Digitalization and Migration: The Role of Social Media and Migrant Networks in Migration Decisions. An Exploratory Study in Nigeria

Publication Date: 
23 November 2020
Emerald Insight
Publication Language: 
Appearing in: 
Digital Policy, Regulation and Governance


This paper aims to explore the connectivity between social media use, access to migrant networks, information asymmetry and migration intentions.


The study was conducted using data from individuals living in Nigeria and analysed with a generalized structural equation model, which is rare for this kind of research.


The authors find a dual mediating role of the social media and the migrant networks in facilitating migration, i.e. reducing the threshold cost required to migrate and introducing a bias in terms of information asymmetry. While social media and access to migrant networks directly increase migration intentions, this changes when incomplete information is provided. People who use social media and their migrant networks for information are more likely to have information about destination countries than information on the transit risk.

Social implications

The study adds valuable insights for designing awareness campaigns aimed at reducing irregular migration.


This study contributes to the understanding of the intersection of migration and digitalization

Social Media Misinformation - Digitalization - Migration Intention - Migrant Network