The Annals of Regional Science

, Volume 59, Issue 2, pp 535–569 | Cite as

A model of interregional migration under the presence of natural resources: theory and evidence from Russia

  • Sascha SardadvarEmail author
  • Elena Vakulenko
Original Paper


Internal net-migration rates in Russia are negatively correlated with regional labour shares in mining. In order to explain this phenomenon theoretically and empirically, Crozet’s (J Econ Geogr 4:439–458, 2004) theoretical model is augmented by the mining of natural resources to allow for exogenous market developments and spatially bounded production. The model is directly transformed into an econometric panel specification and tested for 78 Russian regions for the observation period 2004–2010. The empirical results show that the mining of natural resources attracts internal migrants, while regional price-indexes have unexpected positive effects.

JEL Classification

F12 R12 R23 



The present study was conducted at the Vienna University of Economics and Business, the National Research University Higher School of Economics, Moscow, and WPZ Research Vienna. The authors would like to thank two anonymous reviewers of the paper’s present version as well as three anonymous reviewers of a previous version for their helpful comments.


  1. Andrienko Y, Guriev S (2004) Determinants of interregional mobility in Russia: evidence from panel data. Econ Transit 12:1–27CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bentolila S, Dolado JJ (1991) Mismatch and internal migration in Spain 1962–86. In: Padoa Schioppa F (ed) Mismatch and labour mobility. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, pp 182–234CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Biagi B, Faggian A, McCann P (2011) Long- and short-distance migration in Italy: the role of economic, social and environmental characteristics. Spat Econ Anal 6:111–131CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Borjas GJ (2010) Labor economics, 5th edn. McGraw-Hill, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  5. Bradshaw MJ (2006) Observations on the geographical dimensions of Russia’s resource abundance. Eurasian Geogr Econ 47:724–746CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bradshaw MJ, Lynn NJ (1998) Resource-based development in the Russian far east: problems and prospects. Geoforum 29:375–392CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Brown AN (1997) The economic determinants of internal migration flows in Russia during transition, William Davidson Institute Working Papers 89Google Scholar
  8. Crozet M (2004) Do migrants follow market potentials? An estimation of a new economic geography model. J Econ Geogr 4:439–458CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Dixit AK, Stiglitz JE (1977) Monopolistic competition and optimum product diversity. Am Econ Rev 67:297–308Google Scholar
  10. Etzo I (2011) The determinants of the recent interregional migration flows in Italy: a panel data analysis. J Reg Sci 51:948–966CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Gerber T (2006) Regional economic performance and net migration rates in Russia, 1993–2002. Int Migr Rev 40:661–697CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Grandstaff PJ (1975) Recent Soviet experience and Western ‘laws’ of population migration. Int Migr Rev 9:479–497CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Greenwood M (1975) Research on internal migration in the United States: a survey. J Econ Lit 13:397–433Google Scholar
  14. Guriev S, Vakulenko E (2015) Breaking out of poverty traps: internal migration and interregional convergence in Russia. J Comp Econ 43:633–649CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Heleniak T (1997) Internal migration in Russia during the economic transition. Post-Sov Geogr Econ 38:81–104Google Scholar
  16. Heleniak T (1999) Out-migration and depopulation of the Russian North during the 1990s. Post-Sov Geogr Econ 40:155–205Google Scholar
  17. Hirschman AO (1958) The strategy of economic development. Yale University Press, New HavenGoogle Scholar
  18. Karachurina LB, Mkrtchyan NV (2014) ВнутрироссиЙские миграции [Internal migration in Russia]. In: Vishnevskii AG (ed) Население России 2012:  двадцатыЙ ежегодныЙ демографическиЙ доклад [The Population of Russia 2012: The Twentieth Annual Demographic Report]. Higher School of Economics Publishing House, Moscow, pp 336–338Google Scholar
  19. Krugman P (1980) Scale economies, product differentiation, and the pattern of trade. Am Econ Rev 70:950–59Google Scholar
  20. Krugman P (1991a) Increasing returns and economic geography. J Polit Econ 99:483–499CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Krugman P (1991b) Geography and trade [reprint 1992]. Leuven University Press, Leuven, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
  22. Kumo K (1997) Economic system conversion and migration transition in Russia. Rev Urban Reg Dev Stud 9:20–36CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Mitchneck B, Plane DA (1995) Migration and the quasi-labor market in Russia. Int Reg Sci Rev 18:267–288CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Pons J, Paluzie E, Silvestre J, Tirado DA (2007) Testing the new economic geography: migrations and industrial agglomerations in Spain. J Reg Sci 47:289–313CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Sardadvar S, Vakulenko E (2016) Interregional migration within Russia and its east-west divide: evidence from spatial panel regressions. Rev Urban Reg Dev Stud 28:123–141CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Stock JH, Watson MW (2008) Heteroskedasticity-robust standard errors for fixed effects panel data regression. Econometrica 76:155–174CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Tompson W (2005) The political implications of Russia’s resource-based economy. Post-Sov Affairs 21:335–359CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Vakulenko E, Mkrtchyan NV, Furmanov K (2011) Econometric analysis of internal migration in Russia. Monten J Econ 7:21–33Google Scholar
  29. White A (2007) Internal migration trends in Soviet and post-Soviet European Russia. Eu Asia Stud 59:887–911CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.WPZ ResearchViennaAustria
  2. 2.National Research University Higher School of EconomicsMoscowRussian Federation

Personalised recommendations