Determinants of international migration: a methodological study based on Egypt

Richard Bilsborrow, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Samir FARID, Mediterranean Household International Migration Survey (MED-HIMS)
Qi Zhang, Boston University

Interest in international migration in increasing globally, with the stock of international migrants reaching 287 million in 2020 (3.5% of the world total: UN 2020). We use data from a large innovative household survey in Egypt on international migration to analyze and compare the determinants of emigration and return migration. Over 90,000 households were screened through a field listing process from a national sample of CAPMAS (Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics) to identify those with and without international migrants, followed by detailed interviews with 11,703 households and 22,635 individuals (migrants and non-migrants) in 2013. Egypt was the first country to implement a survey under the MED-HIMS (Mediterranean Household International Migration Survey) program, which developed, sampling procedures, manuals, etc., for implementation in the MENA region. This paper briefly describes this history, relevant migration theory, and data collection before using logistic regression to analyze in detail the effects of a wide range of individual and household factors on emigration and then on return migration. A key concept is that of the population at risk of migration, including migrant and non-migrant households and individuals. Strong statistical results are found for many factors, some rarely examined, especially individual characteristics.

Keywords: International migration, Methodology, Demographic and social surveys, Causal analysis / Causal estimation

See paper.

  Presented in Session 34. International Migration Projections, Determinants and Crossing Strategies