Constantinescu 4/2004

Sociologie Românească, Vol. II, no. 4/2004, pp. 169-186.

 


 

SR 4 2004 coperta

Importanța legăturilor slabe în migrație

The Importance of Weak Links in Migration

Monica Constantinescu

 

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Abstract (Rezumat în limba engleză): The paper analyzes the problem of the development mechanism of the international migration at a community level. Some empirical observations cumulated during several researches, in the origin and the destination areas, regarding Romanians' migration to Spain constitute the starting points. Relying on the distinction introduced by Mark Granovetter in 1976 between weak and strong ties, we find that, if initially migration develops almost exclusively on the basis of social relations that could be assimilated to strong ties, there is a moment in the process development when the departures based on weak ties, with important consequences on the migrant's situation at destination, increase. The paper tries to clarify, mainly invoking theoretical arguments, to what extent the departures based on weak migrant - non-migrant ties are a normal phase in the process of international migration development at a community level. The study concludes that, because of the cumulative effects, the evolution of migration to a phase when the departures based on weak ties appear is explainable. Two mechanisms mainly contribute to this result: the enhancement of incentives to migrate (because the quantitative and the qualitative information increase; the visibility of the effects of migration in the origin area; changes of the relative deprivation at a community level) and the lowering of the costs and risk associated to migration having as a consequence the reduction of the effective support that a non-migrant needs from a migrant in order to migrate.