The paper analyses two interrelated fields: residential differentiation in the Vilnius metropolitan area on the basis of socio-economic status and of political alignment. Data from the 2001 and 2011 censuses were used to investigate socio-economic and ethnic segregation and data from the parliamentary elections of 2000 and 2012 were used for the analysis of political alignment. Indices of segregation and isolation were calculated, and the main occupational groups were used as a proxy for socio-economic status. GIS tools were used to visualise existing spatial differences. Though most indices indicated quite low levels of segregation, the situation was changing. The wealthiest and poorest groups tend to live more and more separately. The political preferences of the different social groups differ and differentiation of political field is increasing. The paper reveals socio-political spatial interrelations in the metropolitan area which have a unique ethnic structure. Our findings suggest that socio-economic structure is a major factor determining the degree of differentiation of electoral alignment in the metropolitan area. The different political preferences of the different ethnic groups could be related not simply to ethnicity but rather to socio-economic status.
Donatas Burneika [firstname.lastname@example.org], nstitute of Sociology at the Lithuanian Centre for Social Sciences Department of Regional and Urban Studies A. Goštauto str. 9, LT-01108 Vilnius: Lithuania
Aušra Baranauskaitė, Lithuanian Social Research Centre Institute of Human Geography and Demography A. Goštauto g. 11, LT-01108 Vilnius : Lithuania
Rūta Ubarevičienė, Institute of Human Geography and Demography Lithuanian social research center Goštauto 11, LT-01108 Vilnius: Lithuania