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RURAL‐URBAN MIGRATION AND SELF‐SELECTION IN TUNISIA

Riadh Ben Jelili () and Hassen Mzali

Papers in Regional Science, 1998, vol. 77, issue 4, 347-360

Abstract: ABSTRACT: With its theoretic robustness and intuitive appeal, the human capital model of labor migration has been successful in explaining several empirical regularities of the migration process. While adhering to a similar approach, the purpose of this article is to estimate, using survey data from Tunisia, a model of returns to rural‐urban migration which accounts for self‐selection of migrants. Of particular interest in this research is the sign and significance of the selectivity terms in the movers and the stayers group. The results lead to the conclusion that by purely statistical assessment the expected monetary gains effect is significantly different from zero, but that by economic considerations it is small. This low effect can be explained by the omission of other relevant variables from the analysis of rural‐urban migration in Tunisia. In the migrant‐earnings equation the selectivity variable is not significant, whereas there is a strong evidence of positive self‐selection in the earnings of nonmigrants. This finding supports the notion that nonmigrants in the [rural] population choose their status because they fail to perceive more favorable returns elsewhere.

Date: 1998
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https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1435-5597.1998.tb00721.x

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