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Migration in Kenya: beyond Harris-Todaro

Cem Oyvat () and Mwangi wa Gĩthĩnji

International Review of Applied Economics, 2020, vol. 34, issue 1, 4-35

Abstract: This paper examines the impact of agrarian structures on the migration behavior and destination of rural household heads and individuals in Kenya. To explore the complexity of migration we extend the standard Harris-Todaro framework to account for land inequality and size as well as type of destination. Using probit regressions, we show that Kenyan household heads born in districts with higher land inequality, smaller per capita land and lower per capita rural income are more likely to migrate. We show that for individuals whose incomes are squeezed by larger land inequality, migration from villages to smaller cities, and villages in different districts could be a preferable strategy to migrating to Greater Nairobi. The impact of land inequality is larger for male than female migration and insignificant for females’ rural-to-rural migration. Moreover, the level of education, age, marital status, gender, religion and distance to Nairobi play a role in migration behavior.

Date: 2020
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Working Paper: Migration in Kenya: beyond Harris-Todaro (2019) Downloads
Working Paper: Migration in Kenya: beyond Harris-Todaro (2017) Downloads
Working Paper: Migration in Kenya: Beyond Harris-Todaro (2017) Downloads
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DOI: 10.1080/02692171.2019.1620702

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