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Place-Based Policies: Opportunity for Deprived Schools or Zone-and-Shame Effect?

Manon Garrouste () and Miren Lafourcade
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Manon Garrouste: LEM - Lille économie management - UMR 9221 - UA - Université d'Artois - UCL - Université catholique de Lille - Université de Lille - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, IÉSEG School Of Management [Puteaux], Université de Lille, CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique

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Abstract: Even though place-based policies involve large transfers toward low-income neighborhoods, they may also produce territorial stigmatization. This paper appeals to the quasi-experimental discontinuity in a French reform that redrew the zoning map of subsidized neighborhoods on the basis of a sharp poverty cutoff to assess the effect of place-based policies on school enrollment into lower secondary education. Using a difference-indifferences approach, we find strong evidence of stigma from policy designation, as public middle schools in neighborhoods below the policy cutoff , which qualified for place-based subsidies, saw a significant 3.5pp post-reform drop in pupil enrollment, compared to their counterfactual analogues in unlabeled areas lying just above the poverty threshold. This "zone-and-shame" effect is immediate but does not persist, as it is only found for the first pupil-entry cohort in middle schools immediately after the reform. We show that it was triggered by the behavioral reactions of parents from all socioeconomic backgrounds, who avoided public schools in policy areas and shifted to those in other areas or, only for richer parents, to private schools. We uncover, on the contrary, only weak evidence of stigma reversion after an area loses its designation, suggesting hysteresis in bad reputations.

Keywords: School choices; Territorial stigmatization; Redlining; Urban segregation; Sorting (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022-12
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-ure
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Working Paper: Place-Based Policies: Opportunity for Deprived Schools or Zone-and-Shame Effect? (2023) Downloads
Working Paper: Place-Based Policies: Opportunity for Deprived Schools or Zone-and-Shame Effect? (2022) Downloads
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