Emigration intentions: theory and evidence

Aleksandr Grigoryan, American University of Armenia

In this paper we derive testable hypotheses on the causal relationship between politico-economic factors and emigration intentions. The hypotheses are tested for the South Caucasian countries, using household level dataset for the period 2010 - 2013. The response of emigration intentions to a change in political factors is the largest in transition, rejecting the hypothesis that partial impacts can be ordered according to a politico-economic development stage. On the other hand, the response of emigration intentions to economic policy factors is effectively ordered. The paper suggests a novelty for a non-linear relationship between emigration intentions and the stage of development - political discontent need not be high in transition, but small perturbation in the development process may create a high resonance in emigration intentions.

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Presented in Session 49: New perspectives on emigration and return migration