Friday, June 1, 2012

Educational Divide Perpetuates Downward Drift

On this past Wednesday, the New York Times had an interesting story about educational challenges facing cities like Dayton, OH.
Dayton sits on one side of a growing divide among American cities, in which a small number of metro areas vacuum up a large number of college graduates, and the rest struggle to keep those they have.
The winners are metro areas like Raleigh, N.C., San Francisco, and Stamford, Conn., where more than 40 percent of the population has a college degree. Metro areas like Bakersfield, Calif., Lakeland, Fla., and Youngstown, Ohio, where less than a fifth of the population has a college degree, are being left behind. The divide shows signs of widening as college graduates gravitate to places with a lot of other college graduates and the atmosphere that creates.
“This is one of the most important developments in recent economic history of this country,” said Enrico Moretti, an economist at the University of California, Berkeley, who recently published a book on the topic, “The New Geography of Jobs.”
(Well-Educated Flock to Some Cities, Leaving Others Behind)
The article made me think of Joel Garreau's book about edge cities and Robert Reich's discussion of the geographic concentration to areas like Princeton, NJ, of what he then called "the symbolic-analysts".

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