International Migration Data and the Study of Super-Diversity
The purpose of this paper is to review ten prominent sources of data on inter national migration, specifically in light of their relevance to research on the ‘superdiversification’ of international migration in the post-World War II period, and in particular to the hypothesis that migration patterns involving large flows between few places have shifted to patterns involving smaller flows between more places. The paper discusses the types of underlying source data from which global migration datasets are generally composed, highlighting their particular characteristics and the challenges of availability and compatibility which arise when combining them to create more comprehensive databases. The paper also provides a brief review of each of ten major international migration datasets. The paper concludes by noting that while analyses of these databases can yield a macro-view of the diversification of international migration, micro-data are in the long run needed to probe the intricacies of superdiversity.