Following Migrants’ Transfers between Paris, New York, and Dakar: The Impact of Social Remittances on Corruption

Ilka Vari-Lavoisier, Ecole Normale Supérieure and Princeton University

The scholarship on international migrations focuses on flows of people, flows of monies and, more recently, flows of ideas. The concept of “social remittances”, coined by Peggy Levitt (1998, 2001) emphasizes how ideas and practices travel along migratory paths. If this perspective gained an increased traction in the literature (Kapur 2014 ; Tabar 2014), this line of research remains disconnected from the body of evidence on financial remittances. Drawing upon theoretical approach to economic sociology, this paper builds a bridge between the scholarship on social remittances, on the one hand, and on financial remittances, on the other hand. Two transnational data sets (collected in France, in the United States, and in Senegal) are combined to propose a structural model (SEM). The findings emphasize (1) the extent to which financial and non financial transfers interrelate; as well as (2) how such flows reflect and affect social hierarchies.

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Presented in Session 210: Economic and Social Effects of Migration