March 03, 2020
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Posted by NCID
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Migration is currently one of the issues with more attention at the international level, especially considering that migrants are around 3.5% of the global population and that several phenomena of forced migration are growing, which entails the objective of understanding its causes and implications. At the Navarra Center International Development, migration is a hot topic too. Actually, one of the papers presented at the recent NCID Workshop on Migration in November has been updated and presented again at the NCID by one of its coauthors, Tijan Bah, a job market candidate.

Bah is a Postdoctoral Scholar at NOVAFRICA in Nova School of Business and Economics, and presented the paper Why do People Migrate Irregularly? Evidence from a Lab in the Field Experiment last Tuesday, February 25. In the paper, which tries to find the reasons for irregular migration through a lab-in-the-field experiment in the rural Gambia, researchers introduce questions to the participants (mainly young men) such as if they want to migrate, how much money would they accept to migrate, and how much are would they accept to remain in their country.

The experiment shows that initially, 90% of the participants want to migrate and 46% would do it irregularly, but the key finding is that giving them further information like the probability of dying on their way or the one of getting a legal residence in the receiving country can change those percentages in order to increase or reduce migration. At the same time, Bah clarifies that to reduce migration, the focus should be not only giving the respective information but also alternatives such as incentives at the local level and the application of effective public policies.