Migration Theories and Findings: Some People Move, Some People Don't

2190 WordsJan 29, 20189 Pages
Migration theories and findings: Some people move, some people don’t Introduction Migration—the process by which individuals move from one geographic location to another—has been an intriguing topic for demographers for decades. Migration can be internal, that is, within a particular country or territory, or international. Demographers have attempted to understand the motivations and types of individuals who migrate by considering aggregate characteristics of migrant populations and individual-level thoughts and motivations. Knowing who migrates and why provides insight into the potential outcomes of migration, given that migration has huge implications for the sending and receiving communities. Migration not only influences the population size, racial/ethnic and age compositions, but economic systems of sending and receiving communities and nations. In the following paragraphs, I will critically evaluate several theories of migration: Neoclassical Economic Theory, Dual Labor Markets Theory, World Systems Theory, the New Economics of Labor Theory (NELM), and Network Theory. Each has different implications for the sort of populations that are prone to migrate, and the underlying motivations of immigrants. I will also discuss internal migration theory, and illustrate how a life cycle approach, which is not traditionally viewed as a major theory of migration, but considered in neighborhood movement studies, would enrich our understanding of who migrates, and why at both the

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