Tuesday, June 16, 2015

The Geography of Aspiration

Migration analysis places too much emphasis on push factors and not enough on the pull of opportunity.

Theme: Models of migration

Subject Article: "The low skilled are less mobile geographically because of the meagre value of work."

Other Links: 1. "Income per Natural: Measuring Development as if People Mattered More Than Places."
2. "A Sharp Drop in Interstate Migration? Not really: New data procedures led to misperception of dramatic decline in U.S. population mobility."
3. "This Government Program is Reducing American Mobility. Here’s Why That’s Hurting Our Economy."
4. "Benefits of Bowling Alone."
5. "Why are Higher Skilled Workers More Mobile Geographically? The Role of the Job Surplus."

Postscript: Fueled by macroeconomic cycles, who migrates and why change over time. Manufacturing jobs didn't offer a skill premium, begetting the Great Migration. Sometime after WWII, probably in the late 60s or early 70s (oil crisis of 1973 as a big break), the script flipped. The better educated had more reason to move. Couple that with a low-skilled international migration that mirrored the Great Migration and kept employers happy with a cheap supply of labor. Fast forward to today, companies in the market for low-skill or middle-skill workers will have a tough time filling positions.

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