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Spain: migration 1960s to present

Migration A–Z


  1. Jessica Sperling

Published Online: 4 FEB 2013

DOI: 10.1002/9781444351071.wbeghm511

The Encyclopedia of Global Human Migration

The Encyclopedia of Global Human Migration

How to Cite

Sperling, J. 2013. Spain: migration 1960s to present. The Encyclopedia of Global Human Migration. .

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 4 FEB 2013


Compared to long-standing receiving societies like the United States, and even compared to more recent receiving societies in Northern and Western Europe, large-scale immigration to Spain began relatively recently. Yet immigration to Spain has increased dramatically between the 1980s and the late 2000s, marking a significant shift from being historically a country of emigration to being a country of immigration. Relative to its population size, Spain has come to have one of the largest immigration streams in Europe (Arango & Finotelli 2009). This relatively sudden and sharp demographic change has significantly altered the makeup of the Spanish nation, and it has created the need for continued policy developments to deal with these demographic changes.


  • immigration;
  • South America;
  • labor;
  • gender;
  • assimilation and exclusion