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Title:The Failure of Mobility as an Effective Unemployment Adjustment Mechanism in the Urban Labor Market: The Case of Chicago
Author(s):Boyle, Edward Columba
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Geoffrey Hewings
Department / Program:Geography
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Sociology, Demography
Abstract:This research develops a set of models to explain the failure of migration-mobility to operate as a useful method of reducing unemployment in the Chicago area. A series of qualitative findings were used to create a theoretical framework, and based on this framework residential stayer models were created for the city of Chicago. High unemployment in the inner city at a time of increasing job creation across the Chicago metropolitan area suggests that there is something unusual about the Chicago labor market. Employment in the suburbs is a key element of the Chicago labor market, but the models created here highlight the inability of inner city minorities to access this market. The lack of physical access to the suburbs, the lack of access to employment information, and limited education act as constraining factors that prevent minority populations from obtaining employment in the suburbs. Without access to employment, the desire or ability to migrate to the suburbs is almost impossible. In the course of creating these models, a tipping point for mobility-migration was obtained. This tipping point lies between fifteen and twenty thousand dollars in annual income. Above this point, the ability to move or to be locked in the poverty neighborhood structure disappears. Below this point, the population while mobile, appears locked into a poverty neighborhood structure which constrains them to short distance intra-neighborhood moves. Those earning between $15,000 and \$20,000 are key to the stayer population. Most are employed in minimum wage occupations, but are unable to undertake a time consuming job search in the suburbs due to the costs that such a search would incur. Most labor market responses by minority residents are from a point of weakness, they are operating from a position dominated by the politics of poverty and disempowerment. Physical access, information access, and psychological access to all places of employment are needed if the inner residents of Chicago are to play a role in the labor market of the 21st century, and more importantly, if they are to contribute to the rebuilding and regenerating their own neighborhoods.
Issue Date:1997
Description:160 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1997.
Other Identifier(s):(MiAaPQ)AAI9737060
Date Available in IDEALS:2015-09-25
Date Deposited:1997

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