Migration in the Past:
Patterns, causes, consequences and implications

Online, 28 October 2022


The IUSSP Scientific Panel on Historical Demography organized an online International Seminar on “Migration in the Past: Patterns, Causes, Consequences, and Implications,” in collaboration with the Center for Social Research, Guanghua School of Management, Peking University. The Organizing Committee included Hao Dong (Peking University), Lionel Kesztenbaum (Institut National d'Études Démographiques) and Martin Dribe (Lund University). The aim of the seminar was to gather recent research on historical migration, focusing both on migrant selection and integration of immigrants in host societies, and to foster communication about the recent development of new data sources and the opportunities for new scientific contributions they offer.  


In the presence of global challenges like below-replacement fertility, aging populations, rising inequality, and local resistance to globalization, as well as the current travel restrictions caused by the pandemic, migration probably draws more attention than ever before from the public. Similarly in the past, there have been periods of significant international migration flows, as well as waves of massive internal migration, shaping the history and development of many societies. A comprehensive understanding of the historical roots and patterns of migration not only contributes to the scholarship about the past, but also could shed light on the complicated issues of contemporary migration.



This half-day workshop included two sessions, the first on Patterns and Determinants of Migration and the second on Consequences and Implications of Migration. Eight presentations were given at the workshop, covering historical migration issues across Asia, Europe, Africa, and North America (see the program below for details). Over 70 scholars attended the seminar and contributed to a fruitful academic exchange.


If you have questions about this workshop, please contact Martin Dribe (Martin.Dribe@ekh.lu.se) or Hao Dong (dongh@pku.edu.cn).



Program (PDF):

Session 1. Patterns and Determinants of Migration


  1. Determinants of French Canadian Migration to the United States,1852-1881
    Presenter: Marielle Cote-Gendreau (Princeton University)

  2. Trends and Patterns of Migration in Pre- and Post-Independent India: A Historical Perspective
    Presenter: Bijoy Bhattacharjee (Indian Institute of Technology, with Archana K. Roy)

  3. Kin Networks and Migration in Revolutionary China, 1946-1966
    Presenter: Matthew Noellert (Hitotsubashi University, with Xiangning Li)

  4. Patterns and Covariates of Migration in Early Modern Japan: Evidence from Two Northeastern Villages, 1716-1870
    Presenter: Noriko Tsuya (Keio University, with Satomi Kurosu)


Session 2. Consequences and Implications of Migration


  1. Settlement, Migration and the Politics of Ownership, Identity and Belonging in Isiolo Town Kenya
    Presenter: Kennedy Gitu (British Institute in Eastern Africa)

  2. Were Migrants Healthier than Non-migrants in the Past? A Case of Urban Population in Early Modern Northeastern Japan
    Presenter: Satomi Kurosu (Reitaku University, with Miyuki Takahashi and Hao Dong)

  3. Premium or Penalty? Occupation and Earnings of Ottoman Immigrants in the United States, 1900-1940
    Presenter: Rami Zalfou (Lund University, with Martin Dribe)

  4. Spatial Circulation of Qing Civil Officials, 1762-1911
    Presenter: Cameron Campbell (HKUST, with Shengbin Wei)


Hao DONG, Peking University (Member of the IUSSP Scientific Panel on Historical Demography and Local Organizer of the seminar), moderating the session


Martin Dribe, Lund University (Chair of the IUSSP Scientific Panel on Historical Demography), giving an opening remark at the seminar that also concluded the five-year efforts of the panel.

Marielle Cote-Gendreau (Princeton University), giving a presentation


Kennedy Gitu (British Institute in Eastern Africa), giving a presentation


Cameron Campbell (HKUST), giving a presentation


Noriko Tsuya (Keio University), answering questions