Are young internal migrants ‘favourably’ selected? Evidence from four developing countries
Young people are more likely to migrate than older people. During the transition to adulthood, they make important choices regarding education, labour force participation, and family formation.
Using a unique panel dataset on youth born in 1994–95 in Ethiopia, India, Peru, and Vietnam, this paper investigates whether young migrants are ‘positively’ self-selected in observable characteristics, specifically on educational attainment.
Firstly, the author document patterns on prevalence, frequency, timing, reasons and streams of migration. Secondly, the factors associated with young people’s reasons for migrating are described. Results suggest that ‘favourable’ self-selection only holds for those moving for education: a year of schooling is associated with a higher probability of moving for studies, while an extra year of education is correlated with a lower probability of moving for family formation.
In sum, migrants are a heterogeneous group: there are systematic differences in the characteristics across them depending on their reasons for moving.