Natural Beauty, Money, and the Distribution of Talent: A Local-Level Panel Data Analysis

Xinxiang Chen, Guangqing Chi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


While factors affecting highly educated migrants are well documented, controversies on whether noneconomic or economic factors matter remain largely unexplored. This manuscript investigates the effects of natural amenities (water and forests) and economic forces (household income and unemployment rate) on talent distribution at the subcounty level. Natural amenities and economic forces were analyzed with respect to talent share empirically estimated at the municipal level in an amenity-rich lakes region of the North Central United States from 1970 to 2000. The limited panel data analysis results suggest that "natural beauty" (natural amenities) has no direct positive effect on talent share but that "money" (household income) matters. When interacting with "money," water coverage has a positive effect on talent share. Unemployment rate generally does not have any effect on talent distribution. The finding has important implication for local policy making in attracting talent migrants.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)665-681
Number of pages17
JournalPopulation Research and Policy Review
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Demography
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


Dive into the research topics of 'Natural Beauty, Money, and the Distribution of Talent: A Local-Level Panel Data Analysis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this