European Long-Term Migration Data: Overview and Evaluation of Existing Data Collection

Wils, A.B. (1993). European Long-Term Migration Data: Overview and Evaluation of Existing Data Collection. IIASA Working Paper. IIASA, Laxenburg, Austria: WP-93-028

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The problems of defining long-term migration are discussed. Long-term migrants fall into different categories -- e.g. legal, asylum seekers, and illegal -- which are not centrally registered. Many countries define long-term migration differently. Thus, migration data collected by countries is often not comparable. An overview is given of the national definitions of long-term migration. Two international efforts are selected to collect national migration data -- by the UN/ECE and by Eurostat -- and their data from 1990 are evaluated.

It is often found that the measurement of any one flow by the immigrant country and by the emigrant country differs considerably. As a matter of fact, only about 20% of the flows are roughly equally measured by the sending and the receiving country. A list of countries in the order of relative overcount (having larger numbers than the country on the other end of the flow) shows that Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark and Switzerland have the largest relative overcount, while South and East Europe have the most relative undercount in the west.

The statistics indicate that there is a tendency in some West European countries to overcount immigration and undercount emigration.

Item Type: Monograph (IIASA Working Paper)
Research Programs: World Population (POP)
Depositing User: IIASA Import
Date Deposited: 15 Jan 2016 02:02
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2021 17:14

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