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Identifying Complex Dynamics in Social Systems: A New Methodological Approach Applied to Study School Segregation
Univ Leeds, Sch Polit & Int Studies, Leeds LS2 9JT, W Yorkshire, England.
Linkoping Univ, Inst Analyt Sociol, Sociol, Norrkoping, Sweden;Linkoping Univ, Inst Analyt Sociol, Norrkoping, Sweden.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Mathematics and Computer Science, Department of Mathematics.
Linkoping Univ, Inst Analyt Sociol, Norrkoping, Sweden.
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2018 (English)In: Sociological Methods & Research, ISSN 0049-1241, E-ISSN 1552-8294, Vol. 47, no 2, p. 103-135Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

It is widely recognized that segregation processes are often the result of complex nonlinear dynamics. Empirical analyses of complex dynamics are however rare, because there is a lack of appropriate empirical modeling techniques that are capable of capturing complex patterns and nonlinearities. At the same time, we know that many social phenomena display nonlinearities. In this article, we introduce a new modeling tool in order to partly fill this void in the literature. Using data of all secondary schools in Stockholm county during the years 1990 to 2002, we demonstrate how the methodology can be applied to identify complex dynamic patterns like tipping points and multiple phase transitions with respect to segregation. We establish critical thresholds in schools' ethnic compositions, in general, and in relation to various factors such as school quality and parents' income, at which the schools are likely to tip and become increasingly segregated.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
SAGE PUBLICATIONS INC , 2018. Vol. 47, no 2, p. 103-135
Keywords [en]
dynamical systems, tipping points, nonlinearities, social systems, segregation, school segregation
National Category
Human Geography Mathematical Analysis
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-352981DOI: 10.1177/0049124116626174ISI: 000429944800001OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-352981DiVA, id: diva2:1233659
Available from: 2018-07-18 Created: 2018-07-18 Last updated: 2018-07-18Bibliographically approved

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