nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2009‒03‒07
five papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
Australian National University

  1. Remittances and Temporary Migration By Christian Dustmann; Josep Mestres
  2. Return Migration: an Empirical Investigation By Zakharenko, Roman
  3. The impact of EU accession on human capital formation : can migration fuel a brain gain ? By Farchy, Emily
  4. Connecting lagging and leading regions : the role of labor mobility By Lall, Somik V.; Timmins, Christopher; Yu, Shouyue
  5. Cosmopolitanism, Assignment Duration, and Expatriate Adjustment: The Trade-Off between Well-Being and Performance By Luc Wathieu; Amir Grinstein

  1. By: Christian Dustmann (Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration, Department of Economics, University College London); Josep Mestres (Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration, Department of Economics, University College London)
    Abstract: In this paper we study the remittance behavior of immigrants and how it relates to temporary versus permanent migration plans. We use a unique data source that provides unusual detail on remittances and return plans, and follows the same household over time. Our data allows us also to distinguish between different purposes of remittances. We analyze the association between individual and household characteristics and the geographic location of the family as well as return plans, and remittances. The panel nature of our data allows us to condition on household fixed effects. To address measurement error and reverse causality, we use an instrumental variable estimator. Our results show that changes in return plans are related to large changes in remittance flows.
    Date: 2009–02
  2. By: Zakharenko, Roman
    Abstract: Many people emigrating abroad eventually return home. Yet, little is known about the returnees: who are they and how do they compare to those who did not return? How does their decision to return depend on economic situation at home? In this paper, I empirically analyze the propensity of US immigrants to return. To identify return migration, I use the method adopted from Van Hook (2006). The method is based the U.S. Current Population Survey (CPS) which interviews households for two consecutive years. About a quarter of foreign-born individuals drop out of the sample between the first and the second years, due to various causes including return migration. After eliminating all other causes of dropout, I estimate the propensity of immigrants to return, depending on personal and home country characteristics. I find that the difference between recent immigrants and other immigrants is greater than the difference between men and women, or skilled and unskilled migrants. Thus, assimilation differentiates immigrants more in their decision to return than education or gender. In particular, distance to home country negatively affects return propensity of those who arrived over 10 years ago, and has no effect on recent immigrants.
    Keywords: return migration; panel attrition; assimilation
    JEL: F22 O15 J61
    Date: 2008–06
  3. By: Farchy, Emily
    Abstract: Can a brain drain be good for development? Many studies have established the theoretical possibility of such a brain gain. Yet it is only recently that the relaxation of data constraints has allowed for sound empirical assessments. In utilizing the dramatic policy change that accompanied European Union accession as a natural experiment, this paper is able to assuage fears of reverse causality between migration and human capital formation. The results highlight a significant impact of European Union accession on human capital formation indicating that the prospect of migration can indeed fuel skill formation even in the context of middle-income economies. And, if accompanied by policies to promote return migration, as well as a functioning credit market to enable private investment, international labor mobility could represent a powerful tool for growth.
    Keywords: Population Policies,Economic Theory&Research,Labor Policies,Tertiary Education,Access to Finance
    Date: 2009–02–01
  4. By: Lall, Somik V.; Timmins, Christopher; Yu, Shouyue
    Abstract: How can policies improve the welfare of people in economically lagging regions of countries? Should policies help jobs follow people? Or should they enable people to follow jobs? In most countries, market forces have encouraged the geographic concentration of people and economic activities - policies that try to offset these forces to encourage balanced economic growth have largely been unsuccessful. However, policies that help people get closer to economic density have improved individual welfare. In this paper, the authors examine the migration decisions of working-age Brazilians and find that the pull of higher wages in leading regions has a strong influence on the decision to migrate. However, many people are also"pushed"to migrate, starved of access to basic public services such as clean water and sanitation in their hometowns. Although migration is welfare-improving for these individuals, the economy may end up worse off as these migrants are more likely to add to congestion costs in cities than to contribute to agglomeration benefits. Encouraging human capital formation can stimulate labor mobility for economic gain; and improving access to and quality of basic services in lagging regions will directly improve welfare as well as reduce the type of migration motivated by the search for life-supporting basic services.
    Keywords: Transport Economics Policy&Planning,Population Policies,Banks&Banking Reform,Labor Policies,Access to Finance
    Date: 2009–02–01
  5. By: Luc Wathieu (ESMT European School of Management and Technology); Amir Grinstein (Guilford Glazer School of Business and Management, Ben Gurion University of the Negev)
    Abstract: This paper questions the notion that expatriates should adjust to their host country, by showing that adjustment and its consequences are affected by cosmopolitanism and expected assignment duration. A study of 260 expatriates in the U.S. reveals that cosmopolitans expecting shorter (longer) assignments adjust more (less) to both work and non-work aspects of their host country, and that this is associated with increased well-being. In contrast, for non-cosmopolitans, more well-being occurs when longer (shorter) expected assignments are accompanied by increased (decreased) work and non-work adjustment. Further, from the findings emerges a clash between two aspects of successful expatriation - well-being and professional success: while non-work adjustment is not always associated with well-being, work adjustment is positively related to assignment performance across conditions and subjects.
    Keywords: Expatriates, international assignment, cosmopolitanism, crossculture adjustment, multinational corporations, preference persistence, assignment duration, survey method
    JEL: D23
    Date: 2008–12–09

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