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Theories of International Migration: A Review and Appraisal

Douglas S. Massey, Joaquin Arango, Graeme Hugo, Ali Kouaouci, Adela Pellegrino and J. Edward Taylor
Population and Development Review
Vol. 19, No. 3 (Sep., 1993), pp. 431-466
Published by: Population Council
DOI: 10.2307/2938462
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2938462
Page Count: 36
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Theories of International Migration: A Review and Appraisal
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Abstract

This article surveys contemporary theories of international migration in order to illuminate their leading propositions, assumptions, and hypotheses. In doing so, it hopes to pave the way for a systematic empirical evaluation of their guiding tenets. The authors divide the theories conceptually into those advanced to explain the initiation of international migration and those put forth to account for the persistence of migration across space and time. The review suggests that, because they are specified at such different levels of analysis, the theories are not inherently logically inconsistent. The task of selecting between theories and propositions thus becomes an empirical exercise, one that must occur before a truly integrated theoretical framework can be fully realized.

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