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Nonlinearities in Interregional Migration Behavior

Roberto Basile () and Jaewon Lim

International Regional Science Review, 2017, vol. 40, issue 6, 563-589

Abstract: Traditional “Marshallian†theories predict a linear relationship between internal migration and regional wage differentials. Using panel data on gross place-to-place migration flows in the United States, we estimate a semiparametric version of the modified gravity model and find evidence of a nonlinear effect of wage differentials in line with alternative theories of interregional migration, including the “option value of waiting†theory, liquidity constraints, and wealth-conditioned immobility. Traditionally, the migration decision process is believed to be mainly composed of two criteria: “whether to move†and “where to move.†However, the empirical evidence of nonlinearity found in this study supports the potential presence of another important decision criterion, “when to move†on interregional migration.

Keywords: migration; human spatial structure; spatial structure; demographic models; demographic analysis; methods; spatial interaction models; spatial analysis; nonlinearity; US metro areas (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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Handle: RePEc:sae:inrsre:v:40:y:2017:i:6:p:563-589