Urban sprawl and suburbanization’s negative effects on civic participation
Reed, Daniel Cochran
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In this thesis, I examine the negative effects that increased urban sprawl and the “suburbanization” of communities in America have had on the civic participation of individuals in its wake. I argue that the effect of suburbia and urban sprawl is the disruption of the patterns of social interaction present in the traditional “community,” which in turn hinders the ability of individuals to participate effectively in their communities. The results of my analysis suggest that different kinds of neighborhoods in which individuals grow up may affect later civic participation. Specifically, I find that the percentage of total businesses in a community which are “mom and pops” can positively affect later participation.