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Seasonal Migration for Livelihoods in India: Coping, Accumulation and Exclusion

Working papers

Seasonal and circular migration of labour for employment has become one of the most durable components of the livelihood strategies of people living in rural areas. Migration is not just by the very poor during times of crisis for survival and coping but has increasingly become an accumulative option for the poor and non-poor alike.

This paper shows why some groups of people have succeeded in entering accumulative migration pathways while others have been excluded. A social exclusion and livelihoods approach that moves beyond neo-classical economics and structuralist theories is adopted. This helps us to understand that migration patterns are determined by people's access to resources, the (institutional, market, policy) environment, intra-household relations, wider social relations, and not just the productivity and demand for labour in an area.

Priya Deshingkar and Daniel Start