Urban social and spatial geography is largely connected with household income. In class the texts of Kaplan and Berube have been examined to demonstrate that these concepts are directly related. The Claritas Corporation has created “lifestyle clusters” that attempt to explain the division in social geography along with the occurrence of different divides within cities. The complexity theory goes along with this concept explaining that a city is a series of intricate processes and can be understood through the different elements of an urban area.
Cities are often considered emergent systems and processes that can be related to biology and these processes are often driven by human activity. This is often called macro societal behavior, which are behaviors that endure longer than their component elements. Urban areas can also be related to top-down processes and then studied through the neighborhoods. Cities are not areas that can be viewed as a whole, but are broken down for better understanding of their complexity.
By examining different texts, and especially census data and Claritas Corporation’s “lifestyle clusters” a definition of urban spaces socially and spatially is created. Also, due to technological advances, the ability examines cities and their functioning is more accurately determined. The lifestyles also resulted in the Potential Rating Index for Zip Markets, New Evolution, or PRIZM NE. This was a process that assigned zip codes to predefined clusters according to the socioeconomic characteristics of the area. Different characteristics included; wealth, race, age, ethnicity, family structure, etc. This study also explained spatial information and how cities are divided. A goal of these clusters is to reach the common goal of understanding the forces that determine the patterns of distinct group settlements throughout a city or what are the patterns that explain the way social groups are distributed? Claritas Corporations “lifestyle clusters” break down different “social groupings” that work to explain the division that has occurred within modern cities.
The application of PRIZM NE helps to understand this question that analyzes cities as broad, complex processes. One large factor on the spatial divide in cities is the increased technological innovations and the influence of a globalized economy. Even though much of this growth is sporadic and chaotic, there is some rational and pattern to the urban spatial changes that have occurred.
In Kaplan’s text, Chapter 8 goes into detail of social structures and an understanding of different social groups within a city. This chapter discusses several theories that works to better understand the geography and social structure of urban areas and neighborhoods. First the concepts of social and spatial distance must be understood. Social distance argues that social groups do not want interaction with groups besides their own and due to this there is resulting spatial distance. This...