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Personality Traits, Migration Intentions, and Cultural Distance

Author

Listed:
  • Fouarge, Didier

    () (ROA, Maastricht University)

  • Özer, Merve Nezihe

    () (Maastricht University)

  • Seegers, Philipp K.

    () (Maastricht University)

Abstract

This paper investigates the relationship between Big Five personality traits and individuals' intentions to migrate in countries that vary in their culture. Using data collected from university students in Germany, we find that extraversion and openness are positively associated with migration intentions, while agreeableness, conscientiousness, and emotional stability negatively relate to migration intentions. Openness positively and extraversion negatively relate to the willingness to move to culturally distant countries after controlling for geographic distance and economic differences between countries. Using language as a cultural distance indicator provides evidence that extravert and conscientious individuals are less likely to prefer linguistically distant countries while agreeable individuals tend to consider such countries as potential destinations.

Suggested Citation

  • Fouarge, Didier & Özer, Merve Nezihe & Seegers, Philipp K., 2019. "Personality Traits, Migration Intentions, and Cultural Distance," IZA Discussion Papers 12444, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp12444
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    migration intentions; destination choice; cultural distance; Big Five personality traits;

    JEL classification:

    • D91 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Role and Effects of Psychological, Emotional, Social, and Cognitive Factors on Decision Making
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers
    • Z1 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics

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