K. V. Fofanova, A. A. Sychev. Factors in Migration Attractiveness of a Provincial City: The Case Study of the City of Saransk

UDK 330.43(4)

DOI: https://doi.org/10.15507/2413-1407.109.027.201904.756-778

Introduction. Population is one of the most important economic, social and cultural resources, and the tendency of decline in population is a serious obstacle to urban development. In Russia, the processes of decline in population have taken place due to its natural loss, which until recently has been offset by migration growth. However, in recent years, external immigration flows have reduced significantly. In these conditions, the task of increasing the attractiveness of a provincial city for migrants is of particular relevance. The objective of this study is identification and comprehensive analysis of the full diversity of factors in migration attractiveness of urban space, exemplified by the city of Saransk.

Materials and Methods. The study employed qualitative and quantitative research methods, the method of semi-structured interview, supplemented by the method of secondary analysis of statistical data, being the main one. 57 semi-structured interviews with migrants, including participants of the State Program for Resettlement of Compatriots and foreign students studying in the city of Saransk, conducted in 2017–2019, provided the empirical basis for this research.

Results. The performed analysis of the interviews has shown that attractiveness of a region is determined not by some single factor, but by a systemic combination of them. The following factors influencing the choice of a region for resettlement have been identified: economic, social, cultural, political and natural ones. Although in the decision-making process the economic factors are the most important ones, the presence of strong social ties, the attitude of the population and officials, the availability of education and housing, and the environmental situation also have a significant impact on the choice of the region.

Discussion and Conclusion. When developing migration policies, all groups of factors that help attract migrants to a provincial city should be taken into account. Analysis of these factors as well as comparison of the expectations of newcomers and the real problems they face, make it possible to substantively increase the migration attractiveness of a city and to take into account the opinion of migrants as full-fledged subjects of social change when planning changes in the urban space. The paper may be useful to researchers in the field of sociology of migration and employees of services and organizations involved in the development of migration policies at the regional level.

Keywords: migration attractiveness, provincial city, labor migrants, compatriots, foreign students, settlers, adaptation

Funding. The study was carried out with the financial support from the Russian Foundation for Basic Research as part of the scientific project No. 17-03-00370-OGN.


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Submitted 21.05.2019; accepted for publication 24.06.2019; published online 30.12.2019.

About the authors:

Katerina V. Fofanova, Professor, Department of Sociology, National Research Mordovia State University (68/1 Bolshevistskaya St., Saransk 430005, Russia), Dr. Sci. (Sociology), ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-2344-8986, kateri02@yandex.ru

Andrey A. Sychev, Professor, Department of Philosophy, National Research Mordovia State University (68/1 Bolshevistskaya St., Saransk 430005, Russia), Dr. Sci. (Philosophy), ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-3757-4457, Researcher ID: http://www.researcherid.com/rid/N-7591-2015, Scopus Author ID: https://www.scopus.com/authid/detail.uri?origin=resultslist&authorId=572..., sychevaa@mail.ru

Contribution of the authors:

Katerina V. Fofanova – formulation of the basic concept of the research; development of methodology; analysis of the literature on the stated problem; data collection.

Andrey A. Sychev – analysis and interpretation of the data; writing the initial version of the text of the article; revision of the text.

For citation:

Fofanova K.V., Sychev A.A. Factors in Migration Attractiveness of a Provincial City: The Case Study of the City of Saransk. Regionology = Russian Journal of Regional Studies. 2019; 27(4):756-778. DOI: https://doi.org/10.15507/2413-1407.109.027.201904.756-778

The authors have read and approved the final version of the manuscript.

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