States effective at attracting more inhabitants should be awarded more points.

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Rewarding states that attract more inhabitants defeats the egalitarian goal of the game. By rewarding popular states for being popular, you're saying "this is what everyone should be doing", which in itself is fine. The problem arises if you have some states that are so popular that they subvert a significant portion of another state's populace. Then, in an economic-based model for the game, the state with fewer people will be at a disadvantage in terms of production while the popular state gains further economic advantage. This will lead, over a fairly short amount of time, to inequality between states, and any people remaining in the disadvantaged state will have higher and higher incentive to leave.

If banishment is also a feature of the game, I would not agree with awarding points based on the number of inhabitants alone. If a citizen is banished, and forced into another state, that state should not be awarded points based on that citizens forced entrance into that state. If the game was able to give points to states that effectively attract non banished citizens, then awarding states points seems logical. The ranking of a state would be based on its ability to provide a desirable environment for citizens and that seems favorable to finding which types of governments and policies are most effective in serving the population.
What would also be interesting would be to see which citizens migrate to certain states and why. It would seem that a state that was capable of attracting a diverse population would be most desirable. If a state attracts a diverse population it is likely to be because the government and its policies are most fair and offer the most equal opportunities for its citizens. If it is possible to account for the diversity of the citizens entering the state, that should be awarded extra points.