nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2008‒09‒20
six papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
Australian National University

  1. Does Finland Suffer from Brain Drain? By Edvard Johansson
  2. On the Theory of Ethnic Conflict By Francesco Caselli; Wilbur John Coleman II
  3. Segregation and the Quality of Government in a Cross-Section of Countries By Alberto Alesina; Ekaterina Zhuravskaya
  4. Exclusion and alienation instead of inclusion: Africa's new Nationalism in times of globalization By Kohnert, Dirk
  5. The Labor Market Impact of Immigration in Western Germany in the 1990's By Francesco D'Amuri; Gianmarco I. P. Ottaviano; Giovanni Peri
  6. What happens when the migration barriers for 10 new EU member states already fall in 2009? First estimates By Tausch, Arno

  1. By: Edvard Johansson
    Abstract: ABSTRACT : This paper examines the trends in immigration to and emigration from Finland during the period 1987-2006. The focus is on the “human capital content” of the migration flows, the key question being : Is Finland losing out in the international competition for highly educated individuals? International comparisons presented by the OECD give the impression that Finland perform very weakly in the global competition for talent, as the share of highly-skilled immigrants is very low. However, these comparisons are distorted by the lack of information with regard to the level of education of immigrants into Finland. It would be desirable that the Central Statistical Office could provide better information on this issue. The results of this paper indicate that Finland’s emigrants are indeed better educated than its immigrants, and that brain-drain exists to a certain degree. However, the magnitude of the brain-drain phenomenon is not very large, and there is no statistical evidence of the well-educated to emigrate would have increased over time. Although Finland’s immigrants are more poorly educated than the Finnish population at large, they are apparently better educated than immigrants to, for instance, Sweden or Denmark, owing to the disproportionately large share of immigrants from Estonia and Russia to Finland. Nevertheless, the labour market performance of Finnish immigrants is as bad as for immigrants in most Western European countries, i.e. their unemployment rate is about twice as high as that of the native population. This amounts to a serious failure of assimilation policies.
    Date: 2008–09–10
  2. By: Francesco Caselli; Wilbur John Coleman II
    Abstract: We present a theory of ethnic conflict in which coalitions formed along ethnic lines compete for the economy’s resources. The role of ethnicity is to enforce coalition membership: in ethnically homogeneous societies members of the losing coalition can defect to the winners at low cost, and this rules out conflict as an equilibrium outcome. We derive a number of implications of the model relating social, political, and economic indicators such as the incidence of conflict, the distance among ethnic groups, group sizes, income inequality, and expropriable resources.
    Date: 2008–06
  3. By: Alberto Alesina; Ekaterina Zhuravskaya
    Abstract: This paper has three goals. The first (and perhaps the most important one) is to provide a new compilation of data on ethnic, linguistic and religious composition at the sub-national level for a large number of countries. This data set allows us to measure segregation of different ethnic, religious and linguistic groups within the same country. The second goal is to correlate measures of segregation with measures of quality of the polity and policymaking. The third is to construct an instrument that helps to overcome the endogeneity problem due to the fact that groups move within country borders, partly in response to policies. Our results suggest that more segregated countries in terms of ethnicity and language, i.e., those where groups live more spatially separately, have a substantially lower quality of government. In contrast, there is no relationship between religious segregation and the government quality.
    JEL: H10
    Date: 2008–09
  4. By: Kohnert, Dirk
    Abstract: The New Nationalism in Africa and elsewhere shows remarkable differences both in its roots and its impact, compared with that of national independence movements of the early 1960s. Contrary to the first nationalism, the second is less prone to include than to exclude populations; alienation, xenophobia and its political instrumentalization are its curse. The New Nationalism has been shaped decisively by the consequences of globalization and by the increasing cleavages between the poor and the rich. Nowadays, structures of nationalism and nation-states differ more than in the past. Frequently, the new nationalism is rooted in populist grass-root movements which do not necessarily share the same interest as the ruling class or the state. This makes for its extraordinary political and social ambiguity and brisance.
    Keywords: nationalism;migration;xenophobia;ethnicity;alienation;poverty; Africa
    JEL: N47 Z1 F5 O15 I38 P16
    Date: 2008–09–17
  5. By: Francesco D'Amuri (Bank of Italy, Economics and International Relations and ISER, University of Essex); Gianmarco I. P. Ottaviano (University of Bologna, Department of Economics and CEPR); 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 effcient in dealing with the effects of immigration.
    Keywords: Immigration, Skill Complementarities, Employment, Wages.
    JEL: E24 F22 J61 J31
    Date: 2008–08
  6. By: Tausch, Arno
    Abstract: With the ongoing debate in Austria on skilled workers from Eastern Europe for the Austrian labour market the question of immigration policy again is in the centre of the public debate. As the extension of transitional periods for the new MS in the field of migration from 2009 to 2011 is more and more unlikely because of the internal balance of power in the enlarged Union's Council, it must be assumed that on May 1st 2009 the transitional periods will finally end for the Austrian labour market. The author uses the latest data from the “Dublin Foundation” (EFILWC) on migration potential in Europe in conjunction with known migration destination preferences in the new MS for individual EU countries, including Austria, from earlier studies and comes to the conclusion that with an estimated 100,000 immigrants there is no reason for alarmism.
    Keywords: Labour Market; Migration; Integration
    JEL: F22 F15 J4
    Date: 2008–04

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