Mendola, M. JDE 2008
Migration and technological change in rural households: Complements or substitutes?
In this paper we study the interrelationship between determinants of migration, conceived as a family strategy, and the potential impact of having a migrant household member on the people left behind. Labour migration is often related to poverty but, given its lumpy-investment nature, lack of resources may constitute both a motivation and a hurdle to migrate. We use a cross-sectional household survey from rural Bangladesh to test whether migration is a diversification strategy that enables sending households to uptake high-yielding seed technology. We account for heterogeneity of migration constraints by differentiating between temporary-domestic, permanent-domestic and international movement. We find that households able to engage in costly high-return migration (i.e. international migration) are more likely to employ modern farming technology, thereby achieving higher productivity. Poorer households, on the other hand, are unable to overcome the entry costs…
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