Cover: City Hall and the Neighborhoods: A Street-Level View of Urban Problems.

City Hall and the Neighborhoods: A Street-Level View of Urban Problems.

Published 1974

by Douglas Yates

Purchase Print Copy

 Format Price
Add to Cart Paperback9 pages $20.00

Based on five months' field work as a participant-observer in one neighborhood on the Lower East Side of New York City, the author discusses his "street-level" reactions to urban problems in terms of (1) effect of government programs, (2) impact of street-level bureaucrats, (3) the local residents' adaptation to neighborhood life, and (4) response of neighborhood organizations to local problems. Several important facts emerge: Responsiveness and trust problems can only be solved at the street level with the cooperation and involvement of neighborhood residents. Neighborhood leaders and residents have important resources for problem-solving and collective action. Decentralization is not a panacea and in some forms may have negative consequences. Most important, citizen resources and energies remain a powerful but latent force at the street level and City Hall is doing little to build neighborhood democracy on that foundation. 9 pp.

This report is part of the RAND paper series. The paper was a product of RAND from 1948 to 2003 that captured speeches, memorials, and derivative research, usually prepared on authors' own time and meant to be the scholarly or scientific contribution of individual authors to their professional fields. Papers were less formal than reports and did not require rigorous peer review.

This document and trademark(s) contained herein are protected by law. This representation of RAND intellectual property is provided for noncommercial use only. Unauthorized posting of this publication online is prohibited; linking directly to this product page is encouraged. Permission is required from RAND to reproduce, or reuse in another form, any of its research documents for commercial purposes. For information on reprint and reuse permissions, please visit

RAND is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.