Local ties and family migration
Clara H. Mulder, University of Groningen
Gunnar Malmberg, Umeå University
The migration of couples and families has thus far been mainly approached from human-capital and gender perspectives. In this paper, we investigate the role of the male and female partner’s local ties in the likelihood of family migration. Our hypotheses are that local ties to work and family strongly decrease the likelihood of migrating; that given the dominating gender structures ties to the man’s work are more influential than ties to the woman’s work; and that ties to the woman’s family are more influential than ties to the man’s family. We use data from the unique ASTRID micro database for Sweden, based on administrative information about the entire Swedish population. The method is logistic regression analysis of moving a distance exceeding 50 kilometers, for two-gender couples who did not separate between December 2004 and December 2005. We find marked negative associations of working close to home, the presence of parents and siblings nearby, and whether someone lives near the place of birth, with the likelihood of migrating. The man’s ties to work seem to be more important to the likelihood of migrating than the woman’s, but we find hardly any gender differences in the impact of ties to family.