Michael S. Dahl and Olav Sorenson
Using panel data on the Danish population, we estimated the revealed preferences of scientists and engineers for the places in which they choose to work. Our results indicate that these technical workers exhibit substantial sensitivity to differences in wages but that they have even stronger preferences for living close to family and friends. The magnitude of these preferences, moreover, suggests that the greater geographic mobility of scientists and engineers, relative to the population as a whole, stems from more pronounced variation across regions in the wages that they can expect. These results remain robust to estimation on a sample of individuals who must select new places of work for reasons unrelated to their preferences—those who had been employed at establishments that discontinued operations.
Michael S. Dahl and Olav Sorenson (2010) “The migration of technical workers”,Journal of Urban Economics, Vol. 67 (1), pp. 33-45 [DOI Link]