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Circular Migration and Human Development


  • Kathleen Newland

    () (Migration Policy Institute)


This paper explores the human development implications of circular migration — both where it occurs naturally and where governments work to create it. The paper discusses various conceptions and definitions of circular migration, and concludes that circular migration is not intrinsically positive or negative in relation to human development; its impact depends upon the circumstances in which it occurs, the constraints that surround it and—above all—the degree of choice that individuals can exercise over their own mobility. The human-development lens distinguishes between de facto circular migration and circular migration that occurs within the parameters of government programs.

Suggested Citation

  • Kathleen Newland, 2009. "Circular Migration and Human Development," Human Development Research Papers (2009 to present) HDRP-2009-42, Human Development Report Office (HDRO), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), revised Oct 2009.
  • Handle: RePEc:hdr:papers:hdrp-2009-42

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Olivier Morand, 2004. "Economic growth, longevity and the epidemiological transition," The European Journal of Health Economics, Springer;Deutsche Gesellschaft für Gesundheitsökonomie (DGGÖ), vol. 5(2), pages 166-174, May.
    2. Gustav Ranis, Frances Stewart and Emma Samman, "undated". "Human Development: beyond the HDI," QEH Working Papers qehwps135, Queen Elizabeth House, University of Oxford.
    3. Enrico Spolaore & Romain Wacziarg, 2009. "The Diffusion of Development," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 124(2), pages 469-529.
    4. Leandro Conte & Giuseppe Della Torre & Michelangelo Vasta, 2007. "The Human Development Index in Historical Perspective: Italy from Political Unification to the Present Day," Department of Economics University of Siena 491, Department of Economics, University of Siena.
    5. José Cheibub & Jennifer Gandhi & James Vreeland, 2010. "Democracy and dictatorship revisited," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 143(1), pages 67-101, April.
    6. Felice Emanuele, 2005. "Il reddito delle regioni italiane nel 1938 e nel 1951. Una stima basata sul costo del lavoro," Rivista di storia economica, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 1, pages 3-30.
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    Cited by:

    1. Baruffaldi, Stefano H. & Di Maio, Giorgio & Landoni, Paolo, 2017. "Determinants of PhD holders’ use of social networking sites: An analysis based on LinkedIn," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 46(4), pages 740-750.
    2. Kourtit, Karima & Nijkamp, Peter & Gheasi, Masood, 2017. "Fortunado’s, Desperado’s and Clandestino’s in Diaspora Labour Markets: The Circular 'Homo Mobilis'," GLO Discussion Paper Series 39, Global Labor Organization (GLO).
    3. repec:krk:eberjl:v:3:y:2015:i:3:p:95-122 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. DIANI, Morad & GHIFFI, Noufel, 2012. "« Brain drain » vs. « Brain gain » ? Division internationale des connaissances et promesses de co-développement
      [“Brain drain” vs. “Brain gain”? International division of knowledge and promises of
      ," MPRA Paper 44317, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Wouterse, Fleur, 2012. "Migration and Rural Welfare: The Impact of Potential Policy Reforms in Europe," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 40(12), pages 2427-2439.

    More about this item


    Circular migration; dual citizenship; forced migrants; guest workers; labor markets; mobility; seasonal migration; temporary migration; visa regimes;

    JEL classification:

    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
    • F2 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business
    • F16 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade and Labor Market Interactions
    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • J0 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General

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