Migration destination choice: a place utility approach in Burkina Faso

Sabine J.F. Henry, Facultés Universitaires Notre-Dame de la Paix , Belgium

Characteristics of places of residence are known to play a major role in the migration decision-making process. In this study, we explore the extent to which geographic, economic and environmental characteristics determine the destination choice of migrants in Burkina Faso. More precisely, two sets of hypotheses were tested: first, that a favourable natural environment is a major pull factor for migrants; and second, that economic diversification attracts migrants. Research is based upon multi-level event-history analysis using an exceptional set of retrospective data, including a national survey on migration, a longitudinal community survey and other geo-coded data (e.g. rainfall data). By introducing characteristics at the origin and at the destination in the same random utility model, this study compares push and pull effects and shows that people seem to include rainfall conditions in their choice of destination only in case of long-distance movement. Mixed results are found for economic factors.

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Presented in Session 41: Factors affecting destination choices of internal migrants