Chapter Learning Objectives

  • Recognize the broad patterns of geographic mobility in the United States.
  • Understand why mobility is an investment in human capital, and be able to delineate the factors that render mobility either more or less likely at the margin.
  • Explain why an increase in the riskiness of earnings in the destination region can render migration more likely at the margin.
  • Know the basic principles of how migration decisions are made within the broader context of the family.
  • Recognize the economic forces responsible for the regional migration of labor.
  • Understand the main precepts of the Harris-Todaro model, which is the main theoretical tool economists use to characterize rural–urban migration flows.