Factors Affecting Whether Environmental Migration is Temporary or Permanent: Evidence from Bangladesh
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This study examines whether environmental migrants in Bangladesh move permanently or temporarily. The analyses are based on data collected in 2010 and 2011, and cover four themes, namely migrant characteristics, environmental change related factors, conflict and adaptation strategies, and social networks. The estimates obtained from binary logit models show that most sets of variables have statistically significant impacts on the temporary migration versus permanent migration decision. Females are more inclined to migrate temporarily, a finding which is consistent with prior studies that argued that female migration is one temporary household survival strategy in the face of an environmental crisis. The probability of intending to move temporarily is significantly affected by the prior occupational experience: Migrants who were previously engaged in agriculture or fishing are more inclined to migrate permanently. Those households who reported that they had lost assets due to environmental hazards are shown to have a higher probability of becoming permanent migrants. In contrast, loss of livestock and crop failure are associated with a greater likelihood of temporary migration. The empirical results reveal the groups that can be targeted in destination regions in settlement policy, and equally the groups whose return home can be facilitated once any immediate danger has passed.
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