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Ethnic Discrimination in the Rental Housing Market: An Experiment in New Caledonia

Abstract : This study focuses on the links between ethnic discrimination, housing discrimination, and the ethnic composition of neighborhoods at a specific spatial level, that of the city quarter. Our goal is to determine whether discrimination exacerbates residential segregation. We measure discrimination and access to housing in Greater Nouméa, the capital of New Caledonia, by ethnic background, distinguishing between the people of Kanak (the indigenous people) and those of European descent. Between October 2015 and February 2016, four applicants individually responded to 342 real-estate rental ads, made a total of 1,368 responses. Two of the applicants made their Kanak origin known through their surnames, while two others similarly made their European origin known. In each pairing, an applicant signaled financial and professional stability by explicitly indicating that he was a civil servant. A particularity of the study was to analyze these data statistically by crossing it with the ethnic distribution of neighborhoods. Severe discrimination regarding access to private rental housing for Kanak applicants in all neighborhoods was found. Signaling stability strongly reduced discrimination against Kanak applicants. This discrimination is linked to the behavior of landlords and, to a lesser extent, to the actions of real-estate agencies. The difficulties accessing housing are solely due to discrimination linked to the social precariousness of Kanaks in neighborhoods where Kanaks are most represented. They are also linked to ethnic discrimination against Kanaks in neighborhoods dominated by Europeans. Housing providers thus play an active role in residential segregation.
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Soumis le : mardi 28 janvier 2020 - 20:53:33
Dernière modification le : dimanche 26 juin 2022 - 13:43:50


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Mathieu Bunel, Samuel Gorohouna, Yannick L'Horty, Pascale Petit, Catherine Ris. Ethnic Discrimination in the Rental Housing Market: An Experiment in New Caledonia. International Regional Science Review, 2017, 42 (1), pp.65-97. ⟨10.1177/0160017617739065⟩. ⟨hal-02458685⟩



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