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Agency, Education and Networks: Gender and International Migration from Albania

  • Guy Stecklov

    (Hebrew University, Jerusalem, Israel)

  • Calogero Carletto

    (World Bank)

  • Benjamin Davis

    (Agricultural and Development Economics Division, Food and Agriculture Organization)

  • Carlo Azzarri

    (World Bank, Washington, DC)

Our paper examines the causes and dynamics of the shift in the gender composition of migration, and more particularly, in the access of women to migration opportunities and decision making. We do this in the context of Albania, a natural laboratory for studying migration developments given that out-migration was practically eliminated from the end of WWII to the end of the 1980s. We use micro-level data from the Albania 2005 LSMS including migration histories for family members since migration began. Our analysis, based on discrete-time hazard models, shows an impressive expansion of female participation in international migration. Female migration, which we find to be strongly associated with education, wealth, and social capital, appears responsive to economic incentives and constraints. Yet, using unique data on the dependency of female migration to the household demographic structure as well as the sensitivity of female migration to household-level shocks, we show that it is the households themselves that are the decision-making agents behind this economic calculus and there is little to suggest that increased female migration signals the emergence of female agency.

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Paper provided by Agricultural and Development Economics Division of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO - ESA) in its series Working Papers with number 08-02.

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Length: 34 pages
Date of creation: 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:fao:wpaper:0802
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  1. Mckenzie, David & Rapoport, Hillel, 2007. "Network effects and the dynamics of migration and inequality: Theory and evidence from Mexico," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(1), pages 1-24, September.
  2. B. Davis & P. Winters, 2001. "Gender, Networks and Mexico-US Migration," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 38(2), pages 1-26.
  3. Rosenzweig, Mark R & Stark, Oded, 1989. "Consumption Smoothing, Migration, and Marriage: Evidence from Rural India," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(4), pages 905-26, August.
  4. Sara Curran & Estela Rivero-Fuentes, 2003. "Engendering migrant networks: The case of Mexican migration," Demography, Springer, vol. 40(2), pages 289-307, May.
  5. Winters, Paul C. & de Janvry, Alain & Sadoulet, Elisabeth, 1999. "Family And Community Networks In Mexico-U.S. Migration," Working Papers 12907, University of New England, School of Economics.
  6. Kaivan Munshi, 2003. "Networks In The Modern Economy: Mexican Migrants In The U.S. Labor Market," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 118(2), pages 549-599, May.
  7. Marcela Cerrutti & Douglas Massey, 2001. "On the auspices of female migration from Mexico to the United States," Demography, Springer, vol. 38(2), pages 187-200, May.
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