Are we becoming more migratory? ONS LS beta project features in The Economist

Fiona Cox, CALLS Hub 

The Economist recently featured work from an ONS LS beta-test project by Tony Champion and Ian Shuttleworth.  This project used the new Census 2011 data in the ONS LS to analyse patterns of house moves in England and Wales over the 40 year period from 1971-2011.

Building on previous work in the area, the authors used 10 year change of address data from one census to the next to explore how patterns of migration have changed across time, and whether these patterns are different for certain types of move (eg moves of over 50km) or for certain groups in the population (eg, those with university degrees, or owner-occupiers).

The results suggest that almost all subgroups of people in England and Wales move home less frequently now than in the past, though this is less marked for moves over longer distances.   Possible explanations proposed include: higher rates of car-ownership which permits commuting to work; and increases in the proportion of people who own their home, and hence find it more time-consuming and costly to move.

You can read the article in The Economist, and also download Tony Champion’s slides about the work, which he presented at the recent UK LS Census Linkage Launch Event.


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