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Friendship ties and geographical mobility: evidence from Great Britain


  • Michèle Belot
  • John Ermisch


A common finding in analyses of geographic mobility is a strong association between past movement and current mobility. We argue that one of the driving forces behind this pattern is the strength of local social ties outside the household. We use data from the British Household Panel Survey on the location of the three closest friends and the frequency of meetings with them. We estimate the processes of friendship formation and residential mobility jointly, allowing for correlation between the two processes. Our results show that a larger number of close friends living nearby substantially reduces movement of 20 miles or more. Copyright (c) 2009 Royal Statistical Society.

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  • Michèle Belot & John Ermisch, 2009. "Friendship ties and geographical mobility: evidence from Great Britain," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 172(2), pages 427-442.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:jorssa:v:172:y:2009:i:2:p:427-442

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    Cited by:

    1. Ermisch, John & Steele, Fiona, 2016. "Fertility expectations and residential mobility in Britain," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 68878, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    2. Ermisch, John & Gambetta, Diego, 2010. "Do strong family ties inhibit trust?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 75(3), pages 365-376, September.
    3. repec:esx:essedp:729 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Eiji Yamamura, 2017. "Inherited social capital and residential mobility: A study using Japan panel data," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 37(1), pages 579-558.
    5. Breinlich, Holger & Ottaviano, Gianmarco I.P. & Temple, Jonathan R.W., 2014. "Regional Growth and Regional Decline," Handbook of Economic Growth,in: Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 4, pages 683-779 Elsevier.
    6. 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.
    7. Adamopoulou, Effrosyni & Kaya, Ezgi, 2013. "Young adults living with their parents and the influence of peers," UC3M Working papers. Economics we1310, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Departamento de Economía.
    8. Galenianos, Manolis, 2014. "Hiring through referrals," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 152(C), pages 304-323.
    9. Tak Chan & John Ermisch, 2015. "Proximity of Couples to Parents: Influences of Gender, Labor Market, and Family," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 52(2), pages 379-399, April.
    10. John Ermisch & Fiona Steele, 2016. "Fertility expectations and residential mobility in Britain," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 35(54), pages 1561-1584, December.
    11. Coulter, Rory & van Ham, Maarten & Findlay, Allan M., 2013. "New Directions for Residential Mobility Research: Linking Lives through Time and Space," IZA Discussion Papers 7525, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    12. Eiji Yamamura & Yoshiro Tsutsui & Chisako Yamane & Shoko Yamane, 2014. "Effect of major disasters on geographical mobility intentions: the case of the Fukushima nuclear accident," ISER Discussion Paper 0903, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University.

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