Economic integration and ties to origin as determinants of migrant remittances among Senegalese immigrants in Spain: a longitudinal approach

by José Ignacio Carrasco

Institution: Stockholm University
Year: 2015
Keywords: Migration; Remittances; Transnational; Longitudinal; Senegal; Spain; Social Sciences; Sociology; Samhällsvetenskap; Sociologi
Record ID: 1336176
Full text PDF: http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:su:diva-115844


Background: The increased amount and diversification of migration flows to Europe are shaping new contexts forthe study of determinants of remittance-sending. Senegalese migration in Spain is one important case,because has increased its presence among other groups in the country and has different characteristics(e.g. younger age structure) compared to Senegalese migrants in Europe. This paper addresses aresearch challenge which can be framed in the three following aspects. First, it analyzes the migrant’sremittance behavior of a particular group of migrants in a specific national context. Second, itacknowledges remittances as transnational practices determined by factors related to incorporationinto host society and ties at origin. Thirdly, the paper provides a longitudinal approach which looks atmigration histories and changes in remittance-sending over time. Objective: The main objective of this paper consists on disentangling the way in which migrant’s remittancebehavior is affected by changes, over time, in individual characteristics (e.g. gender, education),economic integration, (e.g. employment status), and their ties at origin (e.g. family reunification).Thus, there are two research questions to be answered, namely: how are the trajectories of migrantremittances deployed since their arrival into Europe? And, how are these trajectories affected byindividual and family characteristics, as well as economic integration over time? Methodology: The paper is based on retrospective data from the Migration between Africa and Europe (MAFE) andthe Migrations Between Senegal and Spain (MESE) projects. The analysis of determinants ofremittance-sending is divided in two parts. First, a multivariate logistic regression which analyzes theodds of sending remittances (or logit) at any year since arrival into Europe is carried out. Secondly,event history analysis is used to explore the risk of initiating remittance-sending for the first time andthe risk of remittance-sending termination, respectively. In particular, a discrete-time logistic model isperformed to analyze these two processes. Results: Results indicate that despite having arrived relatively recently to Europe, lower educationalattainments and less access to the labour market, compared to other important destinations (e.g.France, Italy), the great majority of Senegalese migrants in Spain start sending remittances duringtheir first years of arrival. Once initiated, international money transfers are kept over time, as morethan two thirds of remitters maintain this economic flow over their stay. In this sense, empiricalevidence of this paper confirms remittances as an important aspect in South-North migration flows,both in terms of the proportion of migrants sending remittances and as a sustained transnationaleconomic practice.