The Global Flow of People

Nikola Sander

with Guy Abel, Ramon Bauer, Johannes Schmidt, Andi Pieper, Elvira Stein, Tina Frank

A rising tide of global migration?

Lack of comparable flow data

Flow data for <50 countries, measured in different ways.

Stock data on foreign-born more widely available.

But stocks are an accumulative measure.

How many people migrated in the world in 2005-10?

Quantifying Global International Migration Flows

Guy Abel & Nikola Sander.
Published in Science on 28 March 2014; vol 343: 1520-1522.

We estimate flows (1990-95 to 2005-10) from bilateral stocks (1990, 2000, 2010) for 196 countries.

No rising tide of migration

Intensity of global migration: 0.6 % over 5-year periods.

“The purpose of visualization is insight, not pictures” --Ben Shneiderman, 1999

“Scientists must learn to communicate with the public, be willing to do so and indeed consider it their duty to do so.”

Royal Society, 1985