Welcome to week 2

In week 1 we emphasised the importance of seeing international migration as a global phenomenon and not just as a process that moves from the Global South to the Global North. We also introduced the idea of push and pull factors as a first, elementary way of explaining migration.

During week 2 we will consider a range of theories that can assist us with understanding why migration starts, why it continues, and why a migration project does not necessarily envisage a new life in a destination country but can also often imply a return to the country of origin.

We start by looking at different economic theories - specifically neoclassical economics and the new economics of migration - and how these can explain why migration starts as the result of a choice.

We then describe dual labour market theory and world systems theory and how these can explain why migration arises as the consequence of structural factors.

We proceed to discuss the important role of networks and institutions in explaining why migration flows continue over a period of time.

Finally, we consider ways of interpreting different types of return migration and why these occur.

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This article is from the free online course:

Why Do People Migrate? Theories

European University Institute (EUI)