“There is a reason for this. Most third-world cities lack the infrastructure they need to serve their population. According to a recent report, India alone needs 4.5 trillion US dollars in infrastructure investment between 2016 and 2040”- p73
“Making matters worse,….city planners who resist building dense neighborhoods of high-rises for the middle class, aiming instead for a “garden city.”56 India, for example, imposes draconian limits on how high buildings can be, much stricter than what is found in Paris, New York, or Singapore. “-p74
“…network connections, of which the family is a specific example, are designed to solve specific problems, but it does not mean they promote the general social good. It turns out, for example, that parents who worry about being abandoned in old age may strategically underinvest in the education of their children to make sure they do not have the option of moving to the city. ”-p77
“The status quo, the outcome of letting things be, serves as a natural benchmark. Any loss relative to that benchmark is particularly painful. This concept was named loss aversion by Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky….Since their original work, a vast literature has demonstrated the existence of loss aversion and its ability to explain many apparently strange behaviors. For example, most people pay a huge premium on their home insurance plans to get a low deductible.67 This allows them to avoid that painful moment when, after some accident has damaged their house, they have to pay a large sum out of pocket (the high deductible). By comparison, the fact that they may be paying a lot extra now (to get the policy with the low deductible) is painless because they will never discover if it was a mistake. The same logic also explains why gullible buyers often end up with outrageously expensive “extended warranties.” In essence, loss aversion makes us extremely worried about any risk, even small, that is a consequence of our active choice. Migration, unless everyone else is doing it, is one of these active choices, and a big one; it is easy to imagine many will be chary of trying….Finally, failure in migration is something people take personally.”-p85
“The fear of failure is a substantial disincentive for embarking on a risky adventure. Many people prefer not to try.
“And if it is important to hold on to a certain self-image, then it also makes sense to burnish it. We do this actively by filtering out negative information…. Another option is to simply avoid taking actions that have at least some chance of rebounding badly on us. If I cross the road to avoid passing by a beggar, I won’t have to reveal to myself that I lack generosity. A good student may fail to study for an exam in order to have a ready-made excuse that will preserve his perception of being intelligent, should he not do well.”-p88
“There is also a long tradition in developing countries of governments using price and tax policies to benefit the urban sector at the cost of the rural.Some countries banned exports of farm products to keep prices where urban consumers wanted them. A by-product of these policies was to make agriculture unprofitable, encouraging people to leave their farms. Of course, these policies hurt the poorest people in the economy, the small farmers and the landless laborers, who may not have had the wherewithal to move…Mobility (internal and international) is a key channel through which standards of living can even out across regions and countries, and regional economic ups and downs can be absorbed. If workers move, they will take advantage of new opportunities and leave regions hit by economic adversity. This is how an economy can absorb crises and adapt to structural transformation.”-p100