The Social Attachment to Place


Many theories either implicitly or explicitly assume that individuals readily move to places that improve their financial well-being. Other forces, however, offset these tendencies; for example, people often wish to remain close to family and friends. We introduce a methodology for determining how individuals weigh these countervailing forces, and estimate how both financial and social factors influence geographic mobility in the Danish population. Our results suggest that individuals respond to opportunities for higher pay elsewhere, but that their sensitivity to this factor pales in comparison to their preferences for living near family and friends.