Dayton sits on one side of a growing divide among American cities, in which a small number of metro areas vacuum up a large number of college graduates and the rest struggle to keep those they have.
The winners are cities like Bridgeport, Conn., San Francisco and Raleigh, N.C., where more than 40 percent of the population has a college degree. Cities like Youngstown, Ohio, Bakersfield, Calif., and Lakeland, Fla., where less than a fifth of the population has a college degree, are being left behind. The divide shows signs of widening as college graduates gravitate to places with a lot of other college graduates and the atmosphere that creates.
“This is one of the most important developments in recent economic history of this country,” said Enrico Moretti, an economist at the University of California, Berkeley, who just published a book on the topic, “The New Geography of Jobs.”
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