After reading this article you will learn about:- 1. Meaning of Migration 2. Types of Migration 3. Concepts 4. Effects
Meaning of Migration:
Migration is the third factor for changes in the population, the other being birth rate and death rate. As compared to birth rate and death rate, migration affects the size of population differently. Migration is not a biological event like birth rate and death rate, but is influenced by the social, cultural, economic and political factors.
Migration is carried by the decision of a person or group of persons. The changes occurring in the birth rate and death rate do not affect the size and structure of the population on a large scale, while migration, at any time, may cause large scale changes in the size and structure of the population.
The study of migration is of vital importance because the birth rate, death rate and migration determine the size of population, the population growth rate and thus the structure of population. In addition, migration plays an important role in determining the distribution of population and supply of labour in the country.
Thus, the study of migration is also useful for formulating economic and other policies by the government, economists, sociologists, politicians, and planners along with demographers
Migration shows the trends of social changes. From the historical viewpoint during the process of industrialisation and economic development, people migrate from farms to industries, from villages to cities, from one city to another and from one country to another. In modern times, technological changes are taking place in Asia, Africa and Latin America due to which these regions are witnessing large-scale migration from rural to urban areas.
Economists are interested in the study of migration because migration affects the supply of skilled and semi-skilled labourers, development of industries and commerce causing changes in the employment structure of the migrated people. Formulation of economic policies has a close relation with the process of migration because migration affects the economic and social development of a country.
Out of the many side effects of the population growth in India and other developing countries, an important effect of industrialisation and economic development is the internal migration of the population on a large scale, which has drawn the attention of planners and formulaters of economic policies. Thus, migration is a demographic event, whose long term effects fall on the socioeconomic and cultural development of any region or country.
Migration is the movement of people between regions or countries. It is the process of changing one’s place of residence and permanently living in a region or country. According to the Demographic Dictionary of United Nations, “Migration is such an event in which people move from one geographical area to another geographical area. When people leaving their place of residence go to live permanently in another area then this is called migration.”
Migration may be permanent or temporary with the intention of returning to the place of origin in future.
Types of Migration:
Migration is of the following types:
(i) Immigration and Emigration:
When people from one country move permanently to another country, for example, if people from India move to America then for America, it is termed as Immigration, whereas for India it is termed as Emigration.
(ii) In-migration and Out-migration:
In-migration means migration occurring within an area only, while out-migration means migration out of the area. Both types of migration are called internal migration occurring within the country. Migration from Bihar to Bengal is in-migration for Bengal, while it is out- migration for Bihar.
(iii) Gross and Net Migration:
During any time period, the total number of persons coming in the country and the total number of people going out of the country for residing is called gross migration. The difference between the total number of persons coming to reside in a country and going out of the country for residing during any time period is termed as net migration.
(iv) Internal Migration and External Migration:
Internal migration means the movement of people in different states and regions within a country from one place to another. On the other hand, external or international migration refers to the movement of people from one country to another for permanent settlement.
Concepts Relating to Migration:
Besides, the following concepts are used in migration:
(i) Migration Stream:
Migration stream means the total number of people migrating from one region to another or from one country to another for residing during a time period. It is, in fact, related to the movement of people from a common area of origin to a common area of a destination. For example, migration of Indians to America during a time interval.
(ii) Migration Interval:
Migration may occur continuously over a period of time. But to measure it correctly, the data should be divided into intervals of one to five or more years. The division relating to a particular period is known as migration interval.
(iii) Place of Origin and Place of Destination:
The place which people leave is the place of origin and the person is called an out-migrant. On the other hand, the place of destination is the place where the person moves and the person is called an in-migrant.
Migrant is the labour which moves to some region or country for short periods of time, say several months or a few years. It is regarded as a secondary labour force.
Effects of Migration:
Internal migration affects the place where from people migrate and the place to which they migrate. When the migrants move from rural to urban areas, they have both positive and negative effects on the society and economy.
(i) Effects on Rural Areas:
Migration affects rural areas (the place of origin) in the following ways:
1. Economic Effects:
When population migrates from rural areas, it reduces the pressure of population on land, the per worker output and productivity on land increases and so does per capita income. Thus family income rises which encourages farmers to adopt better means of production thereby increasing farm produce.
Those who migrate to urban areas are mostly in the age group of 18-40 years. They live alone, work and earn and remit their savings to their homes at villages. Such remittances further increase rural incomes which are utilised to make improvements on farms which further raise their incomes. This particularly happens in the case of emigrants to foreign countries who remit large sums at home.
Moreover, when these migrants return to their villages occasionally, they try to raise the consumption and living standards by bringing new ideas and goods to their homes. Modern household gadgets and other products like TV, fridge, motor cycles, etc. have entered in the majority of rural areas of India where larger remittances flow from urban areas.
Further, with the migration of working age persons to urban areas the number of farm workers is reduced. This leads to employment of underemployed family members on the farm such as women, older persons and even juveniles.
Further, out-migration widens inequalities of income and wealth in rural area families which receive large remittances and their incomes rise. They make improvements on their farms which raise productivity and production. These further increase their incomes. Some even buy other farm lands. Thus such families become richer as compared to others, thereby widening inequalities.
2. Demographic Effects:
Migration reduces population growth in rural areas. Separation from wives for long periods and the use of contraceptives help control population growth. When very young males migrate to urban areas, they are so influenced by the urban life that they do not like to marry at an early age.
Their aim is to earn more, settle in any vocation or job and then marry. Living in urban areas makes the migrants health conscious. Consequently, they emphasise on the importance of health care, and cleanliness which reduces fertility and mortality rates.
3. Social Effects:
Migration also affects the social set-up of rural communities. It weakens the joint family system if the migrants settle permanently in urban areas. With intermingling of the migrants with people of different castes and regions in cities, they bring new values and attitudes which gradually change old values and customs of ruralites. Women play a greater role in the social setup of the rural life with men having migrated to towns.
(ii) Effects on Urban Areas:
Migration affects urban areas (or the place of destination) in the following ways:
1. Demographic Effects:
Migration increases the population of the working class in urban areas. But the majority of migrants are young men between the ages of 15 to 24 years who are unwed. Others above this age group come alone leaving their families at home.
This tendency keeps fertility at a lower level than in rural areas. Even those who settle permanently with their spouses favour small number of children due to high costs of rearing them. The other factor responsible for low fertility rate is the availability of better medical and family planning facilities in urban areas.
2. Economic Effects:
The effects of migration on income and employment in urban areas are varied depending upon the type of migrants. Usually the migrants are unskilled and find jobs of street hawkers, shoeshine boys, carpenters, masons, tailors, rickshaw pullers, cooks and other tradesmen, etc.
These are “informal sector” activities which are low paying. But, according to the ILO, the evidence suggests that the bulk of employment in the informal sector is economically efficient and profit-making. Thus such migrants earn enough to spend and remit to their homes.
Other migrants who are educated up to the secondary level find jobs as shophelpers, assistants, taxi drivers, repairing machines and consumer durables, marketing goods and in other informal activities that are small in scale, labour intensive and unregulated. Their earnings are sufficient to bring them in the category of a common urbanite with an income level higher than the unskilled workers.
Another class of migrants that is very small is of those who come for higher education in colleges and institutes to towns. They find good job in the “formal sector”, get good salaries, and follow a good standard of living. These are the persons who remit large sums to their homes and help in modernising the rural scenario.
(iii) Adverse Effects of Rural-Urban Migration:
Migration from rural to urban areas has a number of adverse effects. Towns and cities in which the migrants settle, face innumerable problems. There is the prolific growth of huge slums and shantytowns. These settlements and huge neighbourhoods have no access to municipal services such as clean and running water, public services, electricity, and sewage system.
There is acute housing shortage. The city transport system is unable the meet the demand of the growing population. There are air and noise pollutions, and increased crime and congestion. The costs of providing facilities are too high to be met, despite the best intentions of the local bodies.
Besides, there is massive underemployment and unemployment in towns and cities. Men and women are found selling bananas, groundnuts, balloons and other cheap products on pavements and in streets. Many work as shoeshines, parking helpers, porters, etc.
Thus, urban migration increases the growth rate of job seekers relative to its population growth, thereby raising urban supply of labour. On the demand side, there are no enough jobs available for the ruralities in the formal urban sector for the uneducated and unskilled rural migrants.
Consequently, this rapid increase in labour supply and the lack of demand for such labour lead to chronic and increasing urban unemployment and underemployment.