Migration in China and Maps

Published on Author Sam Wilson

This is an older article, but given our recent discussions of migration, I thought it would be beneficial to get a view for the scale of this trend. Chunyun, the spring migration of workers heading home for the holidays, is one of the worlds largest annual human migrations. This migration falls right around the Chinese Lunar New Year and lasts for about 40 days. Not so surprisingly Bejing, Shanghai, and Shenzhen, the major cities in China that host significant portions of the migrant workers, have seen the “biggest departures in the country.”

A massive 2.8 billion trips using public transportation networks are expected to have been made this year. And if we include private vehicles studies predict that

“3.7 billion trips in total will be made during the 40 days, an increase of 100 million trips over last year.”

This makes me wonder how this affects the Chinese Economy. On the one hand these migrant workers will not be working during these forty days, possibly causing some factory problems. On the other hand this might cause a boost in transportations cost and income, be it in either gas prices/income or public transportation costs.

Source, article and images: http://www.cnn.com/2015/02/17/travel/china-spring-migration-chunyun/

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2 Responses to Migration in China and Maps

  1. Neat — I didn’t know you could do a gallery in WordPress. A couple years ago there was a very nice Chinese web site that tracked this day by day.

  2. The visual representation of how localized such massive internal migration is very insightful, especially when you can also see how much land there is in China. Even Beijing is somewhat of an outlier in the network, as the other major hubs depicted are mainly southeastern. And you can also notice where the destinations and origins are based on the density of lines, even though the filter criteria was simply popularity of use, which includes return trips. Furthermore, it should also be noted that Tom Miller’s book states that the majority of migration comes from only six provinces which are mostly in the interior.