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Measuring the balance of intra-regional migration


  • Tapan Biswas
  • Jolian McHardy


An original index is introduced for measuring the extent of the overall bilateral balance of migration among countries within a region which allows comparisons of the balance over time as well as between regions and various possible sub-regions. It is shown that having constructed the index it is also possible to establish a weighting of the contribution of each country to the overall degree of migration balance within a region. The new index is applied to three sub-groupings of the European Union (EU): (a) a mix of nine northern and southern EU15 countries; (b) seven northern EU15 countries; and, (c) four southern EU15 countries. It is shown that in each case migration in the 1990s was highly balanced and improving significantly over time. However, there was a substantial difference between the northern and southern countries with the former enjoying significantly higher overall balance in migration than the latter, although the rate of improvement in balance was much higher amongst the southern countries. Finally, whilst the UK and Portugal were persistently low contributors to the overall balance in EU migration, Germany's contribution was the highest.

Suggested Citation

  • Tapan Biswas & Jolian McHardy, 2005. "Measuring the balance of intra-regional migration," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(19), pages 2221-2230.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:applec:v:37:y:2005:i:19:p:2221-2230
    DOI: 10.1080/00036840500330532

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Tapan Biswas & Jolian McHardy, 2001. "On the intensity and balance of intra-European migration," International Economic Journal, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 18(4), pages 505-520.
    2. A. D. Roy, 1951. "Some Thoughts On The Distribution Of Earnings," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 3(2), pages 135-146.
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    Cited by:

    1. Udo Kreickemeier & Jens Wrona, 2017. "Two-Way Migration between Similar Countries," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 40(1), pages 182-206, January.
    2. Tapan Biswas & Jo McHardy & Michael Nolan, 2008. "Inter-regional Migration: The UK experience," Working Papers 2008003, The University of Sheffield, Department of Economics, revised Feb 2008.

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