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Who stays, who goes, who returns?

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  • Nicola Fuchs-Schündeln
  • Matthias Schündeln

Abstract

We study the determinants of East-West migration within Germany during the period 1990-2006, using administrative data, the German Microcensus and the German Socio-Economic Panel. We find that in addition to income prospects and employment status, two well-known determinants of migration, psychological and social factors play an important role in determining the migration decision. Men and women move from East to West in proportionate numbers, but among individuals who lived in the East in 1989 women are more likely to migrate. The migrant body in the second wave of migration, starting in the late 1990s, is increasingly composed of young, educated people. By focusing on differences between temporary and permanent migrants, we find that older and single individuals are more likely to return East than stay permanently in the West, compared with younger and married individuals. Finally, the life satisfaction of permanent migrants increases significantly after a move, while that of temporary migrants remains essentially flat. Copyright (c) 2009 The Authors. Journal compilation (c) 2009 The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

Suggested Citation

  • Nicola Fuchs-Schündeln & Matthias Schündeln, 2009. "Who stays, who goes, who returns?," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 17(4), pages 703-738, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:etrans:v:17:y:2009:i:4:p:703-738
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    1. repec:kap:reveho:v:15:y:2017:i:4:d:10.1007_s11150-015-9306-9 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Tim Friehe & Helge Mueller & Florian Neumeier, 2017. "Media content's role in the making of a democrat: Evidence from East Germany," MAGKS Papers on Economics 201711, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung).
    3. Tim Friehe & Mario Mechtel, 2012. "Conspicuous Consumption and Communism: Evidence from East and West Germany," IAAEU Discussion Papers 201203, Institute of Labour Law and Industrial Relations in the European Union (IAAEU).
    4. Kuehn, Zoe, 2012. "Migration, Wages, and Parental Background: Obstacles to Entrepreneurship and Growth in East Germany," MPRA Paper 49250, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Boenisch, Peter & Schneider, Lutz, 2013. "The social capital legacy of communism-results from the Berlin Wall experiment," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 32(C), pages 391-411.
    6. Friehe, Tim & Mechtel, Mario, 2014. "Conspicuous consumption and political regimes: Evidence from East and West Germany," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 62-81.
    7. Tim Friehe & Mario Mechtel, 2017. "Gambling to leapfrog in status?," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 15(4), pages 1291-1319, December.
    8. Pannenberg, Markus & Friehe, Tim & Wedow, Michael, 2015. "Let Bygones be Bygones? Political Regimes and Personalities in Germany," Annual Conference 2015 (Muenster): Economic Development - Theory and Policy 112841, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    9. Pannenberg, Markus & Friehe, Tim, 2017. "Time preferences and political regimes: Evidence from reunified Germany," Annual Conference 2017 (Vienna): Alternative Structures for Money and Banking 168173, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    10. Filiz Garip, 2012. "An Integrated Analysis of Migration and Remittances: Modeling Migration as a Mechanism for Selection," Population Research and Policy Review, Springer;Southern Demographic Association (SDA), vol. 31(5), pages 637-663, October.

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