Migration and Patriarchy: The Incorporation of Women into the Albanian International Migration Process

Guy Stecklov, Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Carlo Azzarri, World Bank Group
Calogero Carletto, World Bank Group
Benjamin Davis, Food and Agriculture Organization

This paper examines the causes and dynamics of the shift in the gender composition of migration from Albania. We use data on migration histories for family members since 1990. Because out-migration was practically non-existent before the end of the 1980s, the Albanian case provides a unique quasi-experimental setting. Based on discrete-time hazard models, the analysis shows an impressive expansion of female participation in international migration. Female migration, which is shown to be strongly associated with education, wealth, and social capital, appears responsive to economic incentives and constraints. Yet, through analysis of the dependency of female migration to the household demographic structure as well as the sensitivity of female migration to household-level shocks, we show that it is the households themselves that are the decision-making agents behind this economic calculus and there is little to suggest that increased female migration signals the emergence of female agency.

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Presented in Session 149: International Migration II