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Human Capital Theory and Internal Migration: Do Average Outcomes Distort Our View of Migrant Motives?

PublicationArticle (with peer review)
A. V. William Clark, Arbetskraftens rörlighet, Företagandets villkor, Humankapital, Martin Korpi, Migration, Urbanisering

Abstract

By modelling the distribution of percentage income gains for movers in Sweden, using multinomial logistic regression, this paper shows that those receiving large pecuniary returns from migration are primarily those moving to the larger metropolitan areas and those with higher education, and that there is much more variability in income gains than what is often assumed in models of average gains to migration. This suggests that human capital models of internal migration often overemphasize the job and income motive for moving, and fail to explore where and when human capital motivated migration occurs.

Related content: Working paper No. 213

Korpi, M., & Clark, W. A. V. (2017). Human capital theory and internal migration: do average outcomes distort our view of migrant motives?Migration letters: an international journal of migration studies14(2), 237.

Based on content

Internal migration and human capital theory: To what extent is it selective?
Article (with peer review)Publication
Korpi, M., & Clark, W. A. V.
Publication year

2015

Abstract

Empirical studies of internal labor migration, modelling average outcomes, suggest migrants move to enhance returns to their labor. In contrast, major international surveys show less than a third of internal migrants as motivated by employment reasons. Using Swedish panel data for the years 2001-2009, this paper addresses this disconnect by examining the full distribution of migrant income changes. Results from initial CEM matching and quantile regression suggest that large returns to internal migration are mostly captured by the higher educated, those initially low in the income distribution and those heading into the largest metropolitan regions. Much if not most of migration outcomes are however a wash and indeed often negative in terms of pay-off. This suggests models of average outcomes as insufficient in addressing human capital motivated migration.
Related content: Working paper No. 244

Internal migration and human capital theory: To what extent is it selective?
Article (with peer review)Publication
Korpi, M., & Clark, W. A. V.
Publication year

2015

Abstract

Empirical studies of internal labor migration, modelling average outcomes, suggest migrants move to enhance returns to their labor. In contrast, major international surveys show less than a third of internal migrants as motivated by employment reasons. Using Swedish panel data for the years 2001-2009, this paper addresses this disconnect by examining the full distribution of migrant income changes. Results from initial CEM matching and quantile regression suggest that large returns to internal migration are mostly captured by the higher educated, those initially low in the income distribution and those heading into the largest metropolitan regions. Much if not most of migration outcomes are however a wash and indeed often negative in terms of pay-off. This suggests models of average outcomes as insufficient in addressing human capital motivated migration.
Related content: Working paper No. 244

Human Capital Theory and Internal Migration: Do Average Outcomes Distort Our View of Migrant Motives?
Artikel (med peer review)Publication
Korpi, M., & Clark, W. A. V.
Publication year

2017

Abstract

By modelling the distribution of percentage income gains for movers in Sweden, using multinomial logistic regression, this paper shows that those receiving large pecuniary returns from migration are primarily those moving to the larger metropolitan areas and those with higher education, and that there is much more variability in income gains than what is often assumed in models of average gains to migration. This suggests that human capital models of internal migration often overemphasize the job and income motive for moving, and fail to explore where and when human capital motivated migration occurs.

Related content: Working paper No. 213

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