Debunking migration myths: the real reasons people move, and why most migration happens in the Global South

Around the world, borders between countries are getting tougher. Governments are making it more difficult to move, especially for certain groups of vulnerable people. This comes with a message, subtle or not: that people are moving to higher-income countries to take advantage of the welfare system, or the jobs of people already living there. But research shows that much of what we think about migration in the Global North is wrong, and political narratives shape the conversation and public attitudes toward migration. We speak to three experts who explain what migration really looks like around the world, what drives people to uproot their lives and move, and how some countries in Africa are welcoming refugees. 

Heaven Crawley is a researcher at UN University Centre for Policy Research based in New York in the US, Valentina Di Iasio is a research fellow at the University of Southampton in the UK, and Christopher Nshimbi is a researcher at the University of Pretoria in South Africa.

This episode was written and produced by Avery Anapol and Mend Mariwany. The executive producer is Mend Mariwany. Eloise Stevens does our sound design, and our theme music is by Neeta Sarl. Full credits for this episode are available here. A transcript will be available soon. Sign up here for a free daily newsletter from The Conversation.

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