encounters, which was reflected in an East-West prosperity/poverty divide. It examines some of the more localised poverty areas and the effects that slum clearance had on the surrounding neighbourhoods of the London cityscape. Often, interruptions to the grid structure significantly influenced the spatial configuration of a poverty area, giving rise to conditions of spatial and social segregation. This paper concludes that the urban structure itself can influence the economic conditions for segregation. Poorer classes are often disadvantaged by being marginalized spatially, and the formation of poor areas is the outcome of a complex socio-spatial process, which can be further influenced by the impact of immigrants to an area.

Type: Proceedings paper
Title: Space and Exclusion: The relationship between physical segregation, economic marginalisation and poverty in the city
Event: 5th International Space Syntax Symposium
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Keywords: Charles Booth, GIS, poverty data, urban morphology, street-scale, configuration
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > The Bartlett School of Architecture
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/675
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