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International Migratory Movements. The Physiology of a System


  • Massimo Livi-Bacci


In the 21st century the idea has gained ground that large-scale migration is not a major engine driving society but, rather, an anarchic component of social change, a misfitting tile in the mosaic, background noise breaking into the even hum of social life. And yet the ability to move and migrate is an essential human prerogative - a vital, physiological mechanism in the life of the community. Individual choices, the fitness of the migrants, selective processes and policy have all had deep-reaching impact on international migratory movements in the history of mankind, with complex outcomes for the success of migration. Some examples from the distant past and our own day illustrate the various models and paradigms at the root of international movements that are not extraneous but indeed inherent to the social system.

Suggested Citation

  • Massimo Livi-Bacci, 2010. "International Migratory Movements. The Physiology of a System," QA - Rivista dell'Associazione Rossi-Doria, Associazione Rossi Doria, issue 3, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:rar:journl:0187

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    International migrations; Historical migrations; Darwinism; Reproductive fitness;

    JEL classification:

    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • N30 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - General, International, or Comparative
    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration


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