Determinants of Female Migration – The Case of German NUTS 3 Regions

Our study examines the regional patterns and determinants of migration flows of young women. At the NUTS-3 regional level, i.e. the district level (Kreise), the German internal migration flows of the year 2005 are explored. From descriptive statistics it can be seen that peripheral regions in East Germany face the strongest migration deficit with respect to young women, whereas agglomerations in West Germany but also in the East benefit from an intense migration surplus within this group. An econometric analysis of determinants of regional migration flows gives evidence of the importance of labour market, family-related and educational migration motives. Generally speaking, young women tend to choose regions with good income and job opportunities, in addition they seem to be attracted by regions enabling an appropriate balance between family and career. Furthermore the existence of excellent educational facilities is a significant influence for young women’s migration. This educationally motivated type of migration generates a long lasting effect on the regional migration balance, especially when the educational opportunities in the destination region are associated with adequate career perspectives for high qualified female graduates. In view of considerable losses due to migration, the study shows various options for action. An important course of action is to incorporate policy measures improving regional employment and income opportunities. Secondly, extending vocational and academic offers addressed to women seems to be a suitable way to stimulate women’s immigration. Moreover, enhancing the social infrastructure, which contributes to a satisfactory work life balance, might attract young women or at least reduce the number of them leaving a region.

14. November 2007

Authors Alexander Kubis Lutz Schneider

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