Panel Paper: Mapping Homelessness in Conjunction with Housing Policies Across Major U.S. Cities

Sunday, April 9, 2017 : 11:45 AM
HUB 367 (University of California, Riverside)

*Names in bold indicate Presenter

Janet Li, University of Southern California
The number of homeless individuals per capita has proliferated across major U.S. cities in recent years. This project maps homelessness in select urban areas across various time points over the past decade, using innovative data visualization strategies to illustrate growth in homelessness in correlation with other economic and housing factors. These other factors include changes in wages, rents, and population demographics; and tightening of housing markets regulated by city development and planning policies. For example, in San Francisco, growth in homelessness is correlated with greater rates of new residents and changes in housing, including increasing rental burden rates, rises in residential crowding, displacement into other neighborhoods, and increases in informal housing units. It has also proliferated under San Francisco's especially slow housing development and entitlement processes, which are not growing housing stock at a sufficient rate to meet housing demand. Time shocks, including the impact of the Great Recession and our economic recovery, are also analyzed and visualized. Data is collected and analyzed from the American Community Survey and the Decennial Census, as well as city-managed open data platforms. This project is unique in visualizing growth in homelessness nationwide among major cities, and comparing it to other common economic and housing factors, including policies which have either slowed or exacerbated homelessness.