Monday, 2 March 2015

Which ethnic group in England and Wales is the most spatially concentrated?

This post examines the spatial concentration of different ethnic groups in England and Wales, using data from the 2011 census. The eight largest ethnic groups in 2011 were (from largest to smallest): White British, Indian, Pakistani, African, Caribbean, Irish, Bangladeshi, and Chinese. Here, ethnicity is defined by the respondent herself, who ticks whichever box on the census form (e.g., 'Chinese British') corresponds most closely to her own identity. (For the sake of clarity, I omit 'British' from all ethnic group names other than 'White British'.) 

The ONS reports the number of each ethnic group in 348 local authorities in England and Wales. To quantify spatial concentration: I first rank local authorities by percentage of the total population of a particular ethnic group contained within a particular local authority, separately for each ethnic group; and I then plot cumulative percentage of the total population against cumulative percentage of local authorities from highest to lowest, separately for each ethnic group.  

In the legend on the chart above, ethnic groups are ordered from least spatially concentrated to most spatially concentrated: White British is the least spatially concentrated, while Pakistani is the most spatially concentrated. The top 5% of local authorities (for the relevant ethnic group) contain: 15% of White British, 29% of Irish, 32% of Chinese, 52% of Indians, 50% of Africans, 58% of Caribbeans, 62% of Bangladeshis, and 57% of Pakistanis. The top 10% of local authorities contain: 25% of White British, 44% of Irish, 47% of Chinese, 65% of Indians, 69% of Africans, 75% of Caribbeans, 75% of Bangladeshis, and 75% of Pakistanis.   

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