Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Show Summary Details
More options …

European Countryside

The Journal of Mendel University in Brno

4 Issues per year

CiteScore 2016: 0.69

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2016: 0.190
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2016: 0.896

Open Access
See all formats and pricing
More options …
Volume 4, Issue 1 (Jan 2012)


The rural as a return migration destination

Maura Farrell / Marie Mahon / John McDonagh
Published Online: 2012-02-24 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/v10091-012-0012-9

The rural as a return migration destination

This paper investigates the phenomenon of return migration to rural areas through exploring how different conceptual approaches address issues of population return, and the significance of the rural as a return migration destination. Theories of migration have variously concentrated on economic, social, cultural and political understandings, with migration often thought of in terms of various forms of capital. Theories relating to the rural, in particular those that reflect the influence of globalizing processes, advocate a shift towards understanding it in relational, context-specific terms, implying that individual return migration experiences that are situated within a particular rural context will be complex and distinct. Using empirical evidence from the West of Ireland, this paper reviews some key conceptual approaches to understanding return migration on the one hand, and the impact of a rural context on the other. Drawing from a series of qualitative interviews conducted with return migrants, this paper reveals the complexity of contemporary return migration experiences in rural areas.

Keywords: Return migration; rural; rural development; West of Ireland; Globalisation

  • Al-Ali, N. & Koser, K., eds. (2002). New Approaches to Migration? Transnational Communities and the transformation of Home. London: Routledge.Google Scholar

  • Black, R., King, R. & Tiemoko, R. (2003). Migration, return and small enterprise development in Ghana: a route out of poverty? Sussex Centre for Migration Research, Sussex Migration, Working Paper no. 9. www.sussex.ac.uk/migration/documents/mwp9.pdf

  • Boyle, P. & Halfacree, K. (1998). Migration into rural areas: theories and issues. Chichester: John Wiley & Sons.Google Scholar

  • Bunce, M. (2003). Reproducing rural idylls. In Cloke, P. (ed.), County Visions (pp. 14-30). Harlow: Pearson.Google Scholar

  • Callea, S. (1986). Different forms, reasons and motivations for return migration of persons who voluntarily decide to return to their countries of origin. International Migration, 24(1), 61-76. Doi: 10.1111/j.1468-2435.1986.tb00102.x.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Cassarino, J. P. (2004). Theorising Return Migration: The Conceptual Approach to Return Migrants Revisited. International Journal on Multicultural Societies, 6(2), 253-279.Google Scholar

  • Cerase F. (1974). Expectations and reality: a case study of return migration from the United States to Southern Italy. International Migration Review No. 8: 245-262.Google Scholar

  • Central Statistics Office (2002). Population and migration estimates 2002.Google Scholar

  • Central Statistics Office (2006). Population and migration estimates 2006.Google Scholar

  • Champion, T. (1998). Studying counterurbanisation and the rural population turnaround. In Boyle, P. & Halfacree, K. (eds.), Migration into Rural Areas: Theories and Issues. (pp. 21-40). Chichester: J. Wiley & Sons.Google Scholar

  • Cloke, P. (2006). Conceptualizing rurality. In: Cloke, P., Marsden, T. & Mooney, P. H. (eds.), Handbook of Rural Studies, (pp. 18-28). Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications.Google Scholar

  • Cloke, P., Phillips, M. & Thrift, N. (1998b). Class, colonization and lifestyle strategies in Gower. In Boyle, P., Halfacree, K. (eds.), Migration into Rural Areas: Theories and Issues (pp. 166-185). Chichester: J. Wiley & Sons.Google Scholar

  • Conlon, D. (2009). ‘Germs’ in the heart of the other: emigrant scripts, the Celtic Tiger and lived realities of return, Irish Geography 42(1), 101-117. Doi: 10.1080/00750770902815646.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Corcoran, M. (2002). The process of migration and the reinvention of self: the experiences of returning Irish emigrants, In Éire-Ireland XXXVII (102), 175-191.Google Scholar

  • Courtney, D. (2000). A quantification of Irish migration with a particular emphasis on the 1980s and 1990s. In Bielenberg. A. (ed.), The Irish Diaspora (pp. 287-316). Harlow: Longman.Google Scholar

  • Dustmann, C. & Weiss, Y. (2007). Return Migration: Theory and Empirical Evidence from the UK. British Journal of Industrial Relations, 45(2), 236-256. Doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8543.2007.00613.x.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Dustmann, C., Bentolila, S. & Faini, R. (1996). Return Migration: The European Experience. Economic Policy, 11(22), 213-250.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Findlay, A., Short, D., & Stockdale, A. (2000). The labour market impact of migration to rural areas. Applied Geography, 20(4), 333-348. Doi: 10.1016/S0143-6228(00)00012-6.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Gmelch, G. (1980). Return migration. Annual Review of Anthropology, 9, 135-59. Doi: 10.1146/annurev.an.09.100180.001031.PubMedCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Halfacree, K. (1993). Locality and social representation: space, discourse and alternative definitions of the rural. Journal of Rural Studies 9(1), 23-37. Doi: 10.1016/0743-0167(93)90003-3.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Halfacree, K. (2001). Constructing the object: taxonomic practices, ‘counterurbanisation’ and positioning marginal rural settlement. International Journal of Population Geography, 7(6), 395-411. Doi: 10.1002/ijpg.238.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Halfacree, K. (2008). To revitalise counterurbanisation research? Recognising an international and fuller picture. Population, Space and Place, 14(6), 479-495. Doi: 10.1002/psp.501.CrossrefWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • Halfacree, K. (2012). Heterolocal Identities? Counter-Urbanisation, Second Homes, and Rural Consumption in the Era of Mobilities. Population, Space and Place 18(2), 209-224. Doi: 10.1002/psp.665.CrossrefWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • Hunter, A. (2010). Theory and Practice of Return Migration at Retirement: the Case of Migrant Worker Hostel Residents in France. Population, Space and Place, 17(2), 179-192. Doi: 10.1002/psp.610.CrossrefWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • Jones, R. (2003). Multinational investment and return migration in Ireland in the 1990s - a county-level analysis. Irish Geography, 32(2), 153-169. Doi: 10.1080/00750770309555819.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Kubat, D. (1984). The Politics of Return. International Return Migration in Europe, Proceedings of the First European Conference on International Return Migration, Rome, 11-14 November 1981. New York: Centre for Migration Studies.Google Scholar

  • Mahon, M. (2007). New populations; shifting expectations: The changing experience of Irish rural space and place. Journal of Rural Studies, 23(3), 345-356. Doi: 10.1016/j.jrurstud.2007.01.006.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Marsden, T., Murdoch, J., Lowe, P., Munton, R & Flynn, A. (1993). Constructing the Countryside. London: UCL Press.Google Scholar

  • McDonagh, J. (2001). Renegotiating Rural Development in Ireland. Aldershot: Ashgate.Google Scholar

  • Milbourne, P. (2007). Re-populating rural studies: Migrations, movements and mobilities. Journal of Rural Studies, 23(3), 381-386. Doi: 10.1016/j.jrurstud.2007.04.002.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Murdoch, J. (2006). Networking rurality: emergent complexity in the countryside. In Cloke, P., Marsden, T. & Mooney, P. H. (eds.), Handbook of Rural Studies (pp. 171-184). Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications.Google Scholar

  • Ní Laoire, C. (2007). The ‘green green grass of home? Return migration to rural Ireland. Journal of Rural Studies, 23(3), 332-344. Doi: 10.1016/j.jrurstud.2007.01.005.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Ní Laoire, C. (2008). ‘Settling back’? A biographical and life-course perspective on Ireland's recent return migration. Irish Geography, 41(2), 195-210. Doi: 10.1080/00750770802076968.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Panelli, R. (2006). Rural society. In: Cloke, P., Marsden, T. & Mooney, P. H. (eds.), Handbook of Rural Studies (pp 63-90). Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications.Google Scholar

  • Portes, A., Guarnizo, L. & Landolt P. (1999). Pitfalls and promise of an emergent research field. Ethnic and Racial Studies, 22(2), 217-237. Doi: 10.1080/014198799329468.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Ralph, D. (2009). ‘Home is where the heart is’? Understandings of ‘home’ among Irishborn migrants from the United States. Irish Studies Review, 17(2), 183-200. Doi: 10.1080/09670880902885396.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Richmond, A. H. (1984). Explaining return migration. In Kubat, D. (ed.), The Politics of Return. International Return Migration in Europe (pp. 269-275), Proceedings of the First European Conference on International Return Migration, Rome, 11-14 November 1981. New York: Centre for Migration Studies.Google Scholar

  • Rogers, R. (1984). Return migration in comparative perspective. In Kubat, D. (ed.), The Politics of Return. International Return Migration in Europe (pp. 277-299), Proceedings of the First European Conference on International Return Migration, Rome, 11-14 November 1981. New York: Centre for Migration Studies.Google Scholar

  • Sjaastad, L. A. (1962). The costs and returns of human migration. Journal of Political Economy, 70(1), 80-93.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Stark, O. (1991). The Migration of Labor. Oxford: Basil Blackwell.Google Scholar

  • Steger, M. B. (2003). Globalization: A very short introduction. Oxford University Press.Google Scholar

  • Stockdale, A., Findlay, A. & Short, D. (2000). The repopulation of rural Scotland: opportunity and threat. Journal of Rural Studies, 16(2), 243-257. Doi: 10.1016/S0743-0167(99)00045-5.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Stockdale, A. (2006). Migration: prerequisite for rural economic development? Journal of Rural Studies, 22(3), 354-66. Doi: 10.1016/j.jrurstud.2005.11.001.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Todaro, M. P. (1969). A Model of Labor Migration and Urban Unemployment in Less Developed Countries, American Economic Review, 69, 486-499.Google Scholar

  • Wiborg, A. (2004). Place, nature and migration: students' attachments to their rural home places, Sociologia Ruralis, 44(4), 416-32. Doi: 10.1111/j.1467-9523.2004.00284.x.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Woods, M. (2003). Deconstructing rural protest: the emergence of a new social movement. Journal of Rural Studies 19(3), 309-325. Doi: 10.1016/S0743-0167(03)00008-1.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Woods, M. (2005). Rural Geography. Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications.Google Scholar

  • Woods, M. (2007). Engaging the global countryside: globalization, hybridity and the reconstitution of rural place. Progress in Human Geography, 31(4), 485-507. Doi: 10.1177/0309132507079503.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • Woods, M. (2011). Rural. London: Routledge.Google Scholar

About the article

Published Online: 2012-02-24

Published in Print: 2012-01-01

Citation Information: European Countryside, ISSN (Online) 1803-8417, DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/v10091-012-0012-9.

Export Citation

This content is open access.

Citing Articles

Here you can find all Crossref-listed publications in which this article is cited. If you would like to receive automatic email messages as soon as this article is cited in other publications, simply activate the “Citation Alert” on the top of this page.

Kati Pitkänen, Czesław Adamiak, and Greg Halseth
Sociologia Ruralis, 2014, Volume 54, Number 2, Page 143

Comments (0)

Please log in or register to comment.
Log in