The Role of Welfare Systems in Affecting Out-Migration: The Case of Central and Eastern Europe

Kureková, L. (2013). Welfare Systems as Emigration Factor: Evidence from the New Accession States. JCMS: Journal of Common Market Studies, 51(4), 721-739.

IMI Working Papers, 2011

31 Pages Posted: 21 Nov 2011 Last revised: 7 Mar 2014

See all articles by Lucia Mytna Kurekova

Lucia Mytna Kurekova

Slovak Governance Institute; Central European University

Date Written: September 23, 2011


This paper analyses the role of welfare systems in shaping migration patterns in Central and Eastern Europe over the transition process and after EU accession. It argues that states have played a crucial role in affecting migration by creating and widening opportunities for potential and actual migrants through welfare system policies. This explains why CEE countries where social spending figures have been lower, unemployment benefit schemes less extensive, and where labour market mismatches remained unaddressed, experienced greater out-migration. Investigating the role of sending states’ institutions in a comparative framework and over time, this paper analyses migration as part of broader social and economic processes and contributes to our understanding of how sending countries’ institutional factors affect out-migration.

Keywords: Central and Eastern Europe, labour markets, labour migration, countries of origin, welfare systems

Suggested Citation

Mytna Kurekova, Lucia, The Role of Welfare Systems in Affecting Out-Migration: The Case of Central and Eastern Europe (September 23, 2011). IMI Working Papers, 2011. Available at SSRN: or

Lucia Mytna Kurekova (Contact Author)

Slovak Governance Institute ( email )

Gajova 4
Bratislava, 81109

Central European University ( email )

Nador utca 9
Budapest, H-1051

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