Accepted Paper:

Regional Migration in Colombia: violence, poverty, mining, "progress" and state policies  


Dario Blanco Arboleda (University of Antioquia)

Paper short abstract:

This paper is the result of the investigation "Migrants going and returning" carried out in the department of Antioquia, Colombia. We found that the output tensions for people from non-urban areas would be within a matrix of interwoven elements.

Paper long abstract:

The research sought to find the motivations of people in non-urban areas for leaving their home areas and migrate to the cities. The main objective was to understand 1) the dynamics of arrival, stay and eventual returning of migrants to their home areas and 2) how individuals and families kept the relationship "hometown region - receiving city" throughout the time that migrants remained outside from their original places.

The results show that the majority of individuals and families leave their home areas to go to cities because of multiple motivations and not just because of a determining cause. Some of the most important are: i) Acts of violence made by armed groups who seek to force out families and take possession their land. ii) Poverty and misery that forces people to migrate looking for subsistence work. iii) Mining which comes replacing the drug as an important and quick source of income. iv) The idea of "progress", "development", which is internalized in young people -who has barely old enough- and takes them to "open way", to "do life" in cities which are associated with "success". And v) state policies seeking certain "benefits" to communities with specific problems or for some "victims", these policies in many cases end up generating tensions to villagers in general, who migrate, seeking the benefits of the policy, to cities where the offices to process and charge the applications are located.

Panel MMM31
The causes and diversity of migration processes (IUAES Commission on Migration and Diaspora)