Shifting migration system: Latvian migrants in Germany
This paper analyses different aspects of the shifting migration system of Latvia with special reference to immigration to Germany. Main research questions focus on group-related and spatiotemporal variability and changes. Germany is one of the main destination countries for Latvian migrants. The number of Latvian citizens living in Germany is still small, but growing. Out-migration from Latvia is triggered by endogenous and exogenous changes in times of transition, EU-accession and the recent global economic crisis. Against this background, individual problems like unemployment, financial problems or debts hasten emigration. Latvian migration is highly volatile: Today, Germany is becoming a more and more attractive destination for Latvian migrants. The analysis is based on data from official statistics as well as an own online survey. Unique data set results allowed describing profiles of migrants from Latvia and main emigration motives. Following the concept of liquid migration the findings point out that Latvian migration shows elements of continuity, as well as, reflecting liquidity, those of pluralism and fragmentation.