Population Research and Policy Review

, Volume 14, Issue 2, pp 215–232 | Cite as

The impact of migration on the nonmetropolitan population age structure, 1960–1990

  • Glenn V. Fuguitt
  • Timothy B. Heaton
Immigration And Internal Migration


In this paper we examine the short-run impact of migration on the age composition of nonmetropolitan areas. Changes in age structure can have important consequences at the local level, and the influence of migration is particularly notable because it is highly age-graded, with different migration patterns found in various types of nonmetropolitan communities. Here we compare the impact of migration on age structures in metropolitan and nonmetropolitan areas across the last three decades. Within nonmetropolitan areas we also compare counties with colleges, commuting counties, agricultural counties and retirement counties. We conclude that several factors influence the impact of migration on age structure. Impacts will be greater in smaller than in larger population groups, and in areas that specialize in economic functions that impinge on a particular age group. But in general, migration adds young people to metropolitan areas and older people to nonmetropolitan areas. Differential impacts may be lessened in periods, such as 1970–80, when substantial population redistribution was underway. Nevertheless, prior and present fertility and mortality trends, and the cumulative history of migration well exceed the impact of migration on age in any ten-year interval.

Key words

Age Elderly Impact Migration Nonmetropolitan 







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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Glenn V. Fuguitt
    • 1
  • Timothy B. Heaton
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Rural SociologyUniversity of WisconsinMadisonUSA
  2. 2.Department of SociologyBrigham Young UniversityProvoUSA

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