The Nebraska Roots Migration Survey: Rural-Urban Split

Authors: Andrew Husa*, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Topics: Rural Geography
Keywords: Urban, Rural, Demographics, Mobility, Nebraska
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/8/2020
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:15 AM
Room: Director's Row J, Sheraton, Plaza Building, Lobby Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


The purpose of the Nebraska Roots Migration Survey research is to better understand the factors that influence Nebraskans to stay, leave, or move back to Nebraska. Survey respondents were asked to select all of the factors that influenced them to remain in, leave, or return to Nebraska from a list of potential factors. In addition to selecting factors from a list of possibilities, the survey asked respondents to explain in their own words why they decided to stay, leave, or return. This paper discusses the questions asked by the survey and the implications of the subsequent answers.

The paper compares and contrasts the results of respondents from urban and rural areas. The United States Census Bureau defines any community of over 2,500 as urban, and any that are under 2,500 as rural. Therefore, the survey respondents from towns of over 2,500 are classified as urban while those from towns of under 2,500 are classified as rural. The Nebraska Roots Migration Survey consists of 835 (46%) rural responses and 992 (54%) urban responses. These responses are broken into three categories based on whether respondents identified as stayers, leavers, or returnees. There is a clear split in urban respondents emphasizing more dynamic and impersonal factors while rural respondents valued stable values, such as family and community.

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