What Does Culture Have to Do With the American Dream?
In recent years, Stanford economist Raj Chetty and his colleagues have pioneered the study of economic mobility in American life. His work indicates that certain types of communities are significantly more likely to foster rags-to-riches mobility for poor children over the course of their lives than other communities. In short, his work suggests that communities with less racial/economic segregation, better schools, more income equality, more social capital, and more two-parent families are more likely to promote the American Dream for poor children. So, for instance, Salt Lake City is more conducive to mobility than Atlanta.