Why people migrate

Insights and key messages drawn from a decade of MMC research and 4Mi data collection

Refugees and migrants embark on journeys along mixed migration routes for a myriad of reasons. Understanding why people leave their home countries or move onward, and what influences their decision-making, is essential to better understand mixed migration and inform evidence-based migration policies and protection responses.

The question of why people migrate — the drivers and decision-making processes their journeys entail — has therefore been a primary focus of the Mixed Migration Centre (MMC). This paper, based on a decade of extensive research and expert analysis, including more than 100,000 4Mi surveys of refugees and migrants, synthesizes our key insights and sets out five key messages.