This working paper is based on a survey of 1,203 households located in the Sampung sub-district of Ponorogo, a region in Indonesia’s East Java province. We surveyed both migrant (n=903) and non-migrant households (n=300) to gain a perspective on the challenges and benefits migration presents to households in the community. We found that of the migrant households, 96 per cent of all migrants had migrated for work. This highlights the reliance upon migration as a livelihood strategy.
This working paper also notes a strong gender dimension in the patterns and processes surrounding migration. The gendered division of responsibilities within households affects men and women’s propensity to migrate in different ways. We found that households with a high dependency ratio lower women’s likelihood to migrate. Gender also influences migration destinations. Women are more likely to migrate overseas, rather than internally, and are more likely to migrate to a greater range of destinations compared to their male counterparts. This difference is due to a well-established gendered migration regime, which sees women’s international migration aided by a system of debt-finance migration that requires little, if any, upfront payment before migrating.
In terms of outcomes, migrant households are more likely to report a greater improvement of quality of life, which includes the overall economic, health and educational status of their household members, compared to five years earlier. International migrants send back larger remittances and a higher proportion of households with international migrants said that their overall quality of life was ‘easier’ than five years ago. These findings suggest that migration, especially international migration (to which women have easier access), has the potential to positively influence perceptions of quality of life for households involved in this study, although more in-depth analysis is needed to verify this premise. It is important to note that internal migration may also result in positive change for migrants and their families, although it may be at a slower rate and smaller in scale due to differences in income when compared to international migration.
Khoo Choon Yen; Platt, M.; Yeoh, B.S.A.; Arlini, S.M.; Baey, G.; Lam, T.; Sukamdi; Litchfield, J.; Sugiyarto, E. Gendered Migration Patterns, Processes and Outcomes: Results from a Household Survey in Ponorogo, Indonesia. Migrating out of Poverty RPC Working Paper 22. Migrating out of Poverty Consortium, University of Sussex, Brighton, UK (2014) 40 pp.