A Comparative Study of Neighborhoods

An ethnographic study conducted between January 1993 and September 1995 and co-directed by William Julius Wilson and Richard P. Taub (University of Chicago), this project involved an intensive and systematic comparative study of neighborhoods in Chicago. Graduate students were trained to observe and document life in these communities by slowly and methodically acquainting themselves with the conditions of the neighborhoods and the ways by which residents relate to one another and the community in general. Over time, researchers conducted resource inventories of the neighborhoods, mapped key formal and informal locations that played a critical role in the vitality of the community, conducted interviews with residents to hear firsthand about patterns of association, social and friendship networks, community cohesion and more generally, their perceptions of the ecological and cultural conditions of their neighborhood.

Notable Publications

Black on the Block Working-Class Heroes Talking at Trena's


There Goes the Neighborhood

By William Julius Wilson and Richard P. Taub (2007)