Internal Migration in Israel
This paper characterizes families that changed their locality of residence within Israel - internal migration. The analysis draws on a nation-wide sample of households in 1983 and 1995, combining the characteristics of the migrants with those of the localities of origin and destination. The findings indicate that: internal migration is of significant scope with 17 percent of the families examined changing their locality; the likelihood of migrating rises with income and educational attainment, and declines with age up to a certain point, after which the latter trend is reversed; localities differ substantially in their balance of migration and the characteristics of the migrants. We further analyze two important processes that have attracted considerable public attention: the rise of the suburbs, and the weakening of the development towns. We find that strong populations leave the metropolitan areas - in particular, the strongest move to affluent suburbs and rural communities. We also document a significant net flow out of the development towns, especially among young well-educated couples. Those who leave the development towns differ in their destination: Many of those leaving the development towns in the north stay in the region - the strongest of whom move to rural communities there - while among those leaving the towns in the south, a larger fraction moves to the center of the country. The net negative migration balance in the development towns is all the more noteworthy considering the longstanding policy to strengthen these towns and the periphery in general. The flow of strong families - from the metropolitan areas as well as from the development towns - to smaller and more homogeneous localities has important policy implications regarding the rise in disparities among localities.
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