The Role of Social Networks in Migration: A Case Study of Out-migration from Uttar Pradesh to Mumbai

Ruchi Singh



Social networks have gained wider relevance in economics and other interdisciplinary sciences in recent era. Various literature and studies have been undertaken to assess the role and impact of social networks on migration. At one side it encourages migration and on other side to some extent it also acts as entry barrier and thus restricts migration if it is based on any caste, creed, religion or region. The literature on role of social network in migration is underexplored as there is dearth of proper data source and is also difficult to evaluate. The present paper thus fills this gap. The paper makes an attempt to assess the applicability of network theory for the analysis of migration from Uttar Pradesh to Mumbai. The paper will unravel existing studies and literature across various disciplines on role of social networks in facilitating migration. To support the objectives and findings from literature, the study carry out a primary survey of 50 auto-rickshaw and taxi drivers at Andheri, Khar East, Chembur Deonar and Jogeshwari in Mumbai. Snowball methodology has been used for sites selection and study is based on primary data. Collected data were tabulated and analyzed with simple statistical tools. Finding of the study is that network positively affects migration decision by reducing transfer costs both in physical and monetary terms. Study by employing exhaustive literature review and field survey found that social networks encourage migration. Migration from eastern Uttar Pradesh to Mumbai is, to a large extent facilitated by social network in case of auto and taxi drivers.


Social Network, Transfer Cost, Migration, Mumbai

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