PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to cover the literature on the role migrants networks in explaining aggregate migration flows between countries. The author emphasizes the specific role of family immigration policies. To that purpose, the author covers briefly the recent experience of seven receiving countries to highlight the importance of these policies in explaining part of the observed network elasticities.Design/methodology/approachThe author first provides a small review of the literature and the issues at stake. The author then provides an update of the estimates of the network elasticities using the data set on migration stocks and flows from Ozden et al. (2011). Using micro-founded gravity models, the author estimates the network elasticities and discusses the key driving mechanisms explaining their size as well the variation in the amplitude across categories of destination and over time. The author accounts for the issue of multilateral resistance to migration.FindingsThe author obtains estimates that are in line with the ones documented previously in the literature. The author finds that the role of networks in attracting migrants has increased after the 1970s. The author emphasizes the specific role of family immigration policies. To that purpose, the author covers briefly the recent experience of a set of receiving countries to highlight the importance of these policies in explaining part of the observed network elasticities.Originality/valueThis paper covers the literature on the role migrants networks in explaining aggregate migration flows between countries and obtain new estimates of network elasticities that vary over time and across types of destination countries.
international Journal of Manpower – Emerald Publishing
Published: Oct 3, 2016
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