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Working Paper Number SEHSD-WP2013-11
Charlynn A. Burd
Component ID: #ti1788270600

This work is released to inform interested parties of ongoing research and to encourage discussion of work in progress. Any views or opinions expressed in the paper are the authors’ own and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the U.S. Census Bureau.

Component ID: #ti687975720


The creative class is conceptualized as a highly mobile group.  In the free market economic environment of the United States, the creative class has been viewed as a group who potentially could have a large economic impact on metropolitan regions.  As such, the creative class is highly sought after by cities in order to encourage and promote economic development.  While Florida’s (2002) definition of the creative class included a broad range of creative individuals, measured by occupational categories from artists to physicists to engineers, there has been no consensus of occupations that are truly classified as creative.  In addition, there has been no baseline method established that analyzes the creative class by occupation and migration simultaneously.

This research explores the relationship between migration and occupation by metropolitan areas in the United States, specifically focusing on the creative class.  The American Community Survey (ACS) captures all three elements that are pertinent to this analysis, occupation, migration, and metropolitan location.  The 2009-2011 3-Year ACS Estimates provide the most recent data for examining the creative class emerging from the 2008 United States recession.  Previous 2006-2008 3-year data allows for a baseline dataset for comparison.  This paper analyzes the migration of the creative class from 2006-2008 to 2009-2011 by selected occupations.  Occupational categories continue to be used to examine the creative class (Abel et al. 2012), but only limitedly with regard to migration (Scott 2009).  This analysis contributes to understanding migration of the creative class.  There is one main question guiding this research:  What are the geographic differences between migrating individuals with occupations in the creative class?  In order to examine this, the current concentration of occupations based on three knowledge bases, as defined in Asheim and Hansen (2009) are identified.

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