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Climate instability and international migration


  • Mathilde MAUREL

    () (Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne CNRS - Université Paris 1)

  • Michele TUCCIO



The importance of international migration for its economic and social implications is nowadays widely acknowledged both in the academic literature and advocacy reports. Recently the debate has stimulated the inclusion of environmental factors into the possible explanations of migration, in order to account for the specificity of south-south migration. To assess the indirect linkages between climate change, agricultural share over GDP and migration, this study exploits an instrumental variable approach, using data for 108 countries for the period 1960-2000. Our model emphasises that anomalies in temperature and rainfalls accelerate the urbanization process, implying a decline in the agricultural share in the GDP. Within-borders migration from rural to urban area leads workers to engage in cross-border migration. We find that cross-border migration induced by a two standard deviation increase in precipitation (temperature) anomalies represents up to 8% (4%) of total migration.

Suggested Citation

  • Mathilde MAUREL & Michele TUCCIO, 2013. "Climate instability and international migration," Working Papers P78, FERDI.
  • Handle: RePEc:fdi:wpaper:733

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    Cited by:

    1. Isaure Delaporte & Mathilde Maurel, 2018. "Adaptation to climate change in Bangladesh," Climate Policy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 18(1), pages 49-62, January.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming


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