“Prosperous rural areas predominantly in the Upper Midwest and Northern Plains are the country’s most powerful areas of upward mobility,” according to the Economic Innovation Group.
The report tracks, county by county, whether prosperity and advantage translate across economic lines. It found 420 counties out of 2,869 where the American Dream of prosperity and mobility is “alive and well.”
Wisconsin had the most counties in which well-being is broadly shared across economic classes. Economic mobility was also strong in New Jersey, Virginia, California and southwest communities with a strong immigrant presence.
The Southeast fared the worst. What do more prosperous areas have in common? Dynamic economies, job growth, an influx of new businesses.
Access to higher education and healthcare also figured in particularly prosperous places, as did two-parent households.
Three in five American children grow up in places where upward mobility is a struggle.
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