New Laws of Migration by E. Ravenstein

New Laws of Migration by E. Ravenstein

Lisitsyn P.P.

Сand. Sci. (Sociol.), Associate Prof. of Comparative Sociology Chair, St. Petersburg State University, Saint-Petersburg, Russia.

Stepanov A.M.

Сand. Sci. (Sociol.), Associate Prof. of Social Analysis and Mathematical Methods in Sociology Chair, St. Petersburg State University, Saint-Petersburg, Russia.

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Lisitsyn P.P., Stepanov A.M. New Laws of Migration by E. Ravenstein. Sotsiologicheskie issledovaniya [Sociological Studies]. 2022. No 8. P. 15-26


The article offers an analysis of the scholarly heritage of Ernest Ravenstein, who might be called the founding father of migration studies. Against the background of radical changes in the methods of data collection and processing since 1876 (the year of publication of his founding paper “Places of birth of people and the laws of migration with seven maps”), the authors of the article question relevance of his work for modern social science. Based on the work of Ravenstein, the article discusses issues related to: 1) characteristics of migrants as a special socio-demographic and economic group, 2) the reasons that encourage people to migrate, 3) the impact of migration on the host society, 4) gender aspects of migration processes, 5) prospects of studying migration. In the final part of the article, the authors point out significance of Ravenstein’s work for modern migration studies. At the same time, it is not the results obtained by Ravenstein that are particularly relevant at the present stage, but those questions that he formulated in his papers. The authors also suggest a number of new migration laws that have remained relevant to this day.

migration; social integration; female migration; comparative analysis; migration theories


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