Characteristics associated with migration among older women and men in Rural Malawi

Jacob Kendall, Philip Anglewicz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


The older population in sub-Saharan Africa is growing rapidly, but little is known about the migration patterns of older individuals in this setting. In this article, we identify the determinants of migration for older individuals in a rural African setting. To do so, we use rare longitudinal data with information for older individuals both before and after migration. We first identify premigration factors associated with moving in the future and then identify differences in characteristics between migrants and nonmigrants after migration. In addition to basic sociodemographic information, we examine differences between migrants and nonmigrants in land ownership, number of lifetime marriages, number of living offspring, previous migration experience, household size, social and religious participation, and religious affiliation. Results show that (a) migration in older age is related to marriage, health and HIV status, household size, and religion; (b) older women who are HIV-positive are more likely to move, and older men with better physical health are more likely to move; (c) older female migrants have worse postmigration physical health; and (d) the relationship between health and migration for older men disappears after migration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)283-308
Number of pages26
JournalIllness Crisis and Loss
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Ageing
  • Malawi
  • Migration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Sociology and Political Science


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