Assessing spatial mismatch patterns in the Gold Coast

Zador, Tari (2016) Assessing spatial mismatch patterns in the Gold Coast. [USQ Project]

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This research project empirically tests for the presence of spatial mismatch in the case study region of the Gold Coast, Australia. Spatial mismatch is defined as the mismatch between where low-income households reside, and suitable job opportunities (Kain 1968). Globally, several large scale empirical studies have identified a causal link between poor employment outcomes of low socio-economic residents, and the commuting distances to employment centres (Andersson et al. 2014; Dodson 2005; Ihlanfeldt 2006; Li, Campbell, & Fernandez 2013). However, to date there has been a lack of empirical analysis of the overlap between spatial dimensions of housing and employment (and the commuting such divisions necessitate) in Australia, and never in the case study region. Thus, empirical testing to identify the presence of spatial mismatch in the case study region, was considered practical in order to address the identified gap in the literature. Using Geographic Information System (GIS) software, secondary data from the 2006 and 2011 Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) censuses, at the Statistical Local Area (SLA) unit, was used to spatially identify three low socio-economic/high unemployment case study SLAs in the city. A map of the absolute difference in employment was developed using the ABS data in the five-year period. A buffer of 15.6km (average commuting distance Australians travel to access work (BITRE 2015)), was applied around each of the three case study SLAs; in order to identify if disadvantaged households were able to reach areas of high employment within reasonable commuting times. A secondary part of the research assessed the temporal quality of the public transport in each of the identified case study SLAs, as previous research identified that the key to reducing the effects of spatial mismatch is to improve public transport accessibility (Dodson 2005). The research identified that spatial mismatch was not considered an issue in the case study region of the Gold Coast as the number of employment opportunities grew in absolute numbers; however, the growth was mostly in part-time employment. This finding reflects several other studies, which have highlighted Australia’s shift in employment patterns towards an increase in part-time/casual employment (Australian Social Inclusion Board 2009; ABS 2016). The ABS data identified that housing affordability was not strongly spatially differentiated, with a high numbers of unemployed/low-income households, residing in inner city areas, which are subsequently close to employment centres. The public transport assessment identified that the highly disadvantaged outer suburban case study area of Nerang, provided the poorest service accessibility relative to the employment centres. This finding was confirmed with ABS (2011) identifying that households in case study areas with good access to public transport (Southport), were nearly twice as likely to not own a car, compared to those with poorer public transport access(Nerang).

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Item Type: USQ Project
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Bachelor of Spatial Science (Honours) Major Surveying project
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Civil Engineering and Surveying (1 Jul 2013 - 31 Dec 2021)
Supervisors: Basson, Marita
Date Deposited: 24 Jul 2017 03:12
Last Modified: 24 Jul 2017 03:12
Uncontrolled Keywords: spatial mismatch; Gold Coast; Geographic Information System (GIS); job opportunities; low-income households; empirical studies; accessibility; Statistical Local Area (SLA); public transport assessment
Fields of Research (2008): 09 Engineering > 0909 Geomatic Engineering > 090906 Surveying (incl. Hydrographic Surveying)
Fields of Research (2020): 40 ENGINEERING > 4013 Geomatic engineering > 401306 Surveying (incl. hydrographic surveying)

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