Migrant intentions to return: The role of migrant social networks

Cátia Batista, Francesco Cestari

Research output: Working paper


Social ties are potentially an important determinant of migrants’ intentions to return to their home country. This relationship has, however, not been addressed in the economics literature on international migration. This study examines the absolute and relative importance of migrant social networks, at both destination and origin, on migrant return intentions. Using rich data on social networks of immigrants, we explore the effects of heterogeneous characteristics of social network members on different time horizons for return. After controlling for unobserved heterogeneity and reverse causality biases, we find that the social network at home seems to be the most important determinant of the migrant’s intention to return home within five to ten years.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages32
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2016

Publication series

NameNova Africa Working Paper Series
ISSN (Print)2183-0843


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