Understanding Changes in the Geography of Opportunity
Several pieces of research have been generated aimed at describing the geography of opportunity (GO) in metropolitan areas. However, little attention has been paid to the private and public-sector actions as part of the opportunities that are present in an urban areas as well as forces of urban change. Thus, this research proposes a methodology to measure the GO that not only depicts the set of opportunities individuals find in their place of residence but also encompasses the analysis of the land market and real estate investment and the local government fiscal capacity.
This paper offers an analysis of the geography of opportunity of Santiago Metropolitan Area (SMA) and its changes over time at the municipal and neighborhood scale using a multidimensional index compound by three sub-indices aimed at describing the geography of opportunity in a comprehensive way. The three indices generated capture the urban dynamics and urban context to which individuals are exposed to. These indices, both separately and together, allow capturing the set of opportunities that individuals find in their place of residence as well as monitor and compare changes in the GO over time.
The results show that the GO in Santiago Metropolitan Region is expanding. The great majority of the municipalities (21 de 34) has experienced positive changes in its GO in the 10 years in this research. Furthermore, the data also showed that the SMA host at least three type of cities. First, a city that shows high persistence in high GO. Second, a city that shows high persistence in low GO. And third, a city that is mutating and changing its GO with different levels of intensity (many of them moving up in the GO index categories, while few moving down) These most dynamic areas are those where the levels of social inclusion show better prospects.