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Migration and ethnic diversity in the Soviet and post-Soviet space

Jang, Youngook (2018) Migration and ethnic diversity in the Soviet and post-Soviet space. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science.

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This thesis examines the migration patterns shown in the Soviet Union and its successor countries during the late- and post-Soviet periods. I begin by constructing a comprehensive dataset regarding the net migration of major ethnic groups before and after the collapse of the Soviet Union, and then investigate how migration, ethnic diversity, and conflict at the end of the Soviet period affected one another. The Soviet Union was a multi-ethnic state where members of its diverse ethnic groups showed distinctive migration patterns. However, the quantitative research from the ethnic viewpoint had been limited, mainly because there was no systemic data of the migration patterns of different ethnic groups. The first main chapter of my thesis (Chapter 2), therefore, attempts to construct a dataset of the regional net migration of major ethnic groups. It shows that many members of ethnic groups were dispersed outside of their national territories during the late-Soviet period (ethnic mixing), but the “return” of these groups to their national territories became evident after the dissolution (ethnic unmixing). Then, in the next chapter (Chapter 3), I proceed to quantitative analyses of the determinants of migration emphasising the role of ethnic factors. The results from OLS and Heckman selection estimations support the idea that ethnicity had a large influence on shaping the migration patterns in both the late- and post-Soviet periods, though the direction of influence was the opposite. Lastly, in Chapter 4, I examine whether this migration patterns contributed to changing ethnic diversity in the sending and receiving regions and then to ethnic conflict and violence in these regions, concluding that both were the case. The results of this thesis are expected not only to help better understanding the Soviet and post-Soviet migration with the enhanced dataset, but also to become a valuable addition to the discourse on the current and historical waves of globalisation and its backlash, given the relevance of the Soviet case.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information: © 2018 Youngook Jang
Library of Congress subject classification: H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
Sets: Departments > Economic History
Supervisor: Minns, Christopher

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