The Impact of Media on Mobility: The Case of Ethiopian Migrants in the West

Samuel Mochona Gabore


As a recent phenomenon, increasing number of Ethiopians are leaving their country and trying to reach the West. The pull and push factors range from expecting better opportunities in the destination to fleeing political persecution. Combining survey data from Ethiopian Diaspora with information from international and national migration organizations, this study explores which media play key roles in migration of people. Over the period of 15 years, from 2000 to 2014, a steadily increasing number of Ethiopians have been migrated to countries such as United States, Canada, Germany, Israel, Norway and Sweden. These countries are either broadcasting traditional media to Ethiopia or having strong Ethiopian social media networks. In making migration decisions, consumption of Western media and prior existence of networks play crucial roles. There has been constant or increasing number of migration to the countries which transmit media, radio and television, particularly in Ethiopian languages and where there are large numbers of Ethiopian Diasporas. In addition, social media is playing important roles in facilitating migration by creating and maintaining networks (connectivity) and providing information. Matchmaking sites are also contributing significantly by creating connectivity that eventually leads to marriage migration.

DOI: 10.7176/NMMC/77-02

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