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What is Migration? – Definition, Causes, Types, FAQs

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Migration can be defined as the movement of people from one region to another region of a state or a country by settling temporarily or permanently, for better living conditions. Most of the migrations are due to economic conditions, business opportunities, education, and employment.

Globally, migration is all over. The number of migrations overall has multiplied since World War II. During the pioneer period, millions of Indian workers were shipped off to different nations, for example, Mauritius, Caribbean islands, Fiji, and South Africa to fill in as plantation workers. In the twentieth century semi-skilled Indians, for example, craftsmen, dealers, and assembly line laborers relocated to adjoining nations like Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Brunei, and African nations. In 2005, 191 million individuals were considered living external of the nation of their country. On the off chance that the migrants resided in a similar spot, the international migrants would frame the fifth most populous country on the planet. Education became the most important in the world; many students are migrating for higher education. Getting a degree from the World’s top Universities has the highest recognition and value, and the chance of getting the best, highest-paid jobs. A large percentage of numbers increased, migrating for foreign studies. In today’s world, highly educated professionals like doctors, engineers, software engineers, management consultants, financial experts, media persons, etc., are migrating to other countries like the US, Canada, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, etc., for better opportunities, and they are the highest paid. 

Causes of Migration

  • In search of better economic conditions, employment, business opportunities, and education.
  • Migration to the towns in order to secure better living conditions, especially better schooling for their children.
  • To escape poor climate conditions such as drought, and natural disasters. 
  • As punishment for crimes committed, the criminals and banned from a country due to their work against government laws.
  • Migration as a result of enslavement.
  • To escape war, invasion, military takeover, etc.
  • To spread a religion. 
  • Migration to reunite with family, friends, marriages, etc. who have previously settled there. 
  • To find personal freedom, to live a certain lifestyle, to hold certain beliefs.

Types of Migration

In the view of the origin and destination of migrants

Internal migration

The movement of individuals within the geographical boundaries of a country or a state. Internal migration alludes to a change of residence within a state, region, city, or municipality.

Internal migration is additionally classified into four types.

Rural to Urban Migration The movement of population from rural areas to the nearby towns and cities mainly in search of better livelihood and standard of living, i.e., employment, education, and recreation facilities.

Rural to Rural Migration Mostly agricultural workers, because of marriages, and sometimes looking for land for cultivation.

Urban to Urban Migration The relocation from one metropolitan community to the next looking for more significant compensation and another market for business potential opens doors.

Urban to Rural Migration The movement from urban areas or cities to rural areas to get freed off the urban problems like air pollution, overcrowding, noise pollution, and returning to their native place after retirement from jobs. 

International migration

This alludes to a change of residence over national boundaries. A global migrant is somebody who moves to an alternate country. 

International migrants are additionally classified as

  1. Legal immigrants are the individuals who moved with the lawful authority of the beneficiary country.
  2. Unlawful immigrants are individuals who moved without lawful authorization.
  3. Refugees are those who crossed a worldwide limit to get away from abuse.

In view of the time of stay of migrants in the region

  • Short-term migration: The migrants stay outside just for a brief length prior to getting back to their place. Examples: Tourists, business trips.
  • Long-term migration: The migrants stay outside, essentially, for a couple of years. Examples: Companies send their employees for projects and students for education.
  • Seasonal migration: Usually, a group of people moves from their local spots during a specific season and return after the finish of that season. Agriculture-based labor is an example of seasonal migration.

In view of the readiness of the individuals for migration

Voluntary migration: If the movement happens on migrant choice, drive and want to reside in a good place. Example: Business company CEOs.

Involuntary migration: If the relocation happens against the desire of migrants, it is called involuntary migration. Example: Refuges.

Positive side of migration

  • Migrants send money to their homes, helping in the growth of the economy of the region. 
  • International Indian migrants are one of the major sources of foreign exchange in India.
  • States like Punjab, Kerala, and Tamil Nadu receive a huge amount of money from their international migrants. 
  • Green revolution in Punjab, and Haryana result because of people’s migration from Uttar Pradesh, and Bihar. 
  • Leads to the balanced distribution of the population according to resources within a country. 
  • Migrants act as a bridge of social change in rural areas. 
  • Exposure to new technologies and learning the importance of girls’ education can greatly affect the changes in orthodox families.
  • Intermixing of people from diverse cultures and respecting each other. 
  • The mindset among people changes because of exposure.

Negative side consequences

  • Overcrowding is one of the major negative impacts on the metropolitan cities of India due to migration. Resulting in many negative side effects.
  • The development of slums in industrially developed states is another major negative consequence.
  • Shortage of skilled labor because most migrate to urban areas. 
  • Under-development of rural regions due to lack of skilled people and economy of the region.  
  • Imbalances in sex ratio due to large male migration. 
  • Women in the rural areas will have more vulnerability, leaving with extra pressure when men are away from home. 

Environmental consequences of migration

  • Overcrowding of people due to rural-urban migration has put pressure on the existing social and physical infrastructure in the urban areas
  • Formation of slum colonies in the middle of cities.
  • Over-exploitation of natural resources.
  • Metropolitan cities are facing the real problem of groundwater depletion. 
  • Air pollution, and emission of carbon gases due to an increase in vehicles for transportation in urban areas.
  • Proper disposal of sewage will be a problem.
  • Difficult in management of solid wastes.
  • Land Pollution & problem of garbage disposal.
  • Deforestation, cutting down the trees for expansion and construction.

Frequently Asked Questions

Question 1: What are the causes of rural and urban migration?


Rural to Urban migration is a very common migration involving people from rural areas moving to urban cities and towns in search of opportunities. People in search of work and jobs come to urban areas to earn money. Families come to settle down for better education and environment for their children. People come to cities for better business opportunities, for selling their products and get reorganization, establish their family businesses. Skilled laborers sell their art of work and get hired in a good industry. People come for the standard of living conditions, and the availability of services and goods.

Question 2: What is emigration, and how does it affect? 


Emigration implies moving from the origin country with the expectation to settle down somewhere else. It is particularly, relocation from your nation, to get comfortable in another. The relocation influences loss of talented work, fall in demand, and economy of products and local region. Furthermore, influences the kids, families, and older individuals abandoned as they don’t get appropriate help.

Question 3: What are the push and pull factors of brain drain?


There are different reasons for brain drain. The main causes include looking for employment or higher salaries, political instability, and seeking a better-quality standard of life. Reasons for brain drain can be comprehensively ordered into push factors and pull factors.

Push Factors: Push factors force the people to move willfully and in numerous cases, they are constrained on the grounds that they risk something assuming they stay, e.g., clashes, starvation, invasion, etc.

Pull Factors: Pull factors are those variables in the objective nation that draw in the individual or gathering to leave their home. These are the positive attributes of the rich and developed country from which the migrants might want to benefit.

Question 4: What are the advantages of migration to the destination country?


The major advantage is the rise in the economic state of the country. High investments from multinational companies. Therefore, an increase in the employment rate. Raise infrastructures and availability of services and commodities. Increase in land value. Income profits for the local business people and local people earning money from leasing or renting their homes. Availability of labor for different services at low rates or wages. Skilled Labor contributes to the knowledge and production in the interest of the country.

Question 5: What is spatial variation in migration? 


A spatial variation is a difference in population, density, or a number of populations in a region. Internal migration is most common in India. Internal migration is different from state to state. The highest numbers of net in-migrants states are Maharashtra, Delhi, Gujarat, and Haryana. Uttar Pradesh and Bihar have the largest or highest number of out-migrants. Greater Mumbai received the largest number of intra-state in-migrants. 

Question 6: How is an enumeration of migration in the census of India?


The census of India records four types of information: 

  • Place of birth 
  • Duration of stay at the place of enumeration.
  • Place of last residence.
  • Reasons for migration from a place of the last residence.

Question 7: What are the streams of migration? 


There are four streams under the internal migration: 

  1. Rural to rural, (R-R).
  2. Rural to urban, (R-U).
  3. Urban to urban, (U-U)
  4. Urban to rural, (U-R).

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Last Updated : 02 Aug, 2022
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