Social Trust and Emigration Propensity from Iran

Rasoul Sadeghi , Tehran University
Maryam Rezaei, PhD Student of Demography, University of Tehran
Gholamreza Ghaffari, Associate Professor of Sociology, University of Tehran

Iran has experienced a negative rate of net migration since the 1990s. Recently, large-scale emigration from Iran to other countries (particularly to Europe and North America) has received considerable attention from academics and policy makers. Thus, this paper aims to examine various types of social trust including; interpersonal trust (i.e., trust in people) and institutional trust (e.g., trust in formal and informal institutions) on tendency to emigration from Iran to other countries. The data is drawn from National Survey of Social Capital (NSSC), including 14,200 people aged 18 and over in all provinces of the country, both of urban and rural areas in 2015. The results showed that almost one-fourth of respondents have high propensity to emigration from Iran. High emigration propensity is correlated with lower levels of interpersonal and institutional trusts. Individuals with a low amount of social trust have high propensity to emigrate to other countries. Multivariate analysis indicated that high propensity of emigration is significantly associated with various types of social trust, namely interpersonal trust, and institutional trust, even after controlling demographic factors such as; age, gender, education, marital status, employment status, religion, and rural-urban residency. In conclusion, one of the key and important factors on increasing tendency to emigration from Iran is declining of interpersonal and institutional social trusts in recent years.

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 Presented in Session P3. Poster Session Migration, Economics, Environment, Methods, History and Policy