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Youth Out-Migration from Pennsylvania: The Roles of Government Fragmentation vs. the Beaten Path Effect

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  • Grassmueck, Georg
  • Goetz, Stephan J.
  • Shields, Martin

Abstract

The authors of a recent Brookings report argue that Pennsylvania’s lackluster economic performance, including a high rate of loss of young residents (age 25-34), is partly due to fragmented local units of government hindering comprehensive and regional approaches to stimulating economic growth. This assertion is based on casual inference rather than rigorous statistical analysis. In the present study we employ a newly-developed measure of state/county government fragmentation in a county-level econometric migration model to test the Brookings assertion formally. After examining and controlling for the complete set of fac-tors identified from previous studies to motivate youth out-migration, we conclude that government fragmentation acts to keep youth in Pennsylvania rather than drive them out. We conclude that calls for consolidating sub-county government units based on young migration are premature and offer a number of explanations for our finding along with policy implications.

Suggested Citation

  • Grassmueck, Georg & Goetz, Stephan J. & Shields, Martin, 2008. "Youth Out-Migration from Pennsylvania: The Roles of Government Fragmentation vs. the Beaten Path Effect," Journal of Regional Analysis and Policy, Mid-Continent Regional Science Association, vol. 38(1).
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:jrapmc:132346
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Hall, Joshua C., 2015. "Local Government Border Congruence and the Fiscal Commons: Evidence from Ohio School Districts," Journal of Regional Analysis and Policy, Mid-Continent Regional Science Association, vol. 45(2).
    2. Mark D. Partridge & M. Rose Olfert, 2011. "The Winners' Choice: Sustainable Economic Strategies for Successful 21st-Century Regions," Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 33(2), pages 143-178.
    3. Conroy, Tessa & Deller, Steven & Tsvetkova, Alexandra, 2016. "Regional business climate and interstate manufacturing relocation decisions," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 155-168.

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