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The mobility transition in Asia between 1970-2011

Wanli Nie, UCLouvain
Ashira Menashe-Oren, Universite catholique de Louvain (UCL)
Philippe Bocquier, Universite catholique de Louvain (UCL)

The mobility transition hypothesizes that in parallel to the demographic transition, defined patterns of migration are notable. These shifts in migration are also expected to change over the course of urbanization. We aim to investigate empirically whether a mobility transition in Asia exists, or whether it diverges from theory, by directly estimating migration from 27 census samples. We pool together census from ten Asian countries, and covering four decades, and model migration rates by sex, age and educational attainment using Poisson models. Preliminary results suggest that internal net migration fluctuated over time, and peaked in the 2000s in Asia. Intra-rural migration is especially high throughout the period, suggesting that countries in Asia are still at relatively early stages of the mobility transition. That said, there is also relatively high migration within other urban areas. When we examine the age profile of internal migrants, we note that both rural to urban and urban to rural out-migration follow similar schedules to known migration age profiles, peaking in early adult years, but rural to urban rates are substantially higher in these ages.

Keywords: Internal migration, Urbanization and urban populations, Census data

See extended abstract.

  Presented in Session 170. Understanding Migration: Applying New Data and Methods