The Impact of Non-Cognitive Skills and Risk Preferences on Rural-to-Urban Migration: Evidence from Ukraine

40 Pages Posted: 18 Sep 2017

See all articles by Sinem Ayhan

Sinem Ayhan

IZA

Kseniia Gatskova

Osteuropa-Institut (OEI)

Hartmut Lehmann

University of Bologna - School of Economics, Management, and Statistics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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Abstract

This paper provides evidence on the impacts of non-cognitive skills and attitudes towards risk on the decision to migrate from rural to urban areas. Our analysis is based on a unique four-wave panel of Ukrainian Longitudinal Monitoring Survey for the period between 2003 and 2012. Adopting the Five Factor Model of personality structure, and using it in the evaluation of non-cognitive skills, our results suggest that such personality traits as openness to new experience and the willingness to take risks increase the probability of migration. On the other hand, the non-cognitive skills conscientiousness and extraversion are found to be negatively associated with the propensity to migrate. The effects are statistically and quantitatively significant, and mainly driven by movements from rural areas into cities. Our results are robust to several sensitivity checks, including tests for reverse causality.

Keywords: migration, non-cognitive skills, Big Five, risk attitudes

JEL Classification: J61, D03, D81, R23

Suggested Citation

Ayhan, Sinem and Gatskova, Kseniia and Lehmann, Hartmut F., The Impact of Non-Cognitive Skills and Risk Preferences on Rural-to-Urban Migration: Evidence from Ukraine. IZA Discussion Paper No. 10982. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3037863

Kseniia Gatskova

Osteuropa-Institut (OEI) ( email )

Landshuter Straße 4
Regensburg, 93047
Germany

Hartmut F. Lehmann

University of Bologna - School of Economics, Management, and Statistics ( email )

Piazza Scaravilli 1
40126 Bologna, fc 47100
Italy

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

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