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Dynamic models of residential ségrégation: an analytical solution
Sébastian Grauwin1, 2, Florence Goffette-Nagot3, Pablo Jensen1, 2, 4

We propose an analytical resolution of Schelling segregation model for a general class of utility functions. Using evolutionary game theory, we provide conditions under which a potential function, which characterizes the global configuration of the city and is maximized in the stationary state, exists. We use this potential function to analyze the outcome of the model for three utility functions corresponding to different degrees of preference for mixed neighborhoods. Schelling original utility function is shown to drive segregation at the expense of collective utility. If agents have a strict preference for mixed neighborhoods but still prefer being in the majority versus in the minority, the model converges to perfectly segregated configurations, which clearly diverge from the social optimum. Departing from earlier literature, these conclusions are based on analytical results. These results pave the way to the analysis of many structures of preferences, for instance those based on empirical findings concerning racial preferences. As a by-product, our analysis builds a bridge between Schelling model and the Duncan and Duncan segregation index.
1 :  Phys-ENS - Laboratoire de Physique de l'ENS Lyon
2 :  IXXI - Institut Rhône-Alpin des systèmes complexes
3 :  GATE Lyon Saint-Étienne - Groupe d'analyse et de théorie économique
4 :  LET - Laboratoire d'économie des transports
Residential segregation – Schelling – dynamic model – potential function – social preferences