Brian Cushing

Document Type

Working Paper

Publication Date


Document Number

Research Paper #2004-11


This research considers how preferences for location-specific attributes might constrain migration destination choices. In particular, if, at any given time, most people are consuming their desired location-specific attributes, then unwillingness to give up these attributes may influence the decision to migrate. For those who migrate, these desired attributes might significantly constrain the locations they would consider. This perspective differs substantially from the normal approach that assumes people move toward “good attributes” and away from “bad attributes.” The research provides an initial test of a “constrained destination choice” hypothesis by considering “locational attribute constraints” in the context of aggregate place-to-place migration flows for U.S. metropolitan areas during the 1995-2000 time period.