Date of Award

Spring 2023

Project Type


Program or Major


Degree Name

Master of Arts

First Advisor

Cliff Brown

Second Advisor

Lawrence Hamilton

Third Advisor

Ryan Gibson


The phenomenon of gentrification occurs in cities and towns across the United States in a racialized way. Despite several gentrification indices existing, thus far none measure racial gentrification nor incorporate racialized practices associated with gentrification into their measures. This paper aims to create a novel index measuring racial gentrification across 73 cities and towns in Massachusetts from 2000 to 2020 using Census and Diversity and Disparities data. The racial gentrification index constructed comprises of 3 economic gentrification variables and 6 residential segregation variables. Through multiple linear regression analyses, racial gentrification is tested as a predictor of three structural outcomes that have been empirically established to be associated with gentrification: manager/professional occupation, unemployment, and rent burden. Results found racial gentrification to be a significant predictor of proportionate increases in unemployment and rent burdens of 35% or higher. Furthermore, in cities and towns experiencing greater proportions of racial gentrification, results showed them to have disproportionate increases in median rent and median household income compared to the relatively proportionate increases in rent and income for economically gentrifying cities and towns.