An expert from a prominent Canadian university who has conducted years of population research on internal migration and immigration, health and aging will be the next seminar speaker sponsored by the West Virginia University Regional Research Institute.

Bruce Newbold, professor in the School of Geography and Earth Sciences at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, will present “Income Effects of Migration to a Large Metropolitan Area: Is Toronto an Escalator or Elevator?” The speech is scheduled for 12:30 p.m. Oct. 20 in room 325, Brooks Hall.

According to Newbold’s research, workers earn significantly higher incomes in large metropolitan areas compared to other locations in the urban hierarchy. His research examines the benefits that accrue to large urban areas as a result of migrations to those areas.

His presentation incorporates well-known geographer A.J. Fielding’s concept of the “escalator region” – a way to evaluate the role of labor markets, occupational mobility and migration on large metropolitan areas.

Newbold’s research evaluates whether young adult migrants to Toronto aged 20-29 receive income benefits that are higher than those associated with other migrants. He has reported that Toronto in-migrants receive an income benefit consistent with a productivity effect that is greater than the income benefit received by migrants elsewhere in the system or those who did not migrate. However, it does not appear that migration leads to an acceleration in income gains.

Newbold is director of the McMaster Institute of Environment and Health. He received his Ph.D. in Geography from McMaster University in 1994 and worked at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign between 1994 and 2000 before returning to McMaster in 2000.

Since returning to McMaster, he has held guest scholar positions at the Center for Comparative Immigration Studies, University of California San Diego (2004), and the Medical Research Council’s Social and Public Health Sciences Unit at the University of Glasgow (2008), a position which included a fellowship through the Department of Urban Studies, University of Glasgow.

Information about upcoming Regional Research Institute seminars is available at


gg 10/12/11

CONTACT: Caigan McKenzie, WVU Regional Research Institute

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