Intergenerational Transmission of “Migration Capital” and the Decision to Emigrate
This paper argues that intergenerational transmission of past accumulated ‘migration capital’ is a significant determinant of current decisions to migrate. Analysis of survey data confirms our hypothesis that past family migration experience increases a person’s current and future propensity to migrate; i.e. host country born children and grandchildren of former migrants are more likely to migrate themselves, compared to people without family migration experience. By contrast, a person’s own past migration experience does not augment current emigration decisions. The country of Latvia serves as an unusually instructive laboratory for our analysis due to the nature of its 1945-1991 immigration flows.
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