Refereed Articles

Do floods scare off residents?

Michael Berlemann, Joel Methorst, Marcel Thum (2023),
Economics Letters 222, 110942.

We use the 2002 flood disaster in the German state of Saxony as a natural experiment to study whether the population avoided disaster-prone areas after the flood. Such voting-by-feet location choices should enhance the resilience of municipalities in the future. Our difference-in-differences analysis with data from 419 municipalities over more than 10 years, however, shows that the communities affected by the flood had higher migration development than non-affected communities. The differential effect is also economically significant; the net migration rate is higher by approximately 2.5 people per 1000 inhabitants per year in affected municipalities.

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Marcel Thum