Over the last two decades a consensus has been reached that there are forces which lead to the inception of migration and to the perpetuation of movement. Taken together, these can be understood as the ‘drivers’ of migration. ‘Drivers’ are then the factors which get migration going and keep it going once begun. This paper attempts to identify key drivers of migration and explores different ways in which they may be configured. It points to ways to assess their different significance or weight, and to investigate their relationship with development and poverty reduction. The paper gives an indication of the extent of the existing evidence, draws attention to research that needs to be done in this area, and points to the future shape of Research Programme Consortium (RPC) research on the drivers theme.