Intergenerational altruism explains between 24 and 42% of the Northward migration!
Read more in:
John Gardner: Intergenerational altruism in the migration decision calculus: evidence from the African American Great Migration, forthcoming in the Journal of Population Economics.
GLO Fellow John Gardner
Author Abstract: It is widely believed that many migrations are undertaken at least in part for the benefit of future generations. To provide evidence on the effect of intergenerational altruism on migration, I estimate a dynamic residential location choice model of the African American Great Migration in which individuals take the welfare of future generations into account when deciding to remain in the Southern USA or migrate to the North. I measure the influence of altruism on the migration decision as the implied difference between the migration probabilities of altruistic individuals and myopic ones who consider only current-generation utility when making their location decisions. My preferred estimates suggest that intergenerational altruism explains between 24 and 42% of the Northward migration that took place during the period that I study, depending on the generation.