Before we explain what human migration is, please note that migration is not exclusive to humans. Animals migrate as well. However, this post will primarily focus on human migration. To start, what is migration?
Migration (human) is the movement of a person or a group of people from one place in the world, to live or settle in another place. It is usually done across a political boundary. Migration can be permanent or temporary (semipermanent) as well as forced (involuntary) or voluntary.
Temporary or semipermanent migration would be, for example, the seasonal movements of migrant farm laborers. Permanent is rather self-explanatory (hopefully).
According to Ban Ki-Moon, the UN Secretary General, “There are 232million people living outside their country of birth, including myself. All of us are part of a productive global economy that benefits our world as a whole.”
Migrations have occurred throughout human history. People have always had migratory lifestyles.
It began with the movements of the first humans from their origins in East Africa to their current location in the world. Migrants from Asia went to North and South America over a period of time, through land bridge over the Bering Strait. Many times in the past, specific events caused the human migration patterns. The industrial revolution throughout 1843-1939 sent over 50 million people from Europe to the USA, Canada, Argentina, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa.
Presently, migrating is much easier because of the ease of technology and communication, and because of the convenience in transport and information. On the contrary, the policies, laws, and controls in entry points are much more rigorous than ever before. More so, in the Philippines, this function is under the Bureau of Immigration.
Migration occurs at a variety of scales:
- Intercontinental – It is the movement of people between continents.
- Intra-continental -It is the movement of people between countries on a given continent, and
- Interregional – It is the movement of people within countries. It is domestic in nature that is migration from rural to urban and vice versa. This is usually the movement of people from the countryside to cities in search of opportunities.
More on migration scales in our coming posts.
Two Important Migration Terms
- Immigration – It means people coming in from elsewhere. When people move from other places into a place to settle, such migrants are called immigrants.
- Emigration – It means people leaving their home country. When people move out to new places, such migrants are called emigrants.
Furthermore, may the following also help you in your reading:
- Why humans migrate? or What are the causes or reasons for migration?
- What are the types or kinds of migration?
- What are the most common migration destinations?
-  http://www.nationalgeographic.com/xpeditions/lessons/09/g68/migrationguidestudent.pdf
-  http://eschooltoday.com/migration/what-is-migration.html