By Olivia LaVecchia, Institute for Local Self-Reliance
One of a place’s greatest assets is its unique character, and another is its skilled residents. Luckily for cities, these strengths can reinforce each other. A recent study, published in the journal Sociological Spectrum, finds that the presence of locally owned retailers is one factor that leads residents to stay put. The authors of the study find that states with a greater share of locally owned retail experience a less-steep slope of people, especially college graduates, migrating out from their counties.