nep-ltv New Economics Papers
on Unemployment, Inequality and Poverty
Issue of 2011‒01‒23
eight papers chosen by
Maximo Rossi
University of the Republic

  1. High-Skilled Immigration Policy in Europe By Martin Kahanec; Klaus F. Zimmermann
  2. What are the causes of educational inequalities and of their evolution over time in Europe? Evidence from PISA By Veruska Oppedisano; Gilberto Turati
  3. Ethnic and Religious Polarization and Social Conflict By Joan Esteban; Laura Mayoral
  4. Negative and Positive Assimilation, Skill Transferability, and Linguistic Distance By Chiswick, Barry R.; Miller, Paul W.
  5. Is there a metropolitan bias? The inverse relationship between poverty and city size in selected developing countries By Céline Ferré; Francisco H.G. Ferreira; Peter Lanjouw
  6. Occupational segregation by race and ethnicity in the US: Differences across states By Carlos Gradín; Coral del Río; Olga Alonso-Villar
  7. The extent of occupational segregation in the US: Differences by race, ethnicity, and gender By Olga Alonso-Villar; Coral del Río; Carlos Gradín
  8. Race and income distribution: Evidence from the US, Brazil and South Africa By Carlos Gradín

  1. By: Martin Kahanec; Klaus F. Zimmermann
    Abstract: Whether Europe will be able to stand up to its internal and external challenges crucially depends on its ability to manage its internal mobility and inflows of international migrants. Using a unique expert opinion survey, we document that Europe needs skilled migrants, and skill mismatch is to be expected. A review of current immigration policies shows that despite a number of positive recent developments Europe lacks a consistent strategy to address this challenge effectively, paralyzed by the notion of "fortress" Europe, which we argue should be abandoned. Since significant political tensions can be expected between native actors that favor and disfavor further immigration, improving European immigration policies and procedures is a formidable challenge. This task involves the need to improve Europe's image among potential migrants, especially the high-skilled ones.
    Keywords: High-skilled migration, mobility, immigration policy, Europe, European Union
    JEL: F22 J61
    Date: 2011
  2. By: Veruska Oppedisano (University College London); Gilberto Turati (Department of Economics and Public Finance, University of Torino)
    Abstract: This paper provides evidence on the sources of differences in inequalities in educational scores in European Union member states, by decomposing them into their determining factors. Using PISA data from the 2000 and 2006 waves, the paper shows that inequalities emerge in all countries and in both period, but decreased in Germany, whilst they increased in France and Italy. Decomposition shows that educational inequalities do not only reflect background related inequality, but especially schools’ characteristics. The findings allow policy makers to target areas that may make a contribution in reducing educational inequalities.
    Keywords: Education expenditures, educational inequalities, Oaxaca decomposition
    JEL: I2 I38
    Date: 2010–12
  3. By: Joan Esteban; Laura Mayoral
    Abstract: In this paper we examine the link between ethnic and religious polariza- tion and conflict using interpersonal distances for ethnic and religious attitudes obtained from the World Values Survey. We use the Duclos et al (2004) polar- ization index. We measure conflict by means on an index of social unrest, as well as by the standard conflict onset or incidence based on a threshold number of deaths. Our results show that taking distances into account significantly improves the quality of the fit. Our measure of polarization outperforms the measure used by Montalvo and Reynal-Querol (2005) and the fractionalization index. We also obtain that both ethnic and religious polarization are significant in explaining conflict. The results improve when we use an indicator of social unrest as the dependent variable.
    Keywords: conflict, polarization, fractionalization, ethnicity, religion.
    Date: 2011–01–13
  4. By: Chiswick, Barry R. (George Washington University); Miller, Paul W. (Curtin University of Technology)
    Abstract: There are two complementary models of immigrants’ economic and social adjustment – the positive assimilation model of Chiswick (1978, 1979), and the negative assimilation model of Chiswick and Miller (2011). The negative assimilation model is applicable for immigrants from countries that are very similar in terms of the transferability of skills, culture, and labor market institutions to the host country, and has been tested previously primarily using migration among the English-speaking developed countries. This paper generalizes the negative/positive assimilation models through analyzing the post-arrival earnings profiles of immigrants in the US from non-English-speaking countries according to the linguistic distance of their mother tongue from English. Using data on adult male immigrants from the 2000 US Census, it is shown that all groups of immigrants from non-English-speaking countries are characterized by positive assimilation. Earnings in the immediate post-arrival period are lowest for the language groups furthest from English, and the increase in earnings with duration is steeper the further the immigrant's mother tongue is from English. The linguistic distance of the immigrants' mother tongue from the destination language appears, therefore, to play a crucial role in generating the inverse relationship between post-arrival earnings growth and the initial earnings disadvantage documented in most studies of immigrant earnings.
    Keywords: immigrants, assimilation, skill transferability, earnings, linguistic distance
    JEL: J61 J31 F22
    Date: 2011–01
  5. By: Céline Ferré (World Bank); Francisco H.G. Ferreira (World Bank); Peter Lanjouw (World Bank)
    Abstract: This paper provides evidence from eight developing countries of an inverse relationship between poverty and city size. Poverty is both more widespread and deeper in very small and small towns than in large or very large cities. This basic pattern is generally robust to choice of poverty line. The paper shows, further, that for all eight countries, a majority of the urban poor live in medium, small, or very small towns. Moreover, it is shown that the greater incidence and severity of consumption poverty in smaller towns is generally compounded by similarly greater deprivation in terms of access to basic infrastructure services, such as electricity, heating gas, sewerage, and solid waste disposal. The authors illustrate for one country—Morocco—that inequality within large cities is not driven by a severe dichotomy between slum dwellers and others. The notion of a single cleavage between slum residents and well-to-do burghers as the driver of urban inequality in the developing world thus appears to be unsubstantiated—at least in this case. Robustness checks are performed to assess whether the findings in the paper are driven by price variation across city-size categories, by the reliance on an income-based concept of well-being, and by the application of small area estimation techniques for estimating poverty rates at the town and city level.
    Keywords: poverty and city size, urban poverty, slums.
    JEL: I32 O18 R20
    Date: 2011
  6. By: Carlos Gradín (Universidade de Vigo); Coral del Río (Universidade de Vigo); Olga Alonso-Villar (Universidade de Vigo)
    Abstract: Using the 2005–2007 American Community Survey, we analyze the occupational segregation of workers by race and ethnicity across states. Although the unconditional analysis shows great geographical variation in segregation, with the largest levels in the Southwest, the analysis of segregation conditioned on the distribution of characteristics reveals that segregation of workers with similar characteristics is generally greater in the East Central region. To quantify conditional segregation, we adapt a propensity score technique that simultaneously controls for several characteristics, allowing the identification of the factors that explain the geographical variation of unconditional segregation.
    Keywords: occupational segregation, race, ethnicity, states, United States.
    JEL: J15 J71 D63
    Date: 2011
  7. By: Olga Alonso-Villar (Universidade de Vigo); Coral del Río (Universidade de Vigo); Carlos Gradín (Universidade de Vigo)
    Abstract: By using data from the American Community Survey, this paper studies occupational segregation by ethnicity/race and gender in the US by comparing the distribution of any demographic group with the employment structure of the economy. The analysis shows that occupational segregation is particularly intense in the Hispanic and Asian population groups, even though the performance of the former seems to be more disturbing than that of the latter given its higher concentration in low-paid jobs. As opposed to what happens for African and Native Americans, human capital variables explain a substantive part of Hispanic and Asian segregation. The analysis also reveals that the differential between women and men is not reduced after controlling for human capital characteristics. In addition, segregation disparities are much larger among male groups than among female groups. A distinctive characteristic of Hispanic workers is that segregation is higher for men than for women.
    Keywords: occupational segregation, local segregation, race, ethnicity, gender.
    JEL: J15 J16 J71 D63
    Date: 2010
  8. By: Carlos Gradín (Universidade de Vigo)
    Abstract: The aim of this paper is to provide some empirical evidence about black-white differentials in the distribution of income and wellbeing in three different countries: Brazil, US and South Africa. In all cases, people of African descent are in a variety of ways socially disadvantaged compared with the relatively more affluent whites. We investigate the extent of these gaps in comparative perspective, and analyze to what degree they can be explained by differences in the observed characteristics of races, such as where they live, the types of household they have, or their performance in the labor market. We undertake this analysis with the Oaxaca-Blinder approach at the means and with the DiNardo-Fortin-Lemieux approach at the entire distribution. Our results show how the factors underlying the racial divide vary across countries and income quantiles.
    Keywords: racial inequalities, income distribution, United States, Brazil, South Africa.
    JEL: D31 D63 J15 J82 O15
    Date: 2010

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