Alan Barrett: It wasn't just hard economic times that led generations to take emigrant boat
THE return of emigration out of Ireland in recent years has led to a renewed interest in why people emigrate and what effect emigration has on them.
One way of exploring these questions is to study Ireland's older population. As a result of our history, the population of over-50s contains a lot of people who emigrated at earlier stages of their lives and are now back in Ireland.
By comparing this group with other people who stayed here throughout their lives, we can gain some insights into the reasons for emigration and the effects.