Returning Home at Times of Trouble? Return Migration of EU Enlargement Migrants During the Crisis

28 Pages Posted: 12 Jan 2013

See all articles by Anzelika Zaiceva

Anzelika Zaiceva

University of Modena and Reggio Emilia; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Klaus F. Zimmermann

Global Labor Organization (GLO); UNU-MERIT; Maastricht University, Department of Economics; Free University Berlin; University of Bonn; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); Journal of Population Economics

Abstract

The eastern enlargements of the EU in 2004 and 2007 have stimulated the mobility of workers from the new EU8 and EU2 countries. A significant proportion of these migrants stayed abroad only temporarily, and the Great recession may have triggered return intentions. However, a return may be postponed if the economic situation in a sending region is persistently worse.This paper documents emerging evidence on return migration in post-enlargement Europe combining several data sources to describe the characteristics and selection of the returnees, as well as the determinants of return migration and potential re-migration decisions. The findings suggest that brain circulation rather than brain drain is relevant for several new member states and that returnees are most likely to migrate again. Moreover, the proportion of potential movers is larger in countries most affected by the crisis. Repeat and circular migration is expected to alleviate the potential negative impacts of the crisis, leading to a more efficient allocation of resources within the enlarged EU.

Keywords: return migration, EU Eastern enlargement, economic crisis

JEL Classification: F22, J61

Suggested Citation

Zaiceva, Anzelika and Zimmermann, Klaus F., Returning Home at Times of Trouble? Return Migration of EU Enlargement Migrants During the Crisis. IZA Discussion Paper No. 7111, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2199794

Anzelika Zaiceva (Contact Author)

University of Modena and Reggio Emilia ( email )

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Modena, Modena 42121
Italy

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

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Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Klaus F. Zimmermann

Global Labor Organization (GLO) ( email )

Bonn
Germany

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UNU-MERIT ( email )

Keizer Karelplein 19
Maastricht, 6211TC
Netherlands

Maastricht University, Department of Economics ( email )

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Maastricht, 6200MD
Netherlands

University of Bonn

Postfach 2220
Bonn, D-53012
Germany

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

Journal of Population Economics

Tiergartenstr. 17
D-69121 Heidelberg
Germany

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