Why are East Germans Not More Mobile? Analyzing the Impact of Local Networks on Migration Intentions

29 Pages Posted: 9 Dec 2010

See all articles by Peter Boenisch

Peter Boenisch

Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg

Lutz Schneider

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Date Written: November 1, 2010

Abstract

Despite poor regional labour market conditions East Germans exhibit a rather limited willing-ness of leaving their home region. Applying an IV ordered probit approach and using the German Socio Economic Panel (SOEP), we test a local network explanation of lower spatial mobility. Firstly, we find that membership in locally bounded social networks reduces regional mobility. Secondly, we show that native East Germans are more invested in this type of social networks than West Germans. Thirdly, after controlling for the social network effect the mobility gap between East and West substantially reduces. Thus, low regional labour mobility of East Germans is for a significant part attributable to local ties binding people to their home region.

Keywords: social networks, labour mobility

JEL Classification: Z13, R23, J61

Suggested Citation

Boenisch, Peter and Schneider, Lutz, Why are East Germans Not More Mobile? Analyzing the Impact of Local Networks on Migration Intentions (November 1, 2010). SOEPpaper No. 334. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1722509 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1722509

Peter Boenisch

Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg ( email )

Emil-Abderhalden-Str. 7
Halle an der Saale
06099 Halle (Saale), DE Sachsen-Anhalt 06099
Germany

Lutz Schneider (Contact Author)

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

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