Do Social Protection Programs Foster Short-term and Long-term Migration Adaptation Strategies? uri icon

abstract

  • We examine how migration is influenced by temperature and precipitation variability, and the extent to which the receipt of a cash transfer affects the use of migration as an adaptation strategy. Climate data is merged with georeferenced panel data (2010-2014) on individual migration collected from the Zambian Child Grant Program (CGP) sites. We use the person-year dataset to identify the direct and heterogeneous causal effects of the CGP on mobility. Having access to cash transfers doubles the rate of male, short-distance moves during cool periods, irrespective of wealth. Receipt of cash transfers (among wealthier households) during extreme heat causes an additional retention of males. Cash transfers positively spur long-distance migration under normal climate conditions in the long term. They also facilitate short-distance responses to climate, but not long-distance responses that might be demanded by future climate change.

publication date

  • 2020
  • 2020