Journal of Scientific Papers


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ISSN 2071-789X

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  • General Founder and Publisher:

    Centre of Sociological Research


  • Publishing Partners:

    University of Szczecin (Poland)

    Széchenyi István University, (Hungary)

    Mykolas Romeris University (Lithuania)

    Alexander Dubcek University of Trencín (Slovak Republic)

  • Membership:

    American Sociological Association

    European Sociological Association

    World Economics Association (WEA)




Trust in government and intention to emigrate in a post-soviet country: Evidence from Azerbaijan

Vol. 16, No 1, 2023

Khatai Aliyev


Azerbaijan State University of Economics (UNEC),

Baku, Azerbaijan.


ORCID 0000-0001-8161-6269


Trust in government and intention to emigrate in a post-soviet country: Evidence from Azerbaijan


Ilkin Gasimov


Baku Engineering University,

Baku, Azerbaijan, Azerbaijan State University of Economics, Baku, Azerbaijan

ORCID 0000-0003-1388-7571


Abstract. Intention to emigrate has been one of the most challenging issues globally over the last decade for both migrant-sending and receiving countries. Rising emigration intentions trigger migration attempts and brain drain, while migrant-receiving countries are challenged by illegal emigration. Self-perceived trust in government is one of the fundamental determinants of citizens' emigration aspirations. This research applies path analyses to explore direct and indirect effects of trust in government on emigrating intentions in a post-soviet country – Azerbaijan. Using a pool of two social survey data (N=4092,n_Male=2106,n_Female=1986,〖Mean〗_Age=31.82) within a serial mediation analysis framework, we conclude that the trust in government has a significant direct (65-70%) and indirect (30-35%) negative impact on emigration aspirations among the people of Azerbaijan. The relationship is mediated by self-reported life satisfaction. Perceived income adequacy also mediates the relationship indirectly via life satisfaction. A key novelty of the study is that, contrary to popular belief, emigration aspirations in Azerbaijan are revealed to be less economic in motivation and are mainly explained by the lack of trust in government, which also reduces individuals' satisfaction with life. Therefore, improving the quality of public services and the trust in government institutions would reverse intentions to emigrate. The research can be replicated in other developing countries, and the findings can be used to design policies aimed at controlling international emigration issues.


Received: January, 2022

1st Revision: December, 2022

Accepted: February, 2023


DOI: 10.14254/2071-789X.2023/16-1/14

JEL ClassificationI31, O15, P36

Keywords: trust in government, institutional trust, intention to emigrate, life satisfaction, perceived income adequacy, migration policy