Chapter 9: Why do young Europeans stay at home? Including ‘stay–stay away’ factors in migration research
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This chapter analyses why intra-European migration remains rather low. Traditional migration models based on ‘push–pull’ factors attempt to explain migration from an economic perspective while relying on strict assumptions of individuals’ rationality and perfect information. The chapter integrates ‘push–pull’ factors that stimulate migration with ‘stay–stay away’ factors, which discourage migration. It suggests that migration decision is based on an evaluation of ‘push–pull’ incentives with regard to ‘stay–stay away’ incentives. The results confirm that ‘stay–-stay away’ factors contribute to the explanation of migration intentions. Individuals who score higher on the ’stay–stay away’ index are less likely to envisage migrating at some point in the future. Including both ‘push–pull’ and ‘stay–stay away’ factors in a single model confirms our supposition as to the complementary nature of both groups of predictors and points to the usefulness of a comprehensive ‘push–pull’-’stay–stay away’ framework. Furthermore, our results show that young Europeans are more likely to consider migration for non-economic reasons, while at the same time signalling reluctance to give up their economic security at home.

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