Rutgers University Study Finds Increase in “Concentrated Poverty”

sitting on boxFor the past half century the poverty rate for African Americans has been three times higher than the poverty rate for White Americans. Through good economic times and bad, Democratic or Republican administrations, there has been some fluctuations in rates but the racial gap has remained relatively constant.

Now a new report by the Center for Urban Research and Education at the Camden, New Jersey, campus of Rutgers University and the Century Foundation shows that concentrated poverty in the United States is on the rise. Concentrated poverty is defined as census tracts where 40 percent of the households live below the federal poverty income threshold of $23,000 for a family of four.

The report found that there are more census tracts of concentrated poverty than ever before. More than 11 million Americans, 4 percent of the total U.S. population, live in these high poverty neighborhoods. The report found that 67 percent of the 11 million people in these high poverty areas are either Black or Hispanic.

Related Articles


  1. It is always interesting that poverty and its concentration levels is always focused on people of color. What about poor whites? They always get a bye when discussing this issue. There needs to be a concerted effort to widen this discussion so that the fragmentation that comes from this slanted viewpoint can be avoided.

Leave a Reply

Get the JBHE Weekly Bulletin

Receive our weekly email newsletter delivered to your inbox

Latest News

Rate of Black Homeownership in America Remains Virtually Unchanged Since 2012

The National Association of Realtors has found that although homeownership rates in American are steadily increasing, the rate of Black homeownership has experienced significantly less growth than White, Asian, and Hispanic homeownership since 2012.

Safiya George Named President of the University of the Virgin Islands

“As a servant leader, I am confident I will be an effective President for the University of the Virgin Islands and will remain humble and grounded with a sincere desire to improve outcomes and the lives of students, faculty, staff, and the community," says Safiya George, who will assume the role of president of the University of the Virgin Islands this summer.

Study Examines Relationship Between Racism and Gun Ownership in America

The results found White people with racist attitudes are no more likely to own guns than those without racist beliefs. However, the study did find a correlation between racism and opposition to gun control policies.

Recent Books of Interest to African American Scholars

The Journal of Blacks in Higher Education regularly publishes a list of new books that may be of interest to our readers. The books included are on a wide variety of subjects and present many different points of view.

Featured Jobs