Malawi 2008 Supplemental migration material

Dear Users and IPUMS staff,

I am using 2008 Malawi supplemental material, listing individuals undertaking international migration in the period 1998-2008.

My problem:
Some of the individuals are reported to be younger than the year they are supposed to have migrated (for instance, a kid might be 1 year old in 2008, but is reported to have migrated in 1998).

My Question
Did anybody else detect the same problem? How could I solve the issue (apart from dropping those observations)? Did I miss something?



I found the questionnaire form. The related questions are:

Did any member of the household leave Malawi during the last 10 years (from 1998 to 2008)?

If yes, provide the following information (age, destination, year of departure, activity at destination).

Could it be that age refers to the age at the moment of departure? inthis way, I could explain the discrpancy between the age and the year migrated.


Based on the information provided on the questionnaire, age is supposed to refer to the actual age since birth of an individual. Based on my investigation of this issue, it looks like the number of cases with discrepancies is relatively small. This suggests these discrepancies are likely due to measurement error. There is typically some measurement error in most self-reported variables identifying age of respondents. Based on this same logic, there could also be measurement error in the reporting of the year of migration. Recalling events in the past are typically difficult to do with accuracy. This can lead to discrepancies of the sort you seem to be finding.

Dear Jeff,

Thank you very much for your reply. I will remove those observations due to such recalling error.