Migration motivation of agriculturally educated rural youth: The case of Russian Siberia

TitelMigration motivation of agriculturally educated rural youth: The case of Russian Siberia
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsBednarikova, Z, Bavorova, M, Ponkina, EV
JournalJournal of Rural Studies
Start Page99
Date Published06/2016

The migration of young people from rural areas is common in all agricultural regions of Russia, and Altai
Krai, located in southwestern Siberia, is no exception. Out-migration, aversion to working in agriculture
and the aging of farmers and farm managers are serious problems that raise questions about who will
work in agriculture in the future. This paper aims to investigate factors that affect the decisions of
agricultural students from Altai Krai to out-migrate or to return to their rural parental municipalities
after finishing their university studies.We conducted a questionnaire survey of students at the Altai State
Agrarian University in Barnaul and analyzed their migration intentions using a logit regression model.
Migration motivation is studied in relation to personal and family background characteristics, employment
expectations and quality of life, with a particular focus on references to agriculture. Our results
show that the probability of leaving the parental municipality decreases if i) the respondent's parents
support the study of agriculture, ii) the respondent's family owns agricultural land, iii) the respondent
intends to work in agriculture, and iv) the respondent believes that it is not difficult to establish one's
own business in the parental municipality.Women are more likely than men to leave their rural parental
municipalities, and the probability of out-migration increases as respondents' life satisfaction increases.
Our findings indicate that agricultural roots in the respondent's family stimulate young university
graduates to return home and continue in the family tradition. Some of the factors that push young
people, especially women, to out-migrate to cities (such as territorial isolation or the social roles of rural
women) may be changed only over a long-term period. The recovery or enhancement of relationships
between agricultural schools and agricultural enterprises, access to credits for business establishment
and the purchase of agricultural land, and better living conditions in rural municipalities could encourage
agriculturally educated youth to remain in rural areas and work in agriculture.
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