Understanding the Effects of Migration Background on Internal Migration Behavior

Alon Pertzikovitz , Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute (NIDI) / KNAW/ University of Groningen
Gusta Wachter, Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute (NIDI)/KNAW/University of Groningen
Matthijs Kalmijn, Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Research Institute NIDI/University of Groningen

Internal migration is essential for individuals to achieve their goals and fulfill their needs. Previous work has found that adult children of international migrants in Western Europe are less mobile than individuals of native origin. Theory suggests that structural differences such as economic resources and preferences for living nearby family may explain lower internal migration rates among children of migrants. This study explores potential explanations for group differences in internal migration behavior between adult children of migrant and individuals of native descent, particularly the role of economic resources and family ties. To do so, we draw on longitudinal register data from the Netherlands, to follow the internal migration trajectories of the entire adult population in an observation window of 16 years, between 2006 and 2022. Event history models and mediation analysis showed that once socio-demographic characteristics and economic resources were controlled for, children of migrants were less likely to migrate than individuals of native origin. However, these differences were explained by living proximity to kin, such that children of migrants were as (and even more) likely to migrate than their native counterparts. These findings suggest that the pivotal role of the family in (re)location decision making is especially pronounced among migrant communities. The study sheds light on group differences in preferences and resources underlying divergent internal migration behavior.

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 Presented in Session 72. Spatial Segregation and Migrant Populations