Unpacking interregional migration

    Diana Castorina is currently completing her PhD in economics in the area of interregional migration in Australia where her overall research objective seeks to understand what makes people want to stay, move away from or move into a region. She is under the primary supervision of A/Prof Riccardo Welters, Theme Leader of ‘Sustainable Development’ at the Cairns Institute, JCU.
    Having lived in regions all her life and experienced first hand how push and pull factors influence decision making and impact on the functionality of those regions, Diana hopes her research findings will better guide practitioners and policy makers who seek strategies to the challenges of attracting and retaining varied skilled people in regional Australia. 
    As part of her research Diana attempts to better define what is meant by migration. Whilst migration definitions are offered, there are complexities to its dimensions. Margins are blurred temporally, spatially and socially which means there is no clear consensus on its measure. As such within Diana’s overarching objective to identify the determinants of interregional migration within Australia, she seeks to explore three research questions: Who decides to move? Does distance matter? Does space
    matter?
    Castorina and Welters (2022) have since published their findings on the first of these research questions ‘Interregional Migration: Who Decides To Move’ which can be found here: https://doi.org/10.47260/bae/917. In this paper they demonstrate a way by which large scale secondary data can be conformed so that characteristics of all individuals whom make up that household can be better represented.
    Understanding who/m is/are making decisions is important, and not just for understanding migration motives. Practitioners and policy makers can be better informed by data which represents the ‘decision making unit’ rather than assumed societal stereotypes to tackle unconscious bias in policy design. Their findings support this inclusive design, challenging such male breadwinner assumptions.
    Their work has been communicated via multiple media streams including webinars (JCU Inspiration on Tap Nov 2020), Seminars (Pechakucha Townsville Vol. 26), Radio (ABC North Radio Feb 2021); Conferences (BEMAS Conference July 2021 & 2022) and podcasts (Chamber of Commerce Podcast April 2022).
    The Science Behind Why People Move In this episode, Ross sits down with Associate Professor of Economics Riccardo Welters and Associate Lecturer of Economics and PhD Candidate Diana Castorina to talk about Diana’s research paper on why people move to the regions, how to attract people to move to the regions, but most importantly, once they have moved, how you get them to stay.

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