Journal of Urban and Regional Analysis

Volume 2, Number 2, 2010


Special Issue: “Bridging Diversity in a Globalizing World” Selected Papers given at the IGU - Urban Commission Meeting Regional Conference, July 2010, Tel Aviv, Israel

Guest editor: Izhak Schnell, Tel Aviv University, Israel



Itzhak Omer


Residential differentiation at two geographic scales – the metropolitan area and the city: the case of Tel Aviv 



The research of residential differentiation in cities is concentrated on one geographic scale such as metropolitan areas, cities, or counties. As a result, we have relatively little information regarding the extent of residential differentiation and its spatial pattern at different geographic scales. This paper examines the residential differentiation within the socio-spatial structure of the Tel Aviv metropolitan area as it was in 1995. The analysis is conducted at two geographic scales. The first analyzes the entire metropolitan area as one spatial entity; the second examines the 22 cities located within that area. We applied the method of classical factorial social ecology to investigate residential differentiation along the social dimensions of ethnicity, socio-economic status and family status (stage in the family life cycle) in their spatial expression at the metropolitan and city geographic scales. The findings indicated that residential differentiation in the metropolitan area and in cities tends to be dominated by the ethnic dimension, which is most closely associated with the socio-economic dimension. The relative independence of family status enables the formation of socially diverse residential areas which are often organized in nearly a sectoral-concentric pattern. In general, residential differentiation was more significant at the geographic scale of cities.


Key Words: factorial social ecology, residential differentiation, geographic scale, ethnicity, Tel Aviv metropolitan area.


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