nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2008‒08‒06
seventeen papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
Australian National University

  1. Is it a Jungle Out There?: Meat Packing, Immigrants and Rural Communities By Artz, Georgeanne M; Jackson, Rebecca; Orazem, Peter
  2. When Migrant Remittances Are Not Everlasting, How Can Morocco Make Up? By Fida Karam
  3. Brain drain, R&D-cost differentials and the innovation gap By Fabio Mariani
  4. Prejudice and Immigration By Paolo E Giordani; Michele Ruta
  5. Escaping Epidemics Through Migration? Quarantine Measures under Asymmetric Information about Infection Risk By MESNARD, Alice; SEABRIGHT, Paul
  6. Immigration and Trade in Portugal: A Static and Dynamic Panel Data Analysis By Horácio C. Faustino; Nuno Carlos Leitão
  7. Modeling Migration Dynamics of Immigrants By Govert E. Bijwaard
  8. Managing Migration through Quotas: an Option-theory Perspective By Michele Moretto; Sergio Vergalli
  9. Immigration Accounting: U.S. States 1960-2006 By Giovanni Peri
  10. The Labor Market Impact of Immigration in Western Germany in the 1990’s By Gianmarco I. P. Ottaviano; Francesco D’Amuri; Giovanni Peri
  11. Consumer switching costs and firm pricing: evidence from bank pricing of deposit accounts By Timothy H. Hannan
  12. Zipf’s and Gibrat’s laws for migrations By Clemente, Jesús; González-Val, Rafael; Olloqui, Irene
  13. Shocks, groups, and networks in Bukidnon, Philippines: By Quisumbing, Agnes R.; McNiven, Scott; Godquin, Marie
  14. Opportunity and Choice in Social Networks By Paolo Pin; Silvio Franz; Matteo Marsili
  15. Bilingualism and Communicative Benefits By Shlomo Weber; Jean Gabszewicz; Victor Ginsburgh
  16. Social Polarization: Introducing distances between and within groups By Iñaki Permanyer
  17. Bounds analysis of competing risks : a nonparametric evaluation of the effect of unemployment benefits on migration in Germany. (Revised version of the FDZ Methodenbericht No. 04/2007) By Arntz, Melanie; Lo, Simon M. S.; Wilke, Ralf A.

  1. By: Artz, Georgeanne M; Jackson, Rebecca; Orazem, Peter
    Abstract: Over the past 35 years, meatpacking plants have moved from urban to rural areas. These plants can represent a significant share of a rural community’s employment. As a traditional employer of immigrants, these plants can also alter significantly the demographic composition of a rural community. These changes have led to numerous controversies regarding whether meatpacking plants impose social or economic costs on their host communities. This study uses comments culled from various media to identify where there exist sharp differences of opinion on how local meatpacking presence affects local language problems, social service expenses, special needs schooling and the mix of foreign- and native-born citizens. These opinions are used to formulate testable hypotheses regarding the true impact of local packing plants on these indicators. The study shows that while meatpacking has had some large impacts on the demographic composition of rural communities, the industry has not imposed large costs in the form of increased provision of social services or special needs schooling.
    Keywords: meatpacking,immigration, ESL,welfare,public expense,social cost,rural
    JEL: N3
    Date: 2008–07–23
  2. By: Fida Karam (CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - CNRS : UMR8174 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - Paris I)
    Abstract: Specialists of migration and its development impact gave little attention to the sectoral allocation of remittances invested. This is an interesting topic especially when remittances by destination of developing countries are invested in real estate. Putting aside this fact overestimates the volume of investment in the most productive sectors and creates an illusion of a sustainable growth. Besides, unlike the best part of the literature that focuses on the household impact of remittances, a CGE approach is necessary in order to model the linkages that transmit the influence of migration to other households and sectors. This specific investment of remittances in the real estate sector is taken in consideration in our CGE model by allowing a segmentation of the saving market. This is the main contribution of our paper. We apply this study to Morocco, a country largely dependent on remittances. Furthermore, the literature on Morocco is limited to unpublished reports and surveys. We particularly investigate the impact of immigration restrictive policies and permanent migration on the future evolution of remittances. We then ask what would be the appropriate policies to take the maximum profit from current flows. We find that public policies that diminish the country risk premium in favour of domestic and foreign investors and the reduction of transfer costs are the most favourable in term of economic growth and welfare. The increase in the proportion of remittances invested in productive sectors is unexpectedly harmful.
    Keywords: Sequential Dynamics; Computable general equilibrium model; Migration; Remittances.
    Date: 2008–02–04
  3. By: Fabio Mariani (CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - CNRS : UMR8174 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - Paris I)
    Abstract: This paper aims at explaining why countries with comparable levels of education still experience notable differences in terms of R&D and innovation. High-skilled migration, ultimately linked to differences in R&D costs, might be responsible for the persistence of such a gap. In fact, in a model where human capital accumulation and innovation are strategic complements, we show that allowing labor outflows may strengthen educational incentives in the lagging economy if migration is probabilistic in nature, but at the same time reduces the share of innovative production. Income (growth) might be consequently affected, and a positive migration chance is very unlikely to act as a substitute for educational subsidies.
    Keywords: Innovation; Education; Brain drain.
    Date: 2008
  4. By: Paolo E Giordani; Michele Ruta
    Date: 2008–07–28
  5. By: MESNARD, Alice; SEABRIGHT, Paul
    Date: 2008–05
  6. By: Horácio C. Faustino; Nuno Carlos Leitão
    Abstract: This article tests the relation between immigration and Portuguese bilateral trade, considering the fifteen European partners (EU15). Using a static and dynamic panel data analysis, the results show that the stock of immigrants has a positive effect on Portuguese exports, imports and bilateral intra-industry trade. These results suggest that immigration affects all types of trade in a positive way. The underlying assumption is that immigration contributes to decrease the costs of transactions, which in turn promotes all trade flows. The static and dynamic results do not confirm the hypothesis of a negative effect of immigration on Portuguese exports. In the static model, a 10% increase in immigration induces a 5.98 % increase in exports and a 5.55% increase in imports. The effect on the Portuguese trade balance is positive. However, the dynamic results for the export and import equations are more reliable, showing a smaller positive effect on exports. A 10% increase in bilateral immigration induces a 0.47% and 2.34% increase in exports and imports, respectively. Our findings also suggest that when immigrants to Portugal originate from a Latin partner-country, the effects on trade are stronger than in the case of immigrants from non-Latin countries. The study is based on an extended gravitational model, in order to incorporate the qualitative factors as control variables.
    Keywords: intra-industry trade; immigration; gravity model; panel data; Portugal.
    JEL: C33 F11 F12 F22
    Date: 2008–07
  7. By: Govert E. Bijwaard (Erasmus University Rotterdam)
    Abstract: In this paper we analyze the demographic factors that influence the migration dynamics of recent immigrants to The Netherlands. We show how we can allow for both permanent and temporary migrants. Based on data from Statistics Netherlands we analyze both the departure and the return from abroad for recent non-Dutch immigrants to The Netherlands. Results disclose differences among migrants by migration motive and by country of origin and lend support to our analytical framework. Combining both models, for departure and returning, provides the probability that a specific migrant ends-up in The Netherlands. It also yields a framework for predicting the migration dynamics over the life-cycle. From the obtained insight in the dynamic composition of migrants in the country important policy implications can be derived, including admission procedures for different countries and/or migration motives.
    Keywords: return migration; migration dynamics; mover-stayer model
    JEL: F22 J10 C41
    Date: 2008–07–18
  8. By: Michele Moretto (University of Padua); Sergio Vergalli (University of Brescia)
    Abstract: Recent European Legislation on immigration has revealed a particular paradox on migration policies. On the one hand, the trend of recent legislation points to the increasing closure of frontiers (OECD 1999, 2001,2004), also by using immigration quotas. On the other hand, there is an increase of regularization, i.e., European policies are becoming less tight. Our aim here is to study these counterbalanced and opposite policies in European immigration legislation in a unified framework . To do this, we have used a real option approach to migration choice that assumes that the decision to migrate can be described as an irreversible investment decision where quotas represent an upper bound limit. Our results show that the paradox of counterbalancing immigration policies is not odd but it could be in line with an optimal policy to control migration inflow. In particular, we show that if the government controls the information related to the immigration quota system it could delay the mass entry of immigrants maintaining, in the long run, the required immigration stock and controlling the flows in the short-run.
    Keywords: Immigration, Real Option, Quota System
    JEL: F22 J61 O15 R23
    Date: 2008–06
  9. By: Giovanni Peri (UC Davis and NBER)
    Abstract: Different U.S. states have been affected by immigration to very different extents in recent years. Immigration increases available workers in a state economy and, because of its composition across education groups, it also increases the relative supply of less educated workers. However, immigration is more than a simple labor supply shock. It brings differentiated skills and more competition to the labor market and it may induce efficient specialization and affect the choice of techniques. Immigrants also affect investments, capital accumulation, and the productivity of more and less educated workers. Using a production function-based procedure and data on gross state product, physical capital and hours worked we analyze the impact of immigration on production factors (capital, more and less educated labor), and productivity over the period 1960-2006 for 50 U.S. states plus D.C. We apply growth accounting techniques to the panel of states in order to identify the changes in factors and productivity associated with immigration. To identify a causal impact we use the part of immigration that is determined by supply shifts in countries of origin and the geographical location of U.S. states or historical immigrants’ settlements. We find that immigration significantly increased the relative supply of less educated workers, that it did not affect much the level of capital per worker and that it significantly increased the productivity of highly educated workers and, even more, less educated workers. These channels together explain the small effect of immigrants on wages of less educated workers and the significant positive effects on wages of more educated workers.
    Keywords: Immigration, Investment, Supply of skills, Productivity of workers, US States.
    JEL: F22 J61 R11
    Date: 2008–07
  10. By: Gianmarco I. P. Ottaviano (University of Bologna); Francesco D’Amuri (Bank of Italy, ISER, University of Essex and FEEM); Giovanni Peri (University of California, Davis and NBER)
    Abstract: We adopt a general equilibrium approach in order to measure the effects of recent immigration on the Western German labor market, looking at both wage and employment effects. Using the Regional File of the IAB Employment Subsample for the period 1987-2001, we find that the substantial immigration of the 1990’s had no adverse effects on native wages and employment levels. It had instead adverse employment and wage effects on previous waves of immigrants. This stems from the fact that, after controlling for education and experience levels, native and migrant workers appear to be imperfect substitutes whereas new and old immigrants exhibit perfect substitutability. Our analysis suggests that if the German labor market were as ‘flexible’ as the UK labor market, it would be more efficient in dealing with the effects of immigration.
    Keywords: Immigration, Skill Complementarities, Employment, Wages
    JEL: E24 F22 J61 J31
    Date: 2008–02
  11. By: Timothy H. Hannan
    Abstract: This paper employs extensive information on bank deposit rates and county migration patterns to test for pricing relationships implied by the existence of switching costs. While these relationships are derived formally, the intuition for them can be readily stated. Because some areas experience more in-migration than others, banks, in addressing the trade-off between attracting new customers and exploiting old ones, offer higher deposit rates in areas (and at times) experiencing more in-migration. Further, because out-migration implies that on average a locked-in customer will not be with the bank as many periods, greater out-migration should change the bank’s assessment of this trade-off such that the bank will offer lower deposit rates in areas (and during periods) exhibiting greater out-migration, all else equal. Also, because this effect of out-migration logically depends on the existence and extent of in-migration, an interaction effect is implied. Evidence strongly supporting these implied relationships is reported. Other tests of the implications of switching costs in the banking industry are also conducted.
    Date: 2008
  12. By: Clemente, Jesús; González-Val, Rafael; Olloqui, Irene
    Abstract: This paper analyses the evolution of the size distribution of the stock of emigrants in the period 1960-2000. Has the distribution of the stock of emigrants changed or has there been some convergence? This is the question discussed in this work. In particular, we are interested in testing the fulfillment of two empirical regularities studied in urban economics: Zipf’s law, which postulates that the product between the rank and size of a population is constant; and Gibrat’s law, witch states that growth rate of a variable is independent of its initial size. We use parametric and non-parametric methods and apply them to absolute (stock of emigrants) and relative (migration density, defined as the quotient between the stock of emigrants of a country and its total population)measurements.
    Keywords: Migration distribution; Zipf´s law; Gibrat´s law
    JEL: J61 R12 R11
    Date: 2008–07–12
  13. By: Quisumbing, Agnes R.; McNiven, Scott; Godquin, Marie
    Abstract: "This study examines the role of groups and networks in helping poor Filipinos manage their exposure to risks and cope with shocks. It brings together two strands of literature that examine how social capital affects economic variables and investigate the processes by which social capital formation, participation in networks and groups, and trusting behavior comes about. Using a longitudinal study from a province in Northern Mindanao, Philippines, the authors find that households belong to a number of formal and informal groups and networks, but participation differs according to household characteristics. Households belonging to the lower asset quartiles belong to fewer groups, and households with more human and physical capital have larger social networks. Furthermore, wealthier households are more likely to take part in productive groups while membership in civic and religious groups is not limited by economic status. Migrant networks play an important risk-smoothing role via remittances sent by migrant daughters." authors' abstract
    Keywords: Social networks, Groups, Social capital, Poverty, Participation, Gender,
    Date: 2008
  14. By: Paolo Pin (Università Ca' Foscari di Venezia); Silvio Franz (Universite Paris-Sud 11); Matteo Marsili (The Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics)
    Abstract: Our societies are heterogeneous in many dimensions such as census, education, religion, ethnic and cultural composition. The links between individuals - e.g. by friendship, marriage or collaboration - are not evenly distributed, but rather tend to be concentrated within the same group. This phenomenon, called imbreeding homophily, has been related to either (social) preference for links with own--type individuals ( choice-based homophily) or to the prevalence of individuals of her same type in the choice set of an individual ( opportunity-based homophily). We propose an indicator to distinguish between these effects for minority groups. This is based on the observation that, in environments with unbiased opportunities, as the relative size of the minority gets small, individuals of the minority rarely meet and have the chance to establish links together. Therefore the effect of choice--based homophily gets weaker and weaker as the size of the minority shrinks. We test this idea across the dimensions of race and education on data on US marriages, and across race on friendships in US schools, and find that: for what concerns education i) opportunity--based homophily is much stronger than choice--based homophily and ii) they are both remarkably stationary in time; concerning race iii) school friendships do not exhibit opportunity-based homophily, while marriages do, iv) choice-based homophily is much stronger for marriages than for friendships and v) these effects vary widely across race.
    Keywords: Social Networks, Choice-Based and Opportunity-Based Homophily
    JEL: D85 J11 J12
    Date: 2008–03
  15. By: Shlomo Weber (University Dallas); Jean Gabszewicz (CORE, Universitè Catholique de Louvain); Victor Ginsburgh (ECARES, Universite Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium and CORE, Universite Catholique de Louvain)
    Abstract: We examine patterns of acquiring non-native languages in a model with two languages and two populations with heterogeneous learning skills, where every individual faces a binary choice of learning the foreign language or refraining from doing so. We show that both interior and corner linguistic equilibria can emerge in our framework, and that the fraction of learners of the foreign language is higher in the country with a higher gross cost adjusted communicative benefit. It turns out that this observation is consistent with the data on language proficiency in bilingual countries such as Belgium and Canada. We also point out that linguistic equilibria can exhibit insufficient learning which opens the door for government policies that are beneficial for both populations.
    Keywords: Communicative Benefits, Linguistic Equilibrium, Learning Costs
    JEL: C72 D83 O52 Z13
    Date: 2008–02
  16. By: Iñaki Permanyer
    Abstract: The measurement of social polarization has received little attention from the literature. The only social polarization index that has been used to measure religious or ethnic polarization (the RQ index) has several shortcomings that are critically discussed in the paper. In particular, that index is not taking into account the existing distance between and within different groups. A couple of axiomatically characterized social polarization indices that overcome these limitations are presented. In the empirical section we show that the rankings of countries according to the levels of polarization change to a great extent when we replace the RQ index by the indices presented in this paper.
    Date: 2008–07–14
  17. By: Arntz, Melanie; Lo, Simon M. S.; Wilke, Ralf A.
    Abstract: This paper suggests an approach for analyzing a dependent competing risks model in presence of partly identi¯ed interval data. We apply our nonparametric bounds framework to empirically evaluate the e®ect of unemployment bene¯ts on the cumulative incidence of local job ¯nding and inter-regional migration of unemployed workers in Germany. Our ¯ndings indicate that reducing the entitlement length for unemployment bene¯ts has heterogenous e®ects depending on the household composition and the wage replacement ratio in absence of unemployment bene¯ts.
    Keywords: Arbeitslosenunterstützung, Leistungsanspruch - Dauer, Binnenwanderung, regionale Mobilität, Wanderungsmotivation, Mobilitätsbereitschaft, Arbeitslose, Hochqualifizierte, IAB-Beschäftigtenstichprobe
    JEL: C41 C14 J61
    Date: 2008–07–29

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