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Formation of Migrant Networks

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  • Margherita Comola
  • Mariapia Mendola

Abstract

In this paper, we provide the first direct evidence on the internal structure of the migrant social network. By using a purposely designed survey on Sri Lankan immigrants living in Milan, we show that the pattern of within-group link formation is heterogeneous across immigrants, and differentiated according to the network function (i.e., accommodation, credit, job-finding). We find that migrants tend to interact with co-nationals who come from nearby localities at origin, while the time of arrival has a U-shaped effect. Once the link is formed, material support is provided mainly to relatives, while early migrant fellows are helpful for job-finding.

Suggested Citation

  • Margherita Comola & Mariapia Mendola, 2015. "Formation of Migrant Networks," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 117(2), pages 592-618, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:scandj:v:117:y:2015:i:2:p:592-618
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1111/sjoe.12093
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Fedotenkov, Igor, 2015. "International Trade and Migration: Why Do Migrants Choose Small Countries?," MPRA Paper 66035, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Gil S. Epstein & Odelia Heizler (Cohen), 2016. "The formation of networks in the diaspora," International Journal of Manpower, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 37(7), pages 1136-1153, October.
    3. repec:eee:wdevel:v:109:y:2018:i:c:p:360-374 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Blumenstock, Joshua & Chi, Guanghua & Tan, Xu, 2019. "Migration and the Value of Social Networks," CEPR Discussion Papers 13611, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    5. Simone Bertoli & Ilse Ruyssen, 2018. "Networks and migrants’ intended destination," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 18(4), pages 705-728.
    6. Michel Beine, 2016. "The role of networks for migration flows: an update," International Journal of Manpower, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 37(7), pages 1154-1171, October.
    7. Manchin, Miriam & Orazbayev, Sultan, 2018. "Social networks and the intention to migrate," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 109(C), pages 360-374.
    8. repec:eee:reecon:v:73:y:2019:i:1:p:1-14 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Gil S. Epstein & Odelia Heizler (Cohen), 2016. "Networks in the Diaspora," Development Working Papers 389, Centro Studi Luca d'Agliano, University of Milano.
    10. Sophia Kan, 2016. "Improving health in Tajikistan: remittances trump other income," Courant Research Centre: Poverty, Equity and Growth - Discussion Papers 206, Courant Research Centre PEG.
    11. Gil S. Epstein & Odelia Heizler-Cohen, 2016. "The Formation of Immigrant Networks in the Short and the Long Run," Economies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 4(3), pages 1-16, July.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • D85 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Network Formation
    • C45 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods: Special Topics - - - Neural Networks and Related Topics

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