Conference Paper

News Sentiment in Destination Countries and Migration Choices: Evidence from Libya

No.

ERF30_52

Publisher

ERF

Date

March, 2024

This paper examines the impact of changes in the sentiment of migration related news in destination countries on migrants' movement choices in Libya, the most important gateway to Europe. Using data on news from all destination countries and geo-localized data on migrants in all the IOM-Flow Monitoring Points (FMPs) in Libya, we show that a more negative tone in the news coverage in migrants' preferred destinations increases the length of their stay in Libya, thereby hindering the pace of their migration journey. The effect is significant solely for migrants originating from Western African countries and situated in FMPs located in the western part of Libya, or in locations where they are more likely to have access to the news. The change in news tone, in contrast, exhibits no impact when the economic conditions in the destination country are highly favorable, or when the prevailing tone of migration-related news is already predominantly negative. Finally, we demonstrate that a deterioration in the news tone does not induce migrants to return to their country of origin. Instead, it prompts them to redirect their migration trajectory toward another destination country.
News Sentiment in Destination Countries and Migration Choices: Evidence from Libya

Authors

Michele Di Maio

Professor of Economics, University Sapienza of Rome,...

News Sentiment in Destination Countries and Migration Choices: Evidence from Libya

Research Associates

‚ÄčNelly Elmallakh

Economist, World Bank's Office of the Chief...

News Sentiment in Destination Countries and Migration Choices: Evidence from Libya

Authors

Valerio Leone Sciabolazza

Assistant Professor of Economics, Sapienza University of...