nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2008‒11‒11
fifteen papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
Australian National University

  1. City Beautiful By Carlino, Gerald A.; Saiz, Albert
  2. Low-Skilled Immigration and th Expansion of Private Schools By Davide, DOTTORI; I-Ling, SHEN
  3. The effect of male migration for work on employment patterns of females in nepal By Lokshin, Michael; Glinskaya, Elena
  4. Agglomeration and growth: the effects of commuting costs By Antonio Accetturo
  5. Voting over Selective Immigration Policies with Immigration Aversion By Giuseppe Russo
  6. When Migrant Remittances Are Not Everlasting, How Can Morocco Make Up? By Fida Karam
  7. The Skill Composition of Immigrants and the Generosity of the Welfare State: Free vs. Policy-Controlled Migration By Alon Cohen; Assaf Razin
  8. Low-skilled Immigration and Education Policy with Endogenous Fertility By Davide, DOTTORI; I. Ling, SHEN
  9. The Determinants of Regional Migration in Great Britain: A Duration Approach By Andrews, Martyn J.; Clark, Ken; Whittaker, William
  10. Crime, Unemployment, and Xenophobia? An Ecological Analysis of Right-Wing Election Results in Hamburg, 1986−2005 By Rotte, Ralph; Steininger, Martin
  11. Extending the case for a beneficial brain drain By Simone Bertoli; Herbert Brücker
  12. Diaspora Externalities and Technology Diffusion By Elisabetta, LODIGIANI
  13. Assimilation to a Welfare State: Labor Market Performance and Use of Social Benefits by Immigrants to Finland By Matti Sarvimäki
  14. Post-1500 Population Flows and the Long Run Determinants of Economic Growth and Inequality By Louis Putterman; David N. Weil
  15. Fertility of migrants: a comparative study between Italy and Russia By Eleonora Mussino; Alyson van Raalte

  1. By: Carlino, Gerald A. (Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia); Saiz, Albert (Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania)
    Abstract: The city beautiful movement, which in the early 20th Century advocated city beautification as a way to improve the living conditions and civic virtues of the urban dweller, had languished by the Great Depression. Today, new urban economic theory and policymakers are coming to see the provision of consumer leisure amenities as a way to attract population, especially the highly skilled and their employers. However, past studies have only provided indirect evidence of the importance of leisure amenities for urban development. In this paper we propose and validate the number of leisure trips to MSAs as a measure of consumer revealed preferences for local leisure-oriented amenities. Population and employment growth in the 1990s was about 2 percent higher in an MSA with twice as many leisure visits: the third most important predictor of recent population growth in standardized terms. Moreover, this variable does a good job at forecasting out-of-sample growth for the period 2000–2006. "Beautiful cities" disproportionally attracted highly-educated individuals, and experienced faster housing price appreciation, especially in supply-inelastic markets. Investment by local government in new public recreational areas within an MSA was positively associated with higher subsequent city attractiveness. In contrast to the generally declining trends in the American central city, neighborhoods that were close to "central recreational districts" have experienced economic growth, albeit at the cost of minority displacement.
    Keywords: internal migration, amenities, urban population growth
    JEL: J11 J61 R23
    Date: 2008–10
  2. By: Davide, DOTTORI; I-Ling, SHEN
    Abstract: This paper studies the impact of low-skilled immigration on the host countryÕs education system, which is characterized by sources of school funding, expenditres per pupil, and types of parents who are more likely to send children to publicly (privately) funded schools. When the size of low-skilled immigrants is large, it is found that wealthier natives are likely to opt out from public into private schools. Four main effects of immigration are taken into account : (1) greater congestion in public school; (2) lower average tax base for education funding; (3) reduced low-skilled wage and so more low-skilled natives to privately invest in their childrenÕs education and hence weakens their support to finance public school. The theoretical predictions are not at odds with cross-country stylized facts revealed in both micro and macro data. Moreover, with endogenous fertility, the opting-out decision taken by some native parents results in the empirically observed fertility differential between natives and immigrants
    Keywords: Voting, Taxes and Subsidies, Education, Fertility, Migration
    JEL: H42 H52 I21 D72 O15
    Date: 2008–07–09
  3. By: Lokshin, Michael; Glinskaya, Elena
    Abstract: This paper assesses the impact of work-related migration by males on the labor market behavior of females in Nepal. Using data from the 2004 Nepal household survey, the authors apply the Instrumental Variable Full Information Maximum Likelihood method to account for unobserved factors that could simultaneously affect males'decision to migrate and females'decision to participate in the labor market. The results indicate that male migration for work has a negative impact on the level of market work participation by the women left behind. The authors find evidence of substantial heterogeneity (based both on observable and unobservable characteristics) in the impact of male migration. The findings highlight the important gender dimension of the impact of predominantly male worker migration on the wellbeing of sending households. The authors argue that strategies for economic development in Nepal should take into account such gender aspects of the migration dynamics.
    Keywords: Population Policies,Anthropology,Gender and Development,Housing&Human Habitats,Gender and Law
    Date: 2008–10–01
  4. By: Antonio Accetturo (Bank of Italy, Regional Economic Research Staff, Milan Branch)
    Abstract: We present a model of industrial location and endogenous growth with congestion costs. According to the interplay between knowledge spillovers and commuting costs, we are able to obtain both a Krugman-type and a bell-shaped agglomeration outcome. In the first case, the economy experiences a permanent income inequality in the steady state and income divergence in the transitional dynamics. In the second case, we observe an enlargement of the industrial core of the economy with a strong catching up by the periphery. Welfare analysis shows that congestion create (in the bell-shaped agglomeration case) a negative welfare effect on peripheral unskilled workers and renders the agglomerated equilibrium Pareto inferior to dispersion.
    Keywords: Congestion, Endogenous Growth, Migration
    JEL: R11 O11
    Date: 2008–09
  5. By: Giuseppe Russo
    Abstract: The claim that "skilled immigration is welcome" is often associated to the increasing adoption of selective immigration policies. I study the voting over differentiated immigration policies in a two-country, three-factor one-period model where there exist skilled and unskilled workers, migration decisions are endogenous, enforcing immigration restriction is costly, and natives dislike unskilled immigration. According to my findings, decisions over border closure are made to protect the median voter when her capital endowment is sufficiently small. Therefore I argue that the professed favour for skilled immigration veils the protection for the insiders. This result is confirmed by the observation that entry is rationed for both skilled and unskilled workers. Moreover, immigration aversion helps to explain the existence of entry barriers for unskilled workers in countries where the majority of voters is skilled.
    Keywords: Selective immigration policies, multidimensional voting, Condorcet winner.
    JEL: D72 F22 J18
    Date: 2008–10–24
  6. 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
  7. By: Alon Cohen; Assaf Razin
    Abstract: The paper analyzes the effect of the generosity of the welfare state on the skill composition of immigrants. We develop a parsimonious model in which the effect of an increase in the generosity (and taxes) of the welfare state on the skill composition of immigrants under free migration is negative. The reason is that welfare state benefits attract unskilled migrants because they contribute to tax revenues less than what they gain from benefits; and this generosity works to deter skilled immigrants, because they contribute in taxes more than in benefits. In sharp contrast, the effect of an increase in the generosity (and taxes) of the welfare state on the skill composition of migrants is positive if migration is controlled by policy. Being net contributors to the welfare state, skilled migrants can help finance a more generous welfare-state system; thus, they are preferred by the policy maker over unskilled migrants. We take the prediction of the model to cross-sectional data on source-host, OECD-EU country pairs in the year 2000. The identification strategy is to use the decomposition the source-host country pairs into two groups: one group, a "free migration" group, source-host country pairs within the EU, and another group, "policy-controlled migration" group, the pairs from non-EU countries into the EU. We find evidence in support of the predictions of the parsimonious model, that the generosity of the welfare state adversely affects the skill-composition of migrants under free migration; but it exerts a more positive effect under controlled migration, relative to the free migration regime.
    JEL: F15 F2 F22
    Date: 2008–10
  8. By: Davide, DOTTORI (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Department of Economics); I. Ling, SHEN (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Department of Economics)
    Abstract: This paper studies the impact of low-skilled immigration on the host countryÕs education policy, which is formulated by the natives via voting and refers to both school funding sources and resources in the public funded schools. When the size of low-skilled immigrants is large, it is found that wealthier natives are likely to opt out from public into private school. Four main effects of immigration are taken into account : (1) greater congestion in public school; (2) lower average tax base for education funding; (3) reduced low-skilled wage and so more low-skilled nativesÕ dependence on public education; (4) higher skill premium, which induces high-skilled natives to privately invest in their childrenÕ s education and hence weakens their support to finance public school. The theoretical predictions are not at odds with cross-country stylized facts revealed in both micro and macro data. Moreover, with endogenous fertility, the opting-out decision taken by some native parents results in the empirically observed fertility differential between natives and immigrants
    Keywords: voting, taxes and subsidies, education; fertitlity, migration
    JEL: H42 H52 I21 D72 O15
    Date: 2008–06–19
  9. By: Andrews, Martyn J. (University of Manchester); Clark, Ken (University of Manchester); Whittaker, William (University of Manchester)
    Abstract: Using data from the first fourteen waves of the British Household Panel Survey, we estimate a discrete duration model of interregional migration in Great Britain. By exploiting retrospective information on residency we control for late entry as well as unobserved heterogeneity. We find considerable duration dependence in region of residence in the raw data, most but not all of which disappears when controlling for observable and unobservable differences between individuals. Older workers are less likely to switch region while the better educated are more mobile. There are also some differences between males and females in their likelihood to migrate.
    Keywords: regional labour markets, panel data, hazard, duration, migration
    JEL: C14 C23 C41 J24 J61 R23
    Date: 2008–10
  10. By: Rotte, Ralph (RWTH Aachen University); Steininger, Martin (University of Munich)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the consequences of immigration, crime and socio-economic depriviation for the performance of right-wing extremist and populist parties in the German city state of Hamburg between 1986 and 2005. The ecological determinants of voting for right-wing parties on the district level are compared to those for mainstream and other protest parties. Parallels and differences in spatial characteristics between right-wing extremist and populist parties' performance are identified. Our empirical results tend to confirm the general contextual sociological theory of right-wing radicalization by general social deprivation and immigration. Nevertheless they indicate that one has to be very cautious when interpreting the unemployment/crime - right-winger nexus. Moreover, crime does not seem to have a strong significant effect on right-wing populist parties' election successes despite its importance for their programmes and campaigns.
    Keywords: elections, political extremism, labor market policy, welfare policy, immigration
    JEL: D60 D72 I28 J60 P16
    Date: 2008–10
  11. By: Simone Bertoli (Università degli Studi di Firenze, Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche); Herbert Brücker (Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB))
    Abstract: The recent literature about the so called brain drain assumes that destination countries are characterized not only by higher wages than the source country, but also by a higher or at least not lower relative return to skill. As this assumption has a doubtful empirical validity, we assess whether the main prediction of this literature, namely the possibility of a beneficial brain gain, still holds under the reverse assumption. We show that there is still a case for a beneficial brain drain. Immigration policies that are biased against unskilled workers are not necessary for a beneficial brain drain to occur once one considers that agents face heterogeneous migration costs.
    Keywords: migration; brain drain; skill premium; heterogeneous agents; selective immigration policies
    JEL: F22 J24 O15
    Date: 2008
  12. By: Elisabetta, LODIGIANI (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Department of Economics)
    Abstract: The aim of this paper is to highlight the positive and important role that skilled migration can have on TFP growth in the sendind countries, when diaspora effects in technology diffusion are introduced. To investigate our issue, we start from a previous paper by Vandenbussche, Aghion and Costa Methir (2006), in which they examine the contribution of human capital to economic growth, where technological improvements are a result of a combination between innovation and imitation. Considering the impact of a positive externality on growth due to skilled migration, we show that a marginal increase in the stock of skilled human capital contributes more to productivity growth if a state is closer to the technological frontier and migration should raise growth in area from the frontier. Also, we provide evidence in favour of this prediction by using a panel dataset covering 92 countries between 1980 and 2000. Even if our empirical study has a lot of shortcomings, given the small number of countries and of time periods due to the current availability of data in the existing cross-country datasets, this works is the first one that attempt to investigate the relationship between growth and networks externalities, underlying the importance of the skilled diaspora in the transfer of ideas.
    Keywords: Economic growth, Imitation, Innovation, Migration, Brain drain, Diaspora
    JEL: F22 O15 O30 Z13
    Date: 2008–02–28
  13. By: Matti Sarvimäki
    Abstract: Abstract: I study the assimilation of immigrants to the Finnish labor market and welfare system. The initial immigrant-native earnings gaps are large. While longterm immigrants experience a rapid earnings growth, only men from OECD countries converge to natives' earnings. Among all immigrant groups earnings grow predominantly due to improving employment rates rather than wage growth. Earnings profiles for temporary immigrants are flat. Furthermore, direct study of the use of social benefits suggests that immigrants learn to use the welfare system gradually. In particular, non-OECD households substantially increase their use of social assistance during their first five years in the country despite simultaneously doubling their earnings. JEL classification: J61, J31, F22
    Keywords: Immigrants, assimilation, welfare state, social benefits
    Date: 2008–10–14
  14. By: Louis Putterman; David N. Weil
    Abstract: We construct a matrix showing the share of the year 2000 population in every country that is descended from people in different source countries in the year 1500. Using this matrix, we analyze how post-1500 migration has influenced the level of GDP per capita and within-country income inequality in the world today. Indicators of early development such as early state history and the timing of transition to agriculture have much better predictive power for current GDP when one looks at the ancestors of the people who currently live in a country than when one considers the history on that country's territory, without adjusting for migration. Measures of the ethnic or linguistic heterogeneity of a country's current population do not predict income inequality as well as measures of the ethnic or linguistic heterogeneity of the current population's ancestors. An even better predictor of current inequality in a country is the variance of early development history of the country's inhabitants, with ethnic groups originating in regions having longer histories of agriculture and organized states tending to be at the upper end of a country's income distribution. However, high within-country variance of early development also predicts higher income per capita, holding constant the average level of early development.
    JEL: F22 N30 O40
    Date: 2008–10
  15. By: Eleonora Mussino (Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany); Alyson van Raalte (Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany)
    Abstract: This paper contributes to the analysis of fertility differentials between migrants and the native-born by examining the transition to first child using event history analysis. The data examined are the first-wave Italian Families and Social Subjects Survey conducted in 2003 and the first-wave Russian Gender and Generations Survey conducted in 2004. The objective of the study is twofold: First we seek to determine whether differences exist in the decision and timing of childbearing between native and foreign-born women in Italy and in Russia. Second we aim to compare the experiences of immigrants in the two countries, to determine whether there may be any commonalities inherent to the immigrant populations, despite moving into widely different contexts. Our results show many similarities in the risk profiles of our two immigrant groups which is more suggestive of immigrants being a distinct group rather than assimilating or conforming to the native fertility patterns. Second, our results do not seem to confirm the presence of either disruption or family formation being key events associated with migration.
    Keywords: Italy, Russia, fertility, immigrants
    JEL: J1 Z0
    Date: 2008–10

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