For the past two centuries, international relocation on a large scale has been often closely associated with “voluntary labor migration carried out by relatively autonomous kinship networks.” Economic and business opportunities have often helped propel and shape mass migration, and encouraged potential migrants to pursue a more promising though also more uncertain future somewhere else in the world. “Over three quarters of the present-day population of the Western Hemisphere are descended from people who crossed the Atlantic to move there during the last five centuries. This broad, diverse and long-lived human relocation helped to reshape the global economy, and studies of it have furthered the theoretical and practical understanding of modern mass migration generally.”

Atlantic Historic Migrations,” Encyclopedia of Global Human Migration.



Go to this page for:

Contemporary migration processes



Other Links:


The transatlantic core of the migration business


"An immigration Policy That Worked"


Migration processes in other historical times and places.


Migration travel today


When capacity management goes awry (May, 2015)