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Internal Migration Flows and Residential Segregation in Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations. Gemma Catney PhD Research Student Centre for Spatial Territorial Analysis and Research (C-STAR) School of Geography, Archaeology and Palaeoecology (GAP)

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Internal Migration Flows and Residential Segregation in Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

Gemma Catney

PhD Research Student

Centre for Spatial Territorial Analysis and Research (C-STAR)

School of Geography, Archaeology and Palaeoecology (GAP)

Queen’s University, Belfast

3rd International Population Geographies Conference, Liverpool 2006


Residential segregation in northern ireland
Residential Segregation in Northern Ireland Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

  • Religious residential segregation in NI – media and academic research

  • New academic research pointing towards residential segregation as either decreasing or staying the same

  • However, large geographic variations, with some increases in segregation in particular areas, and persistence in others

  • But why?


Internal migration in northern ireland
Internal migration in Northern Ireland Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

  • In-situ growth vs. migration

  • Simpson (2004), in Urban Studies

  • Migration – reinforcement, erosion, creation of residential segregation?

  • How far is community background (area composition, etc.) important in migration decision-making?

  • Under-explored and little understood


Presentation outline
Presentation outline Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

  • Methodology

  • Quantitative research

    • Migration rates

    • GWR

  • Qualitative research

    • Area selection

    • Interviews and focus groups

    • Cognitive mapping

    • 2 case study areas

  • Summary and conclusions


Methodology
Methodology Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

QUANTITATIVE

Migration rates

Geographically weighted regression (GWR)

SI modelling

DATA SOURCES

Census of pop. of NI (2001)

Census grid square data (1971-2001)

Residents (movers and non-movers)

Key informants (community reps, property developers, etc.)

Estate agents

QUALITATIVE

Semi-structured interviews

Focus groups

Cognitive

Mapping

Participant observation


Migration rates
Migration rates Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

Inflow rate (per 1000 pop.)

Outflow rate (per 1000 pop.)


Migration by community background
Migration by community background Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

Catholic inflow over total inflow

Catholic outflow over total outflow


Geographically weighted regression gwr
Geographically weighted regression (GWR) Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

Catholic residential composition against Catholic inflow, as proportion of total inflow (12km bandwidth)


Summary
Summary Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

  • Community background potentially very significant

  • Suggests reinforcement of residential segregation due to migration, in some places

  • But, a complex picture…


Qualitative research
Qualitative research Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

  • Semi-structured interviews with:

    • residents of case study areas (movers and non-movers)

    • key informants – property developers, community representatives, etc.

  • Focus groups (and cognitive mapping exercise) with:

    • residents of case study areas (movers and non-movers)

  • Also, participant observation with estate agencies


Area selection
Area selection Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

  • Interviewing in 6 case study areas as a basis for understanding case-specific and general processes and trends

  • Areas controlled for by:

    • Community background

    • Socioeconomic class (including tenure)

    • Location (inner city, middle city, suburban and near-rural)

  • A ‘representative’ sample according to demographic composition of area


  • Case study areas
    Case study areas Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

    • A transect approach

    • South Belfast

    • Incorporates 6 areas with aforementioned characteristics, plus wider processes:

      • Suburbanisation and counterurbanisation

      • Inner city residualisation

      • Inner city gentrification

      • Decentralisation of Protestant communities

      • Possible life-course characteristics


    Transect south belfast
    Transect: South Belfast Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations


    Outline interviews
    Outline: Interviews Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

    • General context

    • 2 case study areas:

      • Middle city ‘mixed’ area

      • Inner city Protestant community

    • General / ‘universal’ trends


    Area 1 ballynafeigh
    Area 1: Ballynafeigh Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

    • Middle city, ‘mixed’ community

    • 1990s – mixed, with a slight Protestant majority

    • Present – mixed status under-threat, with an increasing Catholic majority and decreases in Protestants

    • Predominantly middle class

    • Becoming more affluent

    • Development – apartment blocks (gentrifying)


    Area 1 ballynafeigh1
    Area 1: Ballynafeigh Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

    • Recruitment: Community facilitator and ‘For Sale’ & ‘To Let’ signs

    • Recurring themes:

      • Reputation as a mixed community important – in-migration of couples in mixed marriages

      • Graduates from the two universities (and some current students)

      • Starter homes for middle classes

      • Familiarity – either student near by, grew up in area, personal contacts

      • Perception that it is becoming more Catholic due to recent in-migration


    Area 1 ballynafeigh2
    Area 1: Ballynafeigh Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

    • Some ‘cashing in’ on rising house prices and selling up

    • Out-migration (actual and hypothetical) tends to be to suburbs and rural areas – growing families wanting more quiet settings, a garden, less desire to be so close to the city centre, etc.

    • Area choice tends to be:

      • middle class

      • mixed (community background)

      • generally would not consider homogenous areas, but if would is always the ‘same side’ - safety


    Area 2 donegall pass
    Area 2: Donegall Pass Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

    • Inner city Protestant (Loyalist) area

    • Predominantly working class

    • ‘Typical’ of working class Protestant communities – under threat, with a loss of population

    • Lack of suitable housing (social)

    • Decline in services and amenities

    • Gentrified from all sides – feeling ‘squeezed’


    Area 2 donegall pass1
    Area 2: Donegall Pass Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

    • Recruitment: Community facilitator, focus groups and other contacts

    • Recurring themes:

      • For most, want to stay – lots of intra-area movement

      • Substantial out-migration due to shortage of suitable housing (Housing Executive)

      • Some ‘cashing in’ on rising house prices and selling up (mostly bought through RTB)


    Area 2 donegall pass2
    Area 2: Donegall Pass Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

    • But few choose to move if can stay – mostly movement for space – migration a huge event: “[Moving was] like a death in the family…it was really really hard…still is” (Protestant female, mid-40s)

    • Retention of networks and contacts

    • Movement tends to be highly segregated – Protestants in, and movement out to Protestant areas – same with hypothetical area choice

    • Reinforced by those selling homes – advice to viewers

    • Housing Executive area choice – both choice and offered


    General universal trends
    General/ ‘universal’ trends Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

    Reasons why move:

    • Dissatisfaction with current area/ property

    • More space

    • Garden

    • Closer to work

    • Closer to sick/ elderly relative

    • Health reasons

    • ‘Up and out’

    • Intimidation


    General universal trends1
    General/ ‘universal’ trends Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

    Factors considered when do move/ have moved:

    • Familiarity – family ties, friends, where grew up, work, etc.

    • Most search few areas and few properties – fairly fixed ideas about ‘acceptable’ or not

    • Composition of the area (religion/ community background) a factor in most individuals’ decisions:

      • Fear / safety

      • Sectarianism


    General universal trends2
    General/ ‘universal’ trends Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

    • This may be overt:

      “Completely Catholic areas. Because, I mean, I wouldn’t get a chance to live in it” (Protestant female, 40, Protestant area)

      “Idon’t think we would move into Loyalist areas…I mean, it stands to sense” (Catholic male, mid 20s, mixed area)

    • Or less direct

    • For those claiming religion was not an issue, still had firm views about areas to avoid – mainly highly segregated areas, both Nationalist and Loyalist, regardless of the religion of the interviewee


    General universal trends3
    General/ ‘universal’ trends Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

    • Most tend to consider areas of same ‘type’ as those already in – e.g. residents of working class areas choose working class areas – familiarity, horizons, but also more conscious – the ‘sense of community’.

    • However, for some, social aspirations come to the fore

    • Areas selected tended to be similar for individuals within each area

    • Some forced/ designed segregation – role of institutions


    Mapping exercise
    Mapping exercise Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

    • ‘Fixed’ views

      reinforced in the

      mapping

      exercise:

    • Area perceptions

      and residential

      desirability


    Summary1
    Summary Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

    • Themes which are area/case-specific and general

    • Reasons why people move tend to relate to ‘usual’ factors, plus NI effect

    • Area selection (real and hypothetical):

      • Familiarity

      • Similar ‘types’, plus some aspirations

      • Mixed, or ‘same side’

    • Potential reinforcement of segregation


    Conclusions
    Conclusions Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

    • Mixture of methods has led to a rich tapestry

    • Quantitative analysis points to a relationship between migration and residential segregation, although the picture is complex

    • Qualitative research shows that community background has a strong influence, although other factors are important

    • In addition to natural increase (in-situ growth), spatial reorganisation of the population is also having a major impact on changes in segregation


    Acknowledgements
    Acknowledgements Northern Ireland: Relations, Motivations and Geographical Variations

    • My supervisor, Dr Ian Shuttleworth, for his comments and advice

    • The participants in my interviews and focus groups

    • The community representatives, for their insight, and assistance in recruitment

    • Department for Employment and Learning (DEL), for funding

    • Contested Cities, Urban Universities (CU2) research team and funding body (European Programme Peace 2)


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