Internal Migration, International Migration, and Children’s Growth

Yao Lu, Columbia University

Due to increasing urbanization and globalization, parental emigration has become a common experience of childhood in many parts of the world. Emigration potentially confers both benefits and costs for children because of family disruption and remittances. The present study adopts a comparative perspective by assessing how the effect varies across migration streams (internal and international), and across two societies with different levels of socioeconomic development but both characterized by significant migration. Preliminary results suggest that children left behind by international migrants tend to have worse outcomes than children left behind by internal migrants. Comparing the two settings, the overall effect seems to depend on local circumstances.

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Presented in Session 32: The Impacts of Migration on Family Dynamics and Child Well-Being