The impact of immigration in the agricultural sector: the case of the Alentejo

The migration of workers, both geographically and in terms of occupational activities related to agriculture, is one of the largest transformations in this sector in the 20th century.

The Portuguese countryside has been characterized by a high rate of depopulation, as well as by the aging of its population. At the same time, agriculture, the main economic activity in rural areas, observed a substantial decline in terms of preponderance in the labour market and in the national economy. The combination of the lack of manpower and the high levels of competition has encouraged a process of restructuring of the agricultural sector, betting heavily on internalization.

The integration of foreign workers and the expansion of the demand for manpower in the Portuguese agricultural sector constitute a paradox, given the rural decline observed in the 20th century. This paradox serves as the starting point for this research project, which has four main dimensions:

1. Identify the characteristics, intensity and determinants of the demand for foreign labour in the agricultural sector in the Alentejo region;

2. Analyze the sociological and demographic profile and the expectations of the foreign workers in the labour market of the agricultural sector in the Alentejo region

Start Date
End Date
Project Funding
AUDAX (titular do financiamento) através do Alto Comissariado para as Migrações (ACM)
External Partners
CIES-IUL - Centre for Research and Studies in Sociology
Data from Ciência-IUL