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Abstract

This paper combines the study of income distribution with that of natural disasters. We introduce several income density functions to approximate the income distributions of five samples: New Orleans prior to Katrina, New Orleans after Katrina, the United States during the same year (2005), and then New Orleans and the United States in 2007. We then assess the goodness of fit of these models to determine which most accurately represents the income dis-tributions of the samples. We conclude with a discussion of how the income inequality and distribution was impacted in the city of New Orleans by Hurricane Katrina using the best-fitting models and examine the persistence of these changes two years later.

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