Maarten van Ham is a Professor of Urban Renewal, Neighbourhood Change and Housing at OTB-Research for the Built Environment, Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands, and Professor of Human Geography at the University of St Andrews in Scotland. He studied Economic Geography at Utrecht University, where he received his MSc in 1998 and his PhD in 2002. Maarten was a visiting Research Fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin (2001 and 2003) and worked at Utrecht University and the University of Amsterdam before moving to the University of St Andrews in 2006. In St Andrews Maarten was director of research of the Centre for Housing Research (CHR). In 2011 Maarten moved to Delft University of Technology where he has a full chair position.

His research interests can be broadly defined as the causes and consequences of family migration: why do people move residence and what are the consequences of moving for the housing, household and labour career? Initially his research focused on the links between residential location, migration and occupational achievement, including overeducation. In recent years his interests have broadened to include: selective mobility into and out of neighbourhoods; neighbourhood effects (see:; migration and home ownership in Europe; mixed-ethnic unions; and international marriage migration. He currently works on projects in the UK, Sweden, Estonia, Lithuania and the Netherlands. Maarten published in international journals such as Environment and Planning A; Urban Studies; Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies; Housing Studies; Demography; Demographic Research; Regional Studies; Population, Space and Place; Applied Economics Quarterly; Journal of Urban Economics. In 2014 Maarten has won an ERC grant. See:

He joined IZA as a Research Fellow in March 2009.



IZA Discussion Paper No. 6372
published in: Christopher D Lloyd, Ian Shuttleworth and David Wong (eds.), Social-Spatial Segregation: Concepts, Processes and Outcomes, The Policy Press, 2014

In this chapter we investigate the process of ethnic minority segregation in English social housing. Successive governments have expressed a commitment to the contradictory aims of providing greater choice – through the introduction of choice based letting – for households accessing an increasingly marginalised social housing sector whilst also expressing...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 6146
published as: 'Following People Through Time: An Analysis of Individual Residential Mobility Biographies' in: Housing Studies, 2013, 28(7), 1037-1055

Conceptually, adopting a life course approach when analysing residential mobility enables us to investigate how experiencing particular life events affects mobility decision-making and behaviour throughout individual lifetimes. Yet although a growing body of longitudinal research links mobility decision-making to subsequent moving behaviour, most studies focus solely upon examining year-to-year transitions....

IZA Discussion Paper No. 6140
published in: [Environment and Planning A], 2013, 45 (4), 986-1002

The majority of modelling studies on consequences of internal migration focus almost exclusively on the labour market outcomes and the material well-being of migrants. We investigate whether individuals who migrate within the UK become happier after the move than they were before it and whether the effect is permanent or...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 6062
published in: [Environment and Planning A], 2013, 45 (5), 1219-1239

Based on the notion that entrepreneurship is a 'local event', the literature argues that self-employed workers and entrepreneurs are 'rooted' in place. This paper tests the 'residential rootedness'-hypothesis of self-employment by examining for Germany and the UK whether the self-employed are less likely to move or migrate than employees. Using...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 5861
published as 'Spatial mobility and social outcomes' in: Journal of Housing and the Built Environment, 2014, 29 (4), 699-727

The research reported in this paper examines the nature and extent of socio-spatial mobility in the United Kingdom. In contrast with previous studies, we do not only investigate who moves out of deprived neighbourhoods, but our models cover the entire spectrum of neighbourhoods and provide a more complete interpretation of...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 5634
published in: Bridge, G., Butler, T. & Lees, L. (eds.), Mixed Communities: Gentrification by Stealth, Policy Press, Bristol, 2011

In this paper, we review the evidence base for social mixing in neighbourhoods, which is used as a strategy to tackle assumed negative neighbourhood effects. We discuss in detail the theoretical links between neighbourhood characteristics, and outcomes of individuals living in concentrations of poverty. Through this we identify the theoretical...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 5628
published as 'The Consequences of Divorce and Splitting up for Spatial Mobility in the UK' in: [Comparative Population Studies], 2013, 38 (2), 405-432

The number of people who have ever experienced a divorce, or a split up of a non-marital union, is rising every year. It is well known that union dissolution has a disruptive effect on the housing careers of those involved, often leading to downward moves on the housing ladder. Much...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 5622
published as 'Factors Shaping Workplace Segregation Between Natives and Immigrants' in: [Demography], 2014, 51(2), 645-671

In addition to neighbourhoods of residence, family and places of work play important roles in producing and reproducing ethnic segregation. Therefore, recent research on ethnic segregation and contact is increasingly turning its attention from residential areas towards other important domains of daily interethnic contact. The key innovation of this paper...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 5617
revised version published in: Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 2013, 39 (5), 845-862

Large scale suburbanisation is a relatively recent phenomenon in East Central Europe and responsible for major socio-spatial changes in metropolitan areas. Little is known about the ethnic dimensions of this process. However, large minority population groups, mainly ethnic Russians, remained into the former member states of the Soviet Union after...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 5612
published as 'Partner (dis)agreement on moving desires and the subsequent moving behaviour of couples' in: [Population, Space and Place], 2012, 18 (1), 16-30

Residential mobility decisions are known to be made at the household level. However, most empirical analyses of residential mobility relate moving behaviour to the housing and neighbourhood satisfaction and pre-move thoughts of individuals. If partners in a couple do not share evaluations of dwelling or neighbourhood quality or do not...