4 / 1993
Janez Malačič

Demographic Transition, Emigration and Long-Term Economic Development: Countries with the Highest Emigration in Europe

In the paper demographic transition, emigration and long-term economic development with special reference to the countries with the highest emigration in Europe is analysed. Special attention is devoted to the connections between the process of demographic transition and overseas emigration and to the importance of long-term economic development for migrations. European countries with the highest emigration are divided into two groups of old and new emigration during the period 1800-1940. Notwithstanding the division Europe was characterized by the mass overseas emigration during the period. European experience shows that long-term economic development, modernization and social advancement have transformed a great majority of European countries into the countries of immigration. Emigrations from Europe gained momentum only if a certain level of development had been achieved. In many European countries rural-urban migrations preceded the emigration abroad and skilled workers represented a significant proportion of emigrants.