Social Indicators Research

, Volume 28, Issue 2, pp 157–171 | Cite as

Rethinking measures of migration: On the decomposition of net migration

  • Omer R. Galle
  • Jeffrey A. Burr
  • Lloyd B. Potter


The purpose of this paper is to “resurrect” the measure of net migration and defend its continued use under specific research circumstances, despite the current dissatisfaction with the measure as expressed by some scholars. We employ data from the 1980 Census of Population to compare five measures of migration, including net migration rates, in- and out-migration rates, migration efficiency ratios and migration turnover rates. We demonstrate the additivity of in- and out-migration rates with net migration rates and migration turnover rates. Also, we show how the migration efficiency ratio and turnover rates are conceptually and mathematically related. Finally, a simple multivariate model is estimated to show how regression coefficients from in-and out-migration rate models are related to net migration and migration turnover rates.


Rate Model Regression Coefficient Multivariate Model Turnover Rate Migration Rate 
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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Omer R. Galle
    • 1
  • Jeffrey A. Burr
    • 2
  • Lloyd B. Potter
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Sociology, Population Research CenterUniversity of TexasAustinUSA
  2. 2.Department of SociologyState University of New York at BuffaloBuffaloUSA
  3. 3.Emory University School of Public HealthAtlantaUSA

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