nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2008‒10‒28
twelve papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
Australian National University

  1. The Economic Impact of Immigration in Greece: Taking Stock of the Existing Evidence By Cholezas, Ioannis; Tsakloglou, Panos
  2. Migration Impact on Moroccan Unemployment : a Static Computable General Equilibrium Analysis By Bernard Decaluwé; Fida Karam
  3. Intergenerational Education Mobility among the Children of Canadian Immigrants By Aydemir, Abdurrahman; Chen, Wen-Hao; Corak, Miles
  4. Electoral Participation as a Measure of Social Inclusion for Natives, Immigrants and Descendants in Sweden By Bevelander, Pieter; Pendakur, Ravi
  5. Do Interest Groups Affect U.S. Immigration Policy? By Prachi Mishra; Anna Maria Mayda; Giovanni Facchini
  6. Immigration and National Wages: Clarifying the Theory and the Empirics By Gianmarco I P Ottaviano; Giovanni Peri
  7. The Bitter Taste of Strawberry Jam: Distortions on Romanian Labour Market beyond 2007 By Silasi, Grigore; Simina, Ovidiu Laurian
  8. Determinants of Integration and its Impact on the Economic Success of Immigrants: A Case Study of the Turkish Community in Berlin By Danzer, Alexander M.; Ulku, Hulya
  9. Migration from Turkey and the Uncertainty of the Accession of Turkey to the EU By Demet Beton; Glenn Jenkins
  10. New Labour? The Impact of Migration from Central and Eastern European Countries on the UK Labour Market By Lemos, Sara; Portes, Jonathan
  11. How Do Heterogeneous Social Interactions Affect the Peer Effect in Rural-Urban Migration?: Empirical Evidence from China By Zhao Chen; Shiqing Jiang; Ming Lu; Hiroshi Sato
  12. Garbage In, Gospel Out? Controlling for the Underreporting of Remittances By David A. Grigorian; Tigran A. Melkonyan; J. Scott Shonkwiler

  1. By: Cholezas, Ioannis (University of Peloponnese); Tsakloglou, Panos (Athens University of Economics and Business)
    Abstract: Greece was traditionally an emigration country. However, since the early 1990s it became an immigrant destination and nowadays up to a tenth of the population are immigrants, mainly from neighbouring Balkan countries and, especially, Albania. This large scale immigration within a short time period had important social, as well as, economic consequences. The paper reviews the existing evidence and concludes that on average the economic effects of immigration were beneficial, although their distributional consequences were adverse. Greek immigration policy was haphazard and more efforts are needed in order to integrate the immigrants in the economic and social fabric of the country.
    Keywords: immigration, Greece
    JEL: F22
    Date: 2008–10
  2. By: Bernard Decaluwé (Université Laval - Département d'Economie); Fida Karam (CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - CNRS : UMR8174 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - Paris I, EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris)
    Abstract: Recently, much research interest is directed towards the impact of migration on the sending country. However, we think that this literature does not successfully analyse the effects of migration on unemployment and wage rates especially in urban areas. It studies the effect of one king of migration flow, mainly international migration, on labour market in the country of origin and shows that international migration is able to reduce the unemployment rate and/or raise the wage rates. However, it is common to find labour markets affected simultaneously by inflows and outflows of workers. Using a detailed CGE model applied to the Moroccan economy, we show that if we take simultaneously into account Moroccan emigration to the European Union, immigration from Sub-Saharan Africa into Moroccan urban areas and rural-urban migration, the impact on Moroccan urban labour market disaggregated by professional categories is ambiguous.
    Keywords: Imperfect labor market, migration, computable general equilibrium model.
    Date: 2008–04
  3. By: Aydemir, Abdurrahman (Statistics Canada); Chen, Wen-Hao (Statistics Canada); Corak, Miles (University of Ottawa)
    Abstract: We analyze the intergenerational education mobility of Canadian men and women born to immigrants. A detailed portrait of Canadians is offered, as are estimates of the degree of generational mobility among the children of immigrants. Persistence in the years of schooling across the generations is rather weak between immigrants and their Canadian born children, and a third as strong as for the general population. Parental earnings is not correlated with years of schooling for second generation children, and if anything negatively correlated. Finally we find that the intergenerational transmission of education has not changed across the birth cohorts of the post-war period.
    Keywords: immigrants, education, intergenerational mobility
    JEL: F22 I20 J62
    Date: 2008–10
  4. By: Bevelander, Pieter (Malmö University); Pendakur, Ravi (University of Ottawa)
    Abstract: Three decades ago, Sweden extended municipal and county voting privileges to non-citizen residents arguing that it would increase political influence, interest and self-esteem among foreign citizens. Three decades later, electoral participation on the part of immigrants is perceived as being substantially lower than for native born citizens and questions have arisen regarding the degree to which this may be symptomatic of a larger integration issue. The aim of this paper is to explore the determinants of voting within the context of social inclusion by comparing immigrants, their descendants and native citizens in Sweden while controlling for a range of socio-economic, demographic characteristics and contextual factors. We use two unique sets of data to conduct our research. The 2006 Electoral Participation Survey contains information on individual electoral participation in national, county and municipal elections. We match this information to registry data from Statistics Sweden which contains socio-demographic information for every Swedish resident. From these two sources, we are able to create a database which matches voting behaviour to individual characteristics for more than 70,000 residents of whom almost 13,000 are not citizens. We find that after controlling for demographic, socio-economic and contextual characteristics, acquisition of citizenship makes a real difference to the odds of voting and is therefore, a likely and powerful indicator of social inclusion. Immigrants who obtain citizenship are far more likely to vote than those who do not. Arguably, some of this may be attributed to the number of years of residency in the country. However, even non-citizens born in Sweden have substantially lower odds of voting. Country of birth also makes a difference. Immigrants from the Americas and those born in Sweden with immigrant parents are more likely to vote than immigrants from other countries. Somewhat surprisingly, age at immigration does not make a substantial difference to the odds of voting.
    Keywords: political participation, immigrants, descendants, electoral participation, human capital, citizenship, social inclusion
    JEL: D72 J15 J61
    Date: 2008–10
  5. By: Prachi Mishra; Anna Maria Mayda; Giovanni Facchini
    Abstract: While anecdotal evidence suggests that interest groups play a key role in shaping immigration policy, there is no systematic empirical analysis of this issue. In this paper, we construct an industry-level dataset for the United States, by combining information on the number of temporary work visas with data on lobbying activity 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 interest groups incur larger lobby expenditures and higher in sectors where labor unions are more important.
    Keywords: Working Paper , United States ,
    Date: 2008–10–11
  6. By: Gianmarco I P Ottaviano (Università di Bologna); Giovanni Peri (University of California)
    Abstract: This paper estimates the effects of immigration on wages of native workers at the national U.S. level. Following Borjas (2003) we focus on national labor markets for workers of different skills and we enrich his methodology and refine previous estimates. We emphasize that a production function framework is needed to combine workers of different skills in order to evaluate the competition as well as cross-skill complementary effects of immigrants on wages. We also emphasize the importance (and estimate the value) of the elasticity of substitution between workers with at most a high school degree and those without one. Since the two groups turn out to be close substitutes, this strongly dilutes the effects of competition between immigrants and workers with no degree. We then estimate the substitutability between natives and immigrants and we find a small but significant degree of imperfect substitution which further decreases the competitive effect of immigrants. Finally, we account for the short run and long run adjustment of capital in response to immigration. Using our estimates and Census data we find that immigration (1990-2006) had small negative effects in the short run on native workers with no high school degree (-0.7%) and on average wages (-0.4%) while it had small positive effects on native workers with no high school degree (+0.3%) and on average native wages (+0.6%) in the long run. These results are perfectly in line with the estimated aggregate elasticities in the labor literature since Katz and Murphy (1992). We also find a wage effect of new immigrants on previous immigrants in the order of negative 6%.
    Keywords: Less Educated Workers, Physical Capital Adjustment, Skill Complementarities and Wages
    JEL: F22 J31 J61
    Date: 2008–09
  7. By: Silasi, Grigore; Simina, Ovidiu Laurian
    Abstract: The paper is a contribution at the scientific debate of migration and mobility issues in the context of an enlarged European Union (EU-27). We consider that Romania, a country with a labour market that faces distortions, will benefit from migration on short term, but will need to import labour force in order to maintain the development trend. Remittances, as result of Romanians emigration after 2002, helped the economic development of the country in the last years (remittances’ inflow doubled the FDI). As a response to the media debate regarding Romania’s emigration, we consider that the fear of mass migration from Romania following the year 2007 is not justified. While the European (and mostly British) media cries on the threat of Bulgarians and Romanians’ emigration, as following to the 2007 accession, the scientific reports say that the A8 countries’ migration benefits to economy of the EU15 countries. In the same time, the Romanian media and the Romanian entrepreneurs announce the ‘Chinese invasion’ and the lack of labour in construction, industry and even agriculture. We see labour as goods: the economic theory say that goods are moving with the prices, the highest price attracts (more) goods. Romania is not only a gateway for the East-West international migration (like Portugal, Spain, Italy and Greece for the South-North direction), but a labour market in need of workers. While a big part of the labour force is already migrated, mostly to the SE Europe (some 2.5m workers are cited to be abroad, with both legal and illegal/irregular status), the Romanian companies could not find local workers to use them in order to benefit from the money inflow targeting Romania in the light of its new membership to the European Union (foreign investments and European post accession funds). Instead of increasing the salaries, the local employers rather prefer to ‘import’ workers from poorer countries (Chinese, Moldavians, Ukrainians, who still accept a lower wage as compared to the medium wage in Romania, but bigger enough as compared to those from their country of origin). The paper concludes with the case of the Banat region, considered the ‘Western Europe’ from Romania, as a small scale model for the labour market relations within the whole EU.
    Keywords: labour migration; labour market distortions; South-Eastern Europe Syndrome; network effect; decision making; motivation; need for esteem; Banat region
    JEL: F22 J61 R23
    Date: 2007–10–26
  8. By: Danzer, Alexander M. (Royal Holloway, University of London); Ulku, Hulya (University of Manchester)
    Abstract: Using a new data on 590 Turkish households in Berlin, we investigate the determinants and impact of integration on economic performance. We find that usual suspects such as time spent in Germany and education have positive impact, while networks have no impact on integration. There is strong evidence that political integration and the degree of full integration promote income. Using endogenous switching regression models, we show that local familial networks increase the income of unintegrated migrant groups only, while transnational networks decrease it. We also find that education is more welfare improving for integrated than non-integrated immigrants.
    Keywords: integration, economic success, ethnic networks, Turkish migrants
    JEL: O15 J15 C25 D10
    Date: 2008–10
  9. By: Demet Beton (Eastern Mediterranean University); Glenn Jenkins (Queen's University and Eastern Mediterranean University)
    Abstract: There is a fear that, if Turkey were given admission to the EU, massive migration to the other member countries of the EU would result. This paper develops a theoretical framework for the migration decision that takes into consideration the impact on uncertainty of some of the important economic and social variables that are addressed by the EU membership and institutions. It emphasizes future expectations of living conditions and the level of uncertainty associated with them as a key variable in making migration decisions. It suggests that the more prosperous and stable Turkey is expected to be in the future, the less likely a person will now want to migrate. Hence, the greater certainty now that Turkey will gain admission in to EU, the more attractive is it for potential migrants to remain in Turkey. This framework suggests that measures to hinder Turkey's entry into the EU by having national referendums to approve its entry will increase the uncertainty of the future economic and social prospects in Turkey and will encourage migrants to migrate now to the member countries of the EU.
    Keywords: Turkey, Migration, Uncertainty, Accession, European Union
    JEL: F22 J61
    Date: 2008–04
  10. By: Lemos, Sara (University of Leicester); Portes, Jonathan (Department for Work and Pensions, UK)
    Abstract: The UK was one of only three countries that granted free movement of workers to accession nationals following the enlargement of the European Union in May 2004. The resulting large, rapid and concentrated migration inflow can be seen as a natural experiment that arguably corresponds closely to an exogenous supply shock. We evaluate the impact of this migration inflow – one of the largest in British history – on the UK labour market. We use new monthly micro level data and an empirical approach that ascertains which particular labour markets in the UK – with varying degrees of natives' mobility and migrants' self-selection – may have been affected. Our results suggest modest effects throughout the labour market. Despite anecdotal evidence, we found little hard evidence that the inflow of accession migrants contributed to a fall in wages or a rise in claimant unemployment in the UK between 2004 and 2006.
    Keywords: migration, employment, wages, Central and Eastern Europe, UK
    JEL: J22
    Date: 2008–10
  11. By: Zhao Chen; Shiqing Jiang; Ming Lu; Hiroshi Sato
    Abstract: In this paper, we use the "2002 Chinese Household Income Project Survey" (CHIP2002) data to examine how heterogeneous social interactions affect the peer effect in the rural-urban migration decision in China. We find that the peer effect, measured by the village migration ratio, significantly increases the individual probability of outward migration. We also find that the magnitude of the peer effect is nonlinear, depending on the strength and type of social interactions with other villagers. Interactions in information sharing can increase the magnitude of the peer effect, while interactions in mutual help in labor activities, such as help in housing construction, nursing and farm work in busy seasons, will impede the positive role of the peer effect. Being aware of the simultaneity bias caused by the two-way causality between social interaction strengths and migration, we utilize "historical family political identity in land reform" as an instrumental variable for social interactions. However, the hypothesis that probit and instrumental-variable probit results are not significantly different is not rejected. The existence of a nonlinear peer effect has rich policy implications. For policy makers to encourage rural-urban migration, it is feasible to increase education investment in rural areas or increase information sharing among rural residents. However, only an increase in the constant term in the regression, i.e., a "big push" in improving institutions for migration, can help rural Chinese residents escape the low equilibrium in migration.
    Keywords: labor migration, urbanization, peer effect, social interaction, social multiplier
    JEL: J61 O15 R23
    Date: 2008–10
  12. By: David A. Grigorian; Tigran A. Melkonyan; J. Scott Shonkwiler
    Abstract: Empirical studies that use self-reported data on remittances to measure the latter's impact on microeconomic incentives mostly ignore the potential errors associated with reporting/measurement issues. An econometric procedure to control for these errors is developed and applied to household-level data from Armenia. We find evidence of systematic under-reporting of remittances. After controlling for this, we find a strong negative impact of remittances on incentives to work.
    Keywords: Workers remittances , Armenia , Data collection , Financial incentives , Labor supply , Economic models ,
    Date: 2008–09–30

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