The Macro Sources of Recent Mexican Migration

Erin R. Hamilton, University of Texas at Austin
Andres Villarreal, University of Texas at Austin

Macro social, economic and demographic forces determined the size and duration of European emigration flows (Hatton & Williamson, 1994). Various theories debate the shape these relationships take in contemporary migrant-sending, developing countries (e.g., Sassen, 1988; Massey, 1988). This debate is particularly relevant for Mexico, where migration flows into the United States continue at high rates. Most research on the causes of migration out of Mexico, however, focuses on individual risk of migration, and macro social, economic, and demographic forces are less determinant of individual migration than they are of aggregate flows. Thus, we use relatively new data on municipal migration rates from Mexico to explore the relationship between international migration flows and various macro social, economic, and demographic factors. Specifically, we look at the relationship between migration out of Mexican municipalities between 1995 and 2000 and municipal levels of economic development, foreign direct investment, government spending, and domestic migration.

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Presented in Poster Session 6