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Urban and Counterurban Migration: City and Countryside Push and Pull, the Internet, and Spouses

Listed author(s):
  • Burke, Sandra Charvat
  • Edelman, Mark
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    The research reported in this paper directly compares and contrasts urban and counterurban migrants to assess economic, social, and counterurban models of migration. The research utilizes a unique study that not only located recent in-migrants but also located and surveyed out-migrants who had left the same areas thus allowing a direct comparison of two opposing migration streams. The findings show that the city and the countryside each have push and pull factors that influence migration decisions. The counterurban model is supported for nonmetro bound movers as they seek less congestion and the related aspects of a simpler pace of life, less crime, a pleasant environment, and lower housing costs. In addition to the recognized metropolitan pull factors of employment and income, this analysis shows that social relationships, entertainment amenities, and technological capabilities have important roles to play in migration decisions into metropolitan areas. These were additional factors that differentiated metro bound migrants from those going in the nonmetro direction and may become even more important in the future as technological innovations increase. There clearly are economic, family, community, and amenity factors at work in migration decisions. This research shows support for economic models in migration decisions and social ties also were reasons for moving. Our research found, however, that the most significant factors differentiating nonmetro movers from those who were metropolitan bound was in the areas of amenities and lifestyle. Nonmetropolitan migrants were seeking a counterurban lifestyle and metropolitan migrants were attracted by city amenities and activities.

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    Paper provided by Iowa State University, Department of Economics in its series Staff General Research Papers Archive with number 13036.

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    Date of creation: 01 Jan 2009
    Handle: RePEc:isu:genres:13036
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    Iowa State University, Dept. of Economics, 260 Heady Hall, Ames, IA 50011-1070

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    1. Everett Lee, 1966. "A theory of migration," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 3(1), pages 47-57, March.
    2. Kenneth Johnson & Paul Voss & Roger Hammer & Glenn Fuguitt & Scott Mcniven, 2005. "Temporal and spatial variation in age-specific net migration in the United States," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 42(4), pages 791-812, November.
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