Despite a decade of technological advances that make it possible to work almost anywhere, many of the nation’s most educated people continue to cluster in a handful of dominant metropolitan areas such as Boston, New York and California’s Silicon Valley, according to census data released Thursday.
The upshot is that regions with the most skilled and highly paid workers continue to widen their advantages over less well-endowed locales.
“In a knowledge economy, success breeds success,” said Alan Berube, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C.
Of the largest 100 metropolitan areas, those with the highest percentage of college graduates in 2000 outpaced in education gains areas with lower percentages of college grads. For instance, the 10 cities with the highest share of their population holding a bachelor’s degree or higher saw that share jump by an average of 4.6 percentage points over the decade, while the bottom 10 saw their share grow 3.1 percentage points.