Keywon Cheong

Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Sociology, Social Work, and Anthropology


Michael B. Toney


This study assesses effects of contextual and personal characteristics on the migration propensities of individuals, with primary focus on several measurements of individual poverty status and the poverty level of the residential areas. The restricted opportunity perspective on poverty, the human capital perspective and the microeconomic perspective on migration, are the major frameworks guiding the study. Logistic regression analysis of data from the National Longitudinal Surveys of the Youth Cohort and from the 1983 County and City Data Book is employed to investigate differences in the Migration behavior between the poor and nonpoor, and significant main and interactive effects of the macrolevel and microlevel factors on the migration behavior of American youth. The major findings are: (1) youth living in areas with less employment opportunities are more migratory; (2) poor youth are less migratory than the nonpoor; and (3) the poor living in areas with less employment opportunities are least migratory. These findings are consistent when migration is classified into primary and repeat migration, but are not consistent across the ethnic groups.



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