Master of Arts (MA)
First Committee Member
Timothy C. Hart
Second Committee Member
Third Committee Member
Fourth Committee Member
Number of Pages
While the theory of social disorganization has been refined through research and critique, data and methods used to measure key concepts related to the theory have largely remained the same. This study examines the extent to which resident perceptions of neighborhoods are reflected similarly in official data provided by the U.S. Census, in terms of both neighborhood boundaries and neighborhood conditions. It consists of a combination of respondent-identified data and official data gathered on neighborhoods, their condition, and crime. Comparisons between perceptual indicators of neighborhood boundary and characteristics and corresponding official data at the block, block group, and Census tracts are made. Path models of social disorganization are also developed, using both perceptual and official data collected in 2010 among Las Vegas, Nevada residents. Results demonstrate whether perceptual models that predict crime and delinquency outperform traditional models of social disorganization. This exploratory research has the potential of affecting the way social disorganization-related research is conducted in the future, by providing reasonable evidence for the need of alternative measures of neighborhood and its conditions.
Boundaries; Census; Census districts; Communities; Community; Mapping; Neighborhoods; Nevada – Las Vegas; Perception
Criminology | Geography | Place and Environment | Sociology
Waller, Jeremy, "Defining Neighborhood: Social Disorganization Theory, Official Data, and Community Perceptions" (2012). UNLV Theses, Dissertations, Professional Papers, and Capstones. 1645.