nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2007‒11‒24
twenty-two papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
Australian National University

  1. Immigration Policy and Welfare State Design By Victoria Chorny,; Rob Euwals; Kees Folmer
  2. Migration to Sweden from the New EU Member States By Eskil Wadensjö
  3. Do Interest Groups Affect Immigration? By Giovanni Facchini; Anna Maria Mayda; Prachi Mishra
  4. The Employees of Native and Immigrant Self-Employed By Pernilla Andersson; Eskil Wadensjö
  5. Acculturation Identity and Educational Attainment By Lena Nekby; Magnus Rödin; Gülay Özcan
  6. What Explains the Wealth Gap between Immigrants and the New Zealand Born? By John Gibson; Trinh Le; Steven Stillman
  7. Social Deprivation and Exclusion of Immigrants in Germany By John P. Haisken-DeNew; Mathias Sinning
  8. The Over-Education of UK Immigrants and Minority Ethnic Groups: Evidence from the Labour Force Survey. By Joanne Lindley
  9. Surveying Migrant Households: A Comparison of Census-Based, Snowball, and Intercept Point Surveys By David J. McKenzie; Johan Mistiaen
  10. Immigrants, English Ability and the Digital Divide By Hiroshi Ono; Madeline Zavodny
  11. International Student Migration to Germany By Donata Bessey
  12. Ethnic Sorting in the Netherlands By Aslan Zorlu; Jan Latten
  13. Political Economy of Immigration in Germany: Attitudes and Citizenship Aspirations By Martin Kahanec; Mehmet Serkan Tosun
  14. Economic Influences on Child Migration Decisions: Evidence from Bihar and Uttar Pradesh By Eric V. Edmonds; Philip Salinger
  15. East-West migration and gender: Is there a "double disadvantage" vis-à-vis stayers? By A. Zaiceva
  16. Social Determinants of Labor Market Status of Ethnic Minorities in Britain By Martin Kahanec; Mariapia Mendola
  17. The minimum wage and Latino workers By Pia M. Orrenius; Madeline Zavodny
  18. Economic and Ethnic Polarisation among Children in Sweden’s Three Metropolitan Areas By Danuta Biterman; Bjorn Gustafsson; Torun Österberg
  19. Technological Change and Immigration By Francesc Dilme
  20. Ethnic Competition and Specialization By Martin Kahanec
  21. Is New England experiencing a "brain drain"?: facts about demographic change and young professionals By Heather Brome
  22. High fertility in city suburbs: compositional or contextual effects? By Hill Kulu; Paul J. Boyle

  1. By: Victoria Chorny,; Rob Euwals; Kees Folmer
    Abstract: For the design of an immigration policy, in terms of the number and skills of the entrants and their effect on the host country, it is important to realize that the kind of welfare state matters. This study confronts three possible labour migration regimes - a temporary, an open and a selective regime - with two possible welfare state settings - a highly redistributive and a hardly redistributive welfare state. By comparing the likely outcomes between the different regimes, and by taking possible effects on the self-selection of immigrants into account, the study draws the following conclusions. First, both labour migration policy and the welfare state matter for the skill composition of labour migrants. Second, to be attractive for high-skilled labour migrants a highly distributive welfare state needs to undo its discouraging effect on these migrants. Third, a highly redistributive welfare state is attractive for low-skilled labour migrants. Because these migrants may become costly for such a welfare state once they manage to stay permanently, one should be careful with the introduction of temporary migration policies for the low-skilled.
    Keywords: International migration; public policy; redistribution
    JEL: D31 F22 J18 J61
    Date: 2007–10
  2. By: Eskil Wadensjö (SOFI, Stockholm University, SULCIS and IZA)
    Abstract: Sweden did not apply any transitional rules for migrants coming from the ten new European Union member states in May 2004. The migration to Sweden from these countries also increased, especially from Poland and the Baltic states, even if not to the same extent as the immigration to Ireland and the UK (two countries with transitory rules of minor importance). The composition of the migrants changed. While earlier many more women than men arrived, now the gender composition is much more even. In this paper the labour market situation is studied for people living in Sweden at the end of 2005 who were either born in one of new member states or born in Sweden. The immigrants are represented in all sectors of the economy but overrepresented in some sectors. Their wages controlling for education are somewhat lower than those for natives. The labour market situation is rather good for the new immigrants and they are not overrepresented in different income transfer programs. The knowledge of these conditions may explain that Sweden abstained from introducing transitional rules also when Bulgaria and Romania became members of the European Union in January 2007.
    Keywords: international migration, migration policy, common labour market
    JEL: J61 F22 O15
    Date: 2007–11
  3. By: Giovanni Facchini (University of Essex, University of Milan, CEPR, LdA and CESifo); Anna Maria Mayda (Georgetown University, CEPR, LdA and IZA); Prachi Mishra (International Monetary Fund)
    Abstract: While anecdotal evidence suggests that interest groups play a key role in shaping immigration, there is no systematic empirical evidence on this issue. To motivate our analysis, we develop a simple theoretical model where migration policy is the result of the interaction between organized groups with conflicting interests towards labor flows. We evaluate the key predictions of the model using a new, industry-level dataset from the United States that we construct by combining information on the total number of immigrants and H1B visas with data on lobbying expenditures associated with immigration. We find robust evidence that both pro- and anti-immigration interest groups play a statistically significant and economically relevant role in shaping migration across sectors. Barriers to migration are lower in sectors in which business lobbies incur larger lobbying expenditures and higher in sectors where labor unions are more important.
    Keywords: immigration, immigration policy, interest groups, political economy
    JEL: F22 J61
    Date: 2007–11
  4. By: Pernilla Andersson (SOFI, Stockholm University, SULCIS); Eskil Wadensjö (SOFI, Stockholm University, SULCIS and IZA)
    Abstract: Using unique register data for Sweden we can match self-employed persons to their employees. We analyze the national composition of the employees and ask if self-employed immigrants mainly employ workers from their home region and if self-employed natives mainly employ native workers. We find that both natives and immigrants are more likely to employ co-nationals than to employ workers with a different national background. We also analyze which factors influence the propensity to hire co-nationals. For immigrants we find that living in a municipality with a high share of co-nationals decreases the probability of employing natives, while the probability that natives employ immigrants increases with the immigrant share in the municipality. We find that the probability for immigrants to hire native workers increases with time spent in Sweden. This result points to that the proximity to people from the same region and possibly also one’s network plays an important role for the employment decisions for both self-employed natives and immigrants.
    Keywords: self-employment, immigrants, networks
    JEL: J15 J61
    Date: 2007–11
  5. By: Lena Nekby (Stockholm University, SULCIS and IZA); Magnus Rödin (Stockholm University, SULCIS); Gülay Özcan (Stockholm University, SULCIS)
    Abstract: This paper explores the identity formation of a cohort of students with immigrant backgrounds in Sweden and the consequences of identity for subsequent educational attainment. Unique for this study is that identity is defined according to a two-dimensional acculturation framework based on both strength of identity to the (ethnic) minority and to the (Swedish) majority culture. Results indicate that integrated men are associated with significantly higher levels of education than assimilated men. No differences in educational attainment are found between the assimilated and the integrated for women. These results put into question the premise of oppositional identities, i.e., a trade-off between ethnic identity and educational achievement, among immigrants in Sweden.
    Keywords: ethnic identity, acculturation, ethnic minorities, education
    JEL: J15 J16 J21 Z13
    Date: 2007–11
  6. By: John Gibson (University of Waikato); Trinh Le (New Zealand Institute of Economic Research); Steven Stillman (Motu Economic and Public Policy Research)
    Abstract: Immigrants are typically found to have less wealth and hold it in different forms than the native born. These differences may affect both the economic assimilation of immigrants and overall portfolio allocation when immigrants are a large share of the population, as in New Zealand. In this paper, data from the 2001 Household Savings Survey are used to examine wealth differences between immigrants and the New Zealand-born. Differences in the allocation of portfolios between housing and other forms of wealth are described. Unconditional and conditional wealth quantiles are examined using parametric models. Semi-parametric methods are used to decompose differences in net worth at different parts of the wealth distribution into the part due to differences in characteristics and the part due to differences in the returns to characteristics.
    Keywords: immigration; portfolios; semiparametric decomposition; wealth
    JEL: D31 G11 J15
    Date: 2007–09–30
  7. By: John P. Haisken-DeNew (RWI Essen and IZA); Mathias Sinning (RWI Essen and IZA)
    Abstract: This paper aims at providing empirical evidence on social exclusion of immigrants in Germany. We demonstrate that when using a conventional definition of the social inclusion index typically applied in the literature, immigrants appear to experience a significant degree of social deprivation and exclusion, confirming much of the economic literature examining the economic assimilation of immigrants in Germany. We propose a weighting scheme that weights components of social inclusion by their subjective contribution to an overall measure of life satisfaction. Using this weighting scheme to calculate an index of social inclusion, we find that immigrants are in fact as "included" as Germans. This result is driven strongly by the disproportionately positive socio-demographic characteristics that immigrants possess as measured by the contribution to their life satisfaction.
    Keywords: social exclusion, international migration, integration
    JEL: F22 I31 Z13
    Date: 2007–11
  8. By: Joanne Lindley (Department of Economics, The University of Sheffield)
    Keywords: Education; over-education, earnings, immigrants, ethnic minorities
    JEL: J24 J7
  9. By: David J. McKenzie (World Bank and IZA); Johan Mistiaen (World Bank)
    Abstract: Few representative surveys of households of migrants exist, limiting our ability to study the effects of international migration on sending families. We report the results of an experiment designed to compare the performance of three alternative survey methods in collecting data from Japanese-Brazilian families, many of whom send migrants to Japan. The three surveys conducted were 1) Households selected randomly from a door-to-door listing using the Brazilian Census to select census blocks; 2) A snowball survey using Nikkei community groups to select the seeds; and 3) An intercept point survey collected at Nikkei community gatherings, ethnic grocery stores, sports clubs, and other locations where family members of migrants are likely to congregate. We analyze how closely well-designed snowball and intercept point surveys can approach the much more expensive census-based method in terms of giving information on the characteristics of migrants, the level of remittances received, and the incidence and determinants of return migration.
    Keywords: migration, surveys, rare elements, intercept-point
    JEL: C42 O12
    Date: 2007–11
  10. By: Hiroshi Ono (Texas A&M University); Madeline Zavodny (Agnes Scott College and IZA)
    Abstract: This study examines the extent and causes of inequalities in information technology (IT) ownership and use between natives and immigrants in the U.S., focusing on the role of English ability. The results indicate that, during the period 1997-2003, immigrants were significantly less likely to have access to or use a computer and the Internet. Moreover, the gap in IT usage widened during that period. Immigrants (and natives) who live in Spanishspeaking households are less likely than individuals living in English-speaking households to have access to or use IT. Estimates using a measure of predicted English ability show that English ability is positively associated with IT access and use. The results suggest that much of the immigrant-native gap in IT usage is attributable to differences in English ability.
    Keywords: information technology, immigrants, English ability
    JEL: J61 F22 O33
    Date: 2007–10
  11. By: Donata Bessey (Institute for Strategy and Business Economics, University of Zurich)
    Abstract: This paper presents first empirical evidence on international student migration to Germany. I use a novel approach that analyzes student mobility using an augmented gravity equation and find evidence of strong network effects and of the importance of distance - results familiar from the empirical migration literature. However, the importance of disposable income in the home country does not seem to be too big for students, while the fact of being a politically unfree country decreases migration flows significantly. I also provide extensive sensitivity checks and estimates using both the usual log-linearized and a multiplicative specification. The results are quite stable.
    Keywords: Globalization of higher education, international migration, gravity equation
    JEL: F I
    Date: 2007–09
  12. By: Aslan Zorlu (AMIDst, AIAS, University of Amsterdam and IZA); Jan Latten (Statistics Netherlands)
    Abstract: This paper examines the residential mobility behaviour of migrants and natives in the Netherlands using a rich administrative individual data file. The inclination to move and the choice of destination neighbourhood are estimated, correcting for the selection bias of movers. Subsequently, the role of preferences in the mobility behaviour is implicitly derived from regression estimates. The analysis shows that the percentage of natives in the destination neighbourhood is predicted to be about 18 percentage points lower for nonwestern migrants than for natives. About 65 percent of the differential is explained by their observable characteristics; the remaining part can largely be attributed to preferences and discrimination. No indication is found of the spatial assimilation of second-generation nonwestern migrants. On the other hand, the mobility pattern of the second-generation western migrants is similar to that of natives.
    Keywords: migrants, residential segregation
    JEL: J1 J6 R3
    Date: 2007–11
  13. By: Martin Kahanec (IZA); Mehmet Serkan Tosun (University of Nevada-Reno)
    Abstract: This paper examines resident foreigners’ interest in German citizenship. The study focuses on the roles played by attitudes towards foreigners, political interest of foreigners, intergenerational conflict between natives and foreigners and among foreigners themselves, and regional differences in public finances. To address our research questions, we use a unique dataset from a survey of foreign residents in the German States provided by the Central Archive for Empirical Social Science Research of the University of Cologne. We find that some of the significant negative factors that affect citizenship interest are negative attitudes towards foreigners and generational conflict within foreigner families. On the other hand, interest in political participation, German schooling, home ownership, being born in Germany and being a citizen of non-EU country are important positive factors. Negative experience of foreigners in terms of hostile attitudes, lack of voting rights, or uncertainty of the possibility to stay in Germany mainly discourage foreign residents who actively participate in the labor market, have more years of schooling, and are younger.
    Keywords: immigration, attitudes, citizenship, voting
    JEL: F22 J15 J22
    Date: 2007–11
  14. By: Eric V. Edmonds (Dartmouth College, NBER and IZA); Philip Salinger (Dartmouth College)
    Abstract: Why do young children migrate without a parent? We consider the economic components of the answer to this question by examining the correlates of out-migration for children under 15 whose mother's reside in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, India. 1 million children appear to have migrated away from home in our data. On average 3 percent of living children 5-14 in our communities are away from home, but the fraction of out-migrant children ranges between 0 and 29 percent. We find that the data are consistent with a classical view of migration: children on average appear to migrate out of competitive, rural child labor markets for net financial gain. The costs of migration are important. Children are less likely to migrate from more remote locations. Children are less likely to migrate from locations where child wages are higher. Overall, patterns of child migration away from their mothers look similar to what other researchers have observed in adult populations in different social and economic contexts.
    Keywords: child labor, migration, India
    JEL: J82 O15
    Date: 2007–11
  15. By: A. Zaiceva
    Date: 2007–10
  16. By: Martin Kahanec (IZA); Mariapia Mendola (University of Milan Bicocca)
    Abstract: The labor market outcomes of ethnic minorities in advanced societies and their dependence on social relationships and membership in social networks are important empirical issues with significant policy consequences. We use detailed micro-data on multiple-origin ethnic minorities in England and Wales and a discrete choice model to investigate these issues. We find that the core family structure and contacts with parents and children away (in Britain) increases the probability of self-employment. On the other hand, engagement in organizational social networks is more likely to channel the same people into paid employment. Finally, disaggregating different types of social networks along their compositional characteristics, we find that having ethnic friends is positively associated with the likelihood to be self-employed while integration in mixed or non-ethnic social networks facilitates paid employment among minority individuals. These findings hint at a positive role of social integration on employment opportunities of ethnic communities in host societies.
    Keywords: labor market, self-employment, ethnic minorities, social ties
    JEL: J7 J15 J21
    Date: 2007–11
  17. By: Pia M. Orrenius; Madeline Zavodny
    Abstract: Because Latinos comprise a large and growing share of the low-skilled labor force in the U.S., Latinos may be disproportionately affected by minimum wage laws. We compare the effects of minimum wage laws on employment and earnings among Hispanic immigrants and natives compared with non-Hispanic whites and blacks. We focus on adults who have not finished high school and on teenagers, groups likely to earn low wages. Conventional economic theory predicts that higher minimum wages lead to higher hourly earnings among people who are employed but lower employment rates. Data from the Current Population Survey during the period 1994?2005 indicate that there is a significant disemployment effect of higher minimum wages on Latino teenagers, although it is smaller for foreign- than native-born Latinos. Adult Latino immigrants are less affected by minimum wage laws than other low-education natives. We investigate whether skill levels and undocumented status help explain these findings.
    Keywords: Minimum wage ; Immigrants ; Hispanic Americans
    Date: 2007
  18. By: Danuta Biterman (Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare); Bjorn Gustafsson (University of Göteborg and IZA); Torun Österberg (University of Göteborg)
    Abstract: This paper investigates certain issues of economic and ethnic segregation from the perspective of children in the three metropolitan regions of Sweden by using a relative new operationalization of the neighbourhood concept. Neighbourhoods are clustered by population share of visible immigrants in proportion to share of native born residents. The target variable under study is child income based on income of parents. Inequality in child income 1990, 1996 and 2002 is studied by decomposing additively decomposable inequality indexes. Based on this, measures of residential economic polarisation and residential ethnic polarisation are obtained. Of major significance is that residential polarisation increased for all three regions and for both sub-periods 1990-1996 and 1996-2002. For example, while in the Stockholm region 7 percent of inequality in child income in 1990 was due to differences in mean income across neighbourhoods, the proportion had increased to as much as 22 percent in 2002. Ethnic residential polarisation increased as well and we report a relatively large overlap between economic and ethnic polarisation. Based on estimated regression models, we conclude that increased returns to parental education have forcefully contributed to larger economic polarisation among children in Swedish metropolitan regions.
    Keywords: segregation, children, Sweden, immigrants, income, education
    JEL: D31 J13 J15
    Date: 2007–11
  19. By: Francesc Dilme (Universitat de Barcelona)
    Abstract: We develop a simple model where two technologies are available to produce the same good, and we study under what conditions both will be used. We use the model to analyze the consequences of the simultaneous use of two different technologies for the economic variables and economic growth. Finally, we explore how migrations of factors affect the technological change and the performance of the economy.
    Keywords: solow model, migration, technological change
    JEL: O41 O15 O33 O11
    Date: 2007
  20. By: Martin Kahanec (IZA)
    Abstract: Are ethnic specialization and thus a downward sloping labor demand curve fundamental features of labor market competition between ethnic groups? In a general equilibrium model, this paper argues that spillover effects in skill acquisition and social distances between ethnic groups engender equilibrium regimes of skill acquisition that differ in their implications for ethnic specialization. Specifically, fundamental relationships through which relative group sizes determine whether ethnic specialization arises and in what degree are established. Thus, this paper theoretically justifies a downward sloping labor demand curve and explains why some ethnic groups earn more than others, ethnic minorities underperforming or outperforming majorities.
    Keywords: human capital, ethnic group, labor market, ethnic specialization, spillover effects
    JEL: J15 J24 J70 O15
    Date: 2007–11
  21. By: Heather Brome
    Abstract: Recent news articles and studies have generated concern among New England policy makers and others that the region’s supply of young, highly educated professionals is disappearing. The fear is that comparatively high housing and other costs may be driving away many within this highly mobile group. This paper explores trends in the stocks and flows of young professionals, defined as people 25 to 39 with at least a bachelor’s degree. The goal is to help policy makers better understand this important demographic story, giving them the facts about how various factors, including migration, are affecting the region’s supply of young, educated labor.
    Keywords: Labor supply - New England ; Labor mobility - New England ; Professional employees - New England ; New England - Population
    Date: 2007
  22. By: Hill Kulu (Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany); Paul J. Boyle (Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany)
    Abstract: Fertility rates are known to be higher in city suburbs. One interpretation is that the suburban ‘context’ influences the behaviour of individuals who reside there while an alternative is that the ‘composition’ of the suburban population explains the higher fertility levels. Furthermore, suburban in-migrants who intend to have children may have a significant influence on suburban fertility rates. Using Finnish longitudinal register data we show that fertility rates are higher in the suburbs and rural areas and lower in the cities. While fertility variation across these residential contexts decreases significantly after controlling for women’s demographic and socio-economic characteristics, it does not disappear entirely suggesting that the local context may have some influence on fertility. While movers to suburbs do display higher fertility levels than non-migrant residents, their overall impact is not great because they form a small share of the suburban population.
    Keywords: Finland, event history analysis, fertility, migration, residential mobility, rural areeas, suburban areas, urban areas
    JEL: J1 Z0
    Date: 2007–11

This nep-mig issue is ©2007 by Yuji Tamura. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
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