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The Effects of Differences in Individual Characteristics and Regional Living Environments on the Motivation to Immigrate to Hometowns: A Decision Tree Analysis

1
Faculty of Science and Engineering, Chuo University, 1-13-27 Kasuga, Bunkyo, Tokyo 112-8551, Japan
2
Faculty of Human Sciences, Institute of Human and Social Sciences, Kanazawa University, Kakuma-cho, Kanazawa, Ishikawa 920-1192, Japan
3
Graduate School of Agricultural and Life Sciences Department of Global Agricultural Sciences, The University of Tokyo, 1-1-1, Yayoi, Bunkyo, Tokyo 113-8657, Japan
4
Graduate School of Education, The University of Tokyo, 7-3-1 Hongo, Bunkyo, Tokyo 113-0033, Japan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Appl. Sci. 2019, 9(13), 2748; https://doi.org/10.3390/app9132748
Received: 23 May 2019 / Revised: 20 June 2019 / Accepted: 2 July 2019 / Published: 7 July 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Civil Engineering)
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Abstract

Population decline and rural–urban population disparities are serious problems in Japan. This study aims to investigate the relationship between people’s motivations to migrate to their hometowns (“U-turn migration”) and their evaluations of the living environments of both their hometowns and current places of residence. An online questionnaire survey was conducted for people living in multiple places in Japan. By using the data of respondents’ U-turn motivations and their evaluations of living environments, we conducted a decision tree analysis to quantitatively describe the multilayered relationship between the environments and people’s motivations, and we focused on patterns that can ameliorate the population disparities. These are the major findings: first, living environments in both the hometown and at the current place of residence affected the U-turn motivations. Second, respondents were divided into several groups based on similar U-turn motivation structures, and with different demographic characters among the groups. Additionally, the evaluations of some living environments tend to depend on the city size or geographic locations. Although some groups’ U-turn migrations may improve population disparities, the improvement and maintenance of living environments are necessary. The results can help local governments in identifying the living environments that need development, and in estimating the feasibility of U-turn migrations. View Full-Text
Keywords: U-turn motivation; hometown; current residence; decision tree; living environment; population disparity U-turn motivation; hometown; current residence; decision tree; living environment; population disparity
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Sekiguchi, T.; Hayashi, N.; Sugino, H.; Terada, Y. The Effects of Differences in Individual Characteristics and Regional Living Environments on the Motivation to Immigrate to Hometowns: A Decision Tree Analysis. Appl. Sci. 2019, 9, 2748.

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