"Re-Assessing the Spatial Mismatch Hypothesis" - Jesse Rothstein, University of California, Berkeley

Apr 15, 1:20 pm2:35 pm


Event Description

Jesse Rothstein is the Carmel P. Friesen Professor of Public Policy & Professor of Economics at the University of California, Berkeley. His research focuses on education and tax policy, and particularly on the way that public institutions ameliorate or reinforce the effects of children’s families on their academic and economic outcomes.


Using LEHD data, we demonstrate several facts that are not consistent with the "spatial mismatch" hypothesis that residential segregation and uneven distribution of jobs limits Black workers’ opportunities. We show that (a) there is no Black-white gap in the firm premium component of wages in an Abowd-Kramarz-Margolis wage decomposition; (b) there are both more jobs and more good jobs within commuting distance of Black than white workers; and (c) Black workers’ commutes are shorter. We conclude that geographic proximity to good jobs is not a major source of racial earnings gaps in major U.S. cities today.