Neighborhood characteristics of registered sex offender residential locations: Evidence from the state of ohio

Xiafei Wang, Fei Pei, Shiyou Wu, Rebecca Dillard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Objective: The identification of neighborhoods where registered sex offenders (RSOs) reside may facilitate evidence-based service delivery and increase neighborhood capacity building. This study aims to determine if there is a patterned spatial aggregation of RSOs and to identify the neighborhood characteristics of RSO locations. Method: We used ArcGIS to match residential information from 938 Ohio ZIP Code areas with census data and conducted spatial autocorrelation analyses to explore and map spatial clustering of RSO residential locations. We used ordinary least squares and spatial regression models to estimate the association between neighborhood characteristics and the rate of RSOs. Results: The percentages of non-Hispanic Black population, Hispanic population, and poverty were positively associated with the rate of RSO residences; percentages of female-headed households, having a bachelor’s degree, and owner-occupied households were negatively associated with the rate of RSO residences. Overall, RSOs were spatially aggregated in socially disorganized areas. Conclusions: The findings can be used to promote evidence-informed policies to manage decarcerated RSOs, distribute limited resources to assist former offenders’ rehabilitation, and empower communities in disadvantaged neighborhoods to advance smart decarceration.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-81
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of the Society for Social Work and Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 by the Society for Social Work and Research. All rights reserved.


  • Evidence-informed policy
  • Registered sex offenders
  • Smart decarceration
  • Socially disorganized areas
  • Spatial aggregation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science


Dive into the research topics of 'Neighborhood characteristics of registered sex offender residential locations: Evidence from the state of ohio'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this