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Brain Drain and Brain Gain: Rising Educational Segregation in the United States, 1940–2000

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The post-industrialization of the American economy, combined with the expansion of American higher education, has created a new form of residential segregation. This paper examines recent trends in residential segregation between college graduates and high school graduates, demonstrating that America's educational geography became increasingly uneven between 1940 and 2000. During this period, educational inequality between American census divisions, metropolitan areas, counties, and census tracts increased dramatically. This trend is independent of recent developments in racial and economic segregation. Segregation between the highly educated and the less educated increased dramatically in the late 20th century, even as racial segregation declined, and economic segregation changed very little.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2006

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