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Does teleworking allow people to leave Île-de-France ?

Finished research
Begin: January 2022
End: June 2022

The COVID health crisis has led to the unprecedented development of teleworking. People working within Ile-de-France are particularly affected by this practice : during the first lockdown, almost half of them were able to continue their activity by working full time from home. Today, while the health situation remains unstable, the practice of teleworking is still a reality for 42% of the working population of Ile-de-France.

Research participants


Contact : Tom Dubois

This survey was carried out online with ObSoCo at the beginning of the year among a sample of 1,000 "teleworkers from the Paris region" aged between 18 and 64. They are defined here as all workers (excluding freelancers) employed in companies located in Île-de-France and who, at the time of the survey, teleworked at least part of the week. The first part of our survey on how this new organization of work has impacted relocations allowed us to establish the archetypical profile of teleworkers in the Paris region.

Many relocation projects towards other regions are influenced by the possibility of telework

  • In general, teleworkers in the Paris region are more likely to plan to move in the next 5 years (45%) than the average population of the Paris region (36%).
  • Over half of them (52%) aim to leave Île-de-France and settle in another region: that’s almost a quarter of all teleworkers in Île-de-France who plan to leave the region in the next 5 years.
  • One third of these projected departures from Île-de-France are influenced by telework: 18% of those who want to leave say they would not do so if they did not have the option to work from home, and 13% say they would likely move to a different location.

Where do they want to go?

  • If these relocations happen, all areas of Île-de-France will lose teleworkers to other regions: mainly Brittany, Nouvelle-Aquitaine, Occitanie, Provence-Alpes Côte d'Azur.
  • Teleworkers in the Paris region are drawn to areas that are already highly attractive and where the real estate market is increasingly under pressure around cities and tourist hotspots.

What are their motivations?

  • For three-quarters of the teleworkers in Île-de-France who want to leave the region, the main argument is the new living environment (climate, calm, proximity to nature...). This is closely followed by the draw of some outdoor space, and then the desire to have a bigger home.

Has there been a mass departure from Île-de-France since the beginning of the health crisis?

  • A third of those who have left Île-de-France since the beginning of the pandemic claim they would not have done so without teleworking.
  • On the other hand, there was no mass exodus towards other regions over that period. On average, from March 2020 to January 2022, the overall number of people moving homes was stable (equivalent to 8% per year), with 17% of those moving away to a different region (which is also equivalent to the usual numbers).
  • At the regional level, where most relocations have occurred, the trend is clearly to move away from the center of Île-de-France towards its periphery, i.e. Parisians moving to the suburbs or residents of the inner suburbs moving away to the outer suburbs. These relocations represent 18% of all relocations. Only 4% are people moving closer to the center.

What can we make of these findings in terms of public policy and strategies for employers?

Limit rebound effects on CO2 emissions

In most cases, relocations or projected relocations involve an increased distance between the home and the workplace. People may commute less frequently but travel more kilometers overall. As we also know that regions outside Île-de-France rely more heavily on car use, we cannot ignore the potential for increased travel-related CO2 emissions.

Levers: Travel passes paid for by organizations (companies and administrations); encourage longer but less frequent periods in the workplace.

Support these new highly mobile individuals to facilitate their lifestyle

These new teleworkers living outside of Île-de-France may have to travel long distances each week and sleep away from home regularly. In the past, our studies have shown that this lifestyle is often tiring, leading some to change it after a while. But under certain conditions, people can also come to appreciate it and realize that it can allow them to reconcile their professional and personal choices.

Levers: take into account the work time that occurs in transport; cover the expense of overnight stays near the workplace (considering the corresponding real estate savings for organizations - companies and administrations).

Consider telework as a lever for regional planning

Policies to enhance attractiveness could be implemented in currently neglected territories to welcome these new workers and prevent them from settling in other regions that are already considered the most attractive and, in some cases, are saturated.

Levers: Companies could be encouraged to establish more premises in small and medium-sized cities that are accessible from Paris by train.


Download the first part of our survey (archetypical profile of teleworkers, in French)

Download the second part of our survey (Teleworking: are we heading towards a mass exodus from Île-de-France?, in French)


The remote performance of a salaried activity outside of the company’s premises, at home or in a third place during normal working hours and requiring access to telecommunication tools.

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A lifestyle is a composition of daily activities and experiences that give sense and meaning to the life of a person or a group in time and space.

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