Why did Swedish regional net migration rates fall in the 1970s? The role of policy changes versus structural change, 1945–1985

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TY - JOUR

T1 - Why did Swedish regional net migration rates fall in the 1970s?

T2 - The role of policy changes versus structural change, 1945–1985

AU - Molinder, Jakob

PY - 2018

Y1 - 2018

N2 - The relationship between local labour market conditions and regional migration has been widely discussed within research. In Sweden, where interregional migration reached a peak in the 1960s but decreased substantially in the 1970s, the role of economic policy has been especially contended in light of the Swedish model and its official stress on regional mobility. By collecting and creating a new and unique dataset on net-migration, vacancy rates, employment and labour income by county, the pattern of interregional migration in Sweden is analysed over a period of time that also covers the early postwar period (1945– 1985), allowing for a detailed evaluation of the drivers of migration at different times. My results suggest that there was no significant change over time in the responsiveness of migration to local labour market conditions. The changing patterns of regional migration were therefore more likely the result of changes in the pace and direction of structural change. I discuss the implications of these results for previous accounts of the Swedish model and of the decline in migration after 1970.

AB - The relationship between local labour market conditions and regional migration has been widely discussed within research. In Sweden, where interregional migration reached a peak in the 1960s but decreased substantially in the 1970s, the role of economic policy has been especially contended in light of the Swedish model and its official stress on regional mobility. By collecting and creating a new and unique dataset on net-migration, vacancy rates, employment and labour income by county, the pattern of interregional migration in Sweden is analysed over a period of time that also covers the early postwar period (1945– 1985), allowing for a detailed evaluation of the drivers of migration at different times. My results suggest that there was no significant change over time in the responsiveness of migration to local labour market conditions. The changing patterns of regional migration were therefore more likely the result of changes in the pace and direction of structural change. I discuss the implications of these results for previous accounts of the Swedish model and of the decline in migration after 1970.

KW - Swedish model

KW - regional migration

KW - labour markets

KW - economic restructuring

U2 - 10.1080/03585522.2018.1433228

DO - 10.1080/03585522.2018.1433228

M3 - Article

VL - 66

SP - 91

EP - 115

JO - Scandinavian Economic History Review

JF - Scandinavian Economic History Review

SN - 1750-2837

IS - 1

ER -