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Why are They Moving Away? Comparing Attachment to Place in the Great Plains to the Rest of the Nation

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Author(s): Scott Loveridge | Dale Yi | Janet L. Bokemeier

Journal: Online Journal of Rural Research & Policy
ISSN 1936-0487

Volume: 4;
Issue: 1;
Date: 2009;
Original page

ABSTRACT
We combine a telephone survey of working-aged adults in the continental US with Census 2000 county and zip code tabulation area data to explore attachment to place. Using results of the 2000 US Census, we define cultural and economic regions. Our modified “Great Plains” area is that portion of the region that is experiencing population decline. We explore how attachment to place is different between the Great Plains and other regions of the US. Our measure of attachment to place is a question on the amount of additional income respondents would require to move to a similar community 500 miles away. We identify three respondent groups: unconditional migrants, conditional migrants, and unconditionally rooted. Basic tabulations and regression analysis reveal differences between the Great Plains and other regions. Natural amenities present in the community appear to play a role in shaping respondent attitudes towards relocation.

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