What Are Push And Pull Factors?

Pushing and pulling geographical factors relate to the causes of migration between people. The reasons can be social, economic, environmental or political. People migrate from one place due to unsustainable conditions like insecurity or unemployment – these are referred to as driving factors while taking people away. The factors that attract people to live in a particular environment can include security, employment, political stability and climate. They are referred to as attraction factors .

Thrust factors

This refers to the conditions that force people to leave their homes. A person moves because of anxiety. Migration is triggered by the promise of an easier and more pleasant life elsewhere. Examples of thrust factors may include:

  • Unemployment . People often leave places where they are less likely to find work (such as rural areas) and go to urban areas where job opportunities are more abundant. This factor was the main reason why cities and towns are very populated. Individuals leave their homes to look for work in more industrialized areas.
  • Insecurity. People move from places that experience terrorism, violence and high levels of crime. They move in search of a peaceful and safe environment.
  • Land scarcity People are forced to migrate in search of more land to cultivate and live. People who need to undertake extensive agriculture move to less populated areas.
  • Political instability. The effects of politics force people to move out of their homes or even countries, in search of a peaceful environment.
  • Drought and famine . Some communities are nomadic because they leave their land in times of severe drought and famine in search of water and food.

Attraction factors

The factors of attraction refer to the factors that attract people to move in a certain area. Examples of attraction factors include:

  • Availability of better job opportunities. Jobseekers leave their homes in places where they can access better opportunities.
  • Religious freedom. There are places in the world where free worship is not protected. People will flee the religious accusation.
  • Political freedom People are attracted to governments that exercise democracy in opposition to dictatorship.
  • Fertile soil . People interested in agriculture are attracted to fertile lands.
  • Environmental safety Places free from environmental dangers such as floods, earthquakes, tsunamis and hurricanes attract many people.


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