“Location matters, place matters,” says Nathaniel Hendren, a Harvard professor and one of the authors of the study. When it comes to a low-income child having a chance to climb up the economic ladder, “it matters where you grow up.”
That climb, the study shows, happens most commonly in the Northeast and the West, along with parts of the upper Midwest and much of Texas. New York, Boston, Seattle, Salt Lake City and Houston give a poor child a decent fighting chance. (In the map below, lighter colors indicate higher mobility; darker colors indicate lower mobility).
The odds of children from poor families moving into the middle class are significantly lower in the Southeast and industrial Midwest. Atlanta, Charlotte, Memphis, Raleigh, Indianapolis, and Columbus are some of the metropolitan areas where upward mobility seems to be seriously limited. Read more >>