This paper explores the dynamics of how the human capital embodied in metropolitan populations might impact metropolitan productivity. Three aspects of human capital are examined: the average aggregate level of human capital, stratification according to human capital and spatial segregation according to human capital. These are measured for the 100 largest metropolitan areas in the US for 1970, 1980 and 1990, and then tested as explanatory variables of metropolitan productivity. Econometric analysis confirms a strong relationship between higher average levels of human capital and higher productivity and growth. Stratification appears negatively correlated with productivity in 1970 and 1980, but positively correlated in 1990. Segregation appears negatively correlated with productivity in the 1970s, and in 1990 when controlling for stratification.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
- Urban Studies