In this paper, we explore the role of social networks in the migration decision focusing on the distinct influence networks have on domestic and international migration. The analysis focuses particular attention on the composition of migrant networks in order to improve our understanding of how network composition influences the migration decision. Using data from rural Mexico, we consider migration in a multiple choice context allowing for the possibility that individuals can migrate within Mexico for agricultural and non-agricultural employment as well as to the United States. Our principle result is that the parts are greater than the whole; using disaggregated measures of social networks highlights the complexity of network effects on migration decisions. When modeling the migration choice with aggregate measures of migrant networks, US migrant networks appear more important then Mexico migrant networks for the choice of migration to the respective countries. Once networks are disaggregated by kinship, however, Mexican migrant networks become very important to the Mexico migrant decision. Further, the impact of migrant networks in the decision to migrate is not homogeneous; the closer the kinship bond, the more important the impact. The effect of migrant networks is non-linear and depends upon the type of relationship and destination choice. Finally, US and Mexico ejido level migration assets serve as substitutes in terms of US migration, and complements for Mexico migration.


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