nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2010‒09‒11
fifteen papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
Australian National University

  1. Social Ties and the Job Search of Recent Immigrants By Deepti Goel; Kevin Lang
  2. How Liberal are Citizenship Tests? By edited by Christian Joppke and Rainer BAUBÖCK
  3. Where Are all the Immigrant Organizations? Reassessing the Scope of Civil Society for Immigrant Communities By Gleeson, Shannon; Bloemraad, Irene
  4. Diversification of Microfinance Institutions: Determinants for Entering the Remittances Market By Ritha Sukadi Mata
  5. Ethnic Fragmentation, Conflict, Displaced Persons and Human Trafficking: An Empirical Analysis By Akee, Randall K. Q.; Basu, Arnab K.; Chau, Nancy; Khamis, Melanie
  6. Economic Choices and Status: Measuring Preferences for Income Rank By Mujcic, Redzo; Frijters, Paul
  7. The Politics of Seasonal Foreign Worker Admissions to France, 1974-2010 By Piotr Plewa
  8. Location Choices of Migrant Nest-Leavers: Spatial Assimilation or Continued Segregation? By Zorlu, Aslan; Mulder, Clara H.
  9. Context Matters: Latino Immigrant Civic Engagement in Nine US Cities, Reports on Latino Immigrant Civic Engagement By Bada, Xóchitl; Fox, Jonathan A; Donnelly, Robert; Selee, Andrew Dan
  10. Jordan: A Refugee Haven By Geraldine Chatelard
  11. Does Rural Household Income Depend on Neighboring Communities? Evidence from Israel By Kimhi, Ayal
  12. EU Policies and African Human Capital Development By Yaw Nyarko
  13. International Remittances, Domestic Remittances, and Income Inequality in the Dominican Republic By Kimhi, Ayal
  14. Remittances and their Response to Portfolio Variables By Catalina Amuedo-Dorantes; Susan Pozo
  15. Migration, Skill Composition and Growth By Lotti, E.; Young-Bae, K.; , Levine; P.,

  1. By: Deepti Goel; Kevin Lang
    Abstract: We show that increasing the probability of obtaining a job offer through the network should raise the observed mean wage in jobs found through formal (non-network) channels relative to that in jobs found through the network. This prediction also holds at all percentiles of the observed wage distribution, except the highest and lowest. The largest changes are likely to occur below the median. We test and conrm these implications using a survey of recent immigrants to Canada. We also develop a simple structural model, consistent with the theoretical model, and show that it can replicate the broad patterns in the data. For recent immigrants, our results are consistent with the primary effect of strong networks being to increase the arrival rate of offers rather than to alter the distribution from which offers are drawn.
    Keywords: social networks; search; close ties; wage determination; employment; unemployment
    JEL: J30 J61
    Date: 2010
  2. By: edited by Christian Joppke and Rainer BAUBÖCK
    Abstract: A significant number of –mostly Western European– countries have recently newly introduced citizenship tests or have added stricter requirements of civic knowledge to previously existing language tests. This working paper collects the contributions to a EUDO-CITIZENSHIP forum debate on whether such tests can be defended from a liberal perspective. The question: ‘How liberal are citizenship tests?’ can be interpreted in two ways: as a question whether applicants for naturalisation should be tested at all, or as a question about specific modes, contents and consequences of such tests that may make them either liberal or illiberal. In his kickoff contribution, Christian Joppke suggests an answer in line with the second interpretation by focusing on modes and contents. In his view, citizenship tests are defensible if applicants have reasonable opportunities to prepare for them and if questions are not inquisitive about individuals values and beliefs. Other authors claim instead that the most problematic feature of citizenship tests is the intention or effect of raising hurdles for naturalisation among long-term resident immigrants. Joseph Carens defends the view that ‘the most liberal citizenship test is none at all’. Ten authors have contributed to this lively and controversial debate, which concludes with a rejoinder by Christian Joppke.
    Keywords: citizenship
    Date: 2010–05–15
  3. By: Gleeson, Shannon; Bloemraad, Irene
    Abstract: In this article, we examine the coverage of immigrant civil society in a widely-used 501(c)3 database. We estimate the organizational undercount for four immigrant communities (Indian, Mexican, Portuguese and Vietnamese) across seven cities in Silicon Valley, using interviews with 160 key informants and community leaders and extensive examination of directories, databases and media (ethnic and mainstream). Focusing on publicly present non-profit organizations, we ask whether under-representation and undercounts of nonprofit organizations impact some migrants groups more than others, and whether patterns vary by type of city or organizational activity. We find substantial under-representation and organizational undercount across our four groups and seven cities. Representation is particularly worse in smaller cities, and the undercount especially affects attempts to accurately enumerate Mexican organizations. These findings have implications for resource inequalities and advocacy among minority communities, and for accurately judging the vitality of immigrant civil society when relying on standard 501(c)3 data sources.
    Date: 2010–02–16
  4. By: Ritha Sukadi Mata
    Abstract: As financial intermediaries, microfinance institutions (MFIs) contribute to integrate remittances into the formal financial system. Using a database including 225 MFIs from Latin America and the Caribbean, this paper investigates the institutional factors that influence the MFI decision-making process of entering the remittances market. Operational, managerial, and financial performances are considered as potential explanatory factors. Results exhibit that financial performance has the highest impact on the MFIs’ decision to diversify by offering a remittances service.
    Keywords: microfinance; remittances; money transfer activity; diversification
    JEL: G21 L25 O15 O16
    Date: 2010–09
  5. By: Akee, Randall K. Q. (Tufts University); Basu, Arnab K. (College of William and Mary); Chau, Nancy (Cornell University); Khamis, Melanie (IZA)
    Abstract: Ethnic conflicts and their links to international human trafficking have recently received a surge in international attention. It appears that ethnic conflicts exacerbate the internal displacement of individuals from networks of family and community, and their access to economic and social safety nets. These same individuals are then vulnerable to being trafficked by the hopes of better economic prospects elsewhere. In this paper, we empirically examine this link between ethnic fragmentation, conflicts, internally displaced persons (IDPs), refugees and international trafficking, making use of a novel dataset of international trafficking. We conduct a direct estimation, which highlights the ultimate impact of ethnic fragmentation and conflict on international trafficking through internal and international displacements.
    Keywords: ethnic fragmentation, conflict, displaced persons, human trafficking
    JEL: R23 D74 O11 Z12
    Date: 2010–08
  6. By: Mujcic, Redzo (University of Queensland); Frijters, Paul (University of Queensland)
    Abstract: In this paper we report on the trade-offs that 1,068 Australian university students make between absolute income and the rank of that income in hypothetical income distributions. We find that income rank matters independently of absolute income, with greater weight given to rank by males, migrants, and individuals from wealthy families. Rank-sensitive individuals require as much as a 200 per cent increase in income to be compensated for going from the top to the bottom of the income distribution. In terms of reference groups, we find migrants who reside abroad for longer periods of time, and with more affluent job titles, are more likely to compare themselves to others at the destination. This allows us to derive a dynamic choice model of compensating incomes that allows for endogenous tastes and rates of assimilation. The model predicts the average respondent to need a permanent increase in income of up to $10,000 when moving from a society with a mean income of $14,000 (e.g. Mexico) to a society with a mean income of $46,000 (e.g. the USA).
    Keywords: relative utility, status, income rank, stated-preferences, migrants
    JEL: C91 J61
    Date: 2010–08
  7. By: Piotr Plewa
    Abstract: In response to the economic crisis of 1973/74 the French government curbed the admissions of seasonal foreign workers. By 2010 the curbs have remained in effect, however, the number of foreign workers authorized to work in French seasonal agriculture under exceptional circumstances has been growing. The study inquires about the mechanisms and actors responsible for this gradual policy change. It argues that the gradual expansion of seasonal foreign worker policy admissions to France has been possible due to the remarkable ability of fruit and vegetable growers from the province of Bouches-du-Rhône to expand their pro-seasonal foreign worker advocacy and thereby socialize the key policymakers to the adoption of amendments accounting for gradual policy change.
    Keywords: immigration policy; agriculture policy; France; Spain; policy networks; socialization
    Date: 2010–07–15
  8. By: Zorlu, Aslan (University of Amsterdam); Mulder, Clara H. (University of Amsterdam)
    Abstract: We examine ethnic differences in the ethnic composition of the destination neighbourhood upon leaving the parental home using administrative data for the entire birth cohort 1983 living in the Netherlands. The analysis provides little evidence of a clear intergenerational break in the location choices of young men and women from a non-western origin compared to their parents. The neighbourhood choice pattern of those who leave the parental home for independent and shared living arrangements does not differ markedly from that of their parents, while nest-leavers for union formation are more likely to move to neighbourhoods with a relatively small proportion of non-western inhabitants. A decomposition analysis indicates that an overwhelmingly large part of neighbourhood choice is explained by differences in background variables. Particularly, the origin neighbourhood type of nest-leavers seems to be a driving force underlying the choice of destination neighbourhood, given individual and parental socioeconomic characteristics.
    Keywords: leaving home, spatial assimilation, migrants
    JEL: J15 J61
    Date: 2010–08
  9. By: Bada, Xóchitl; Fox, Jonathan A; Donnelly, Robert; Selee, Andrew Dan
    Keywords: civic engagement, immigrant, Latino
    Date: 2010–04–01
  10. By: Geraldine Chatelard (IFPO - Institut Français du Proche-Orient - MIN AFF ETRANG - CNRS : USR3135)
    Abstract: Migration to, from, and across Jordan since the Palestinian exodus of 1948 has played a key role in the country's politics, economy, and society. These movements have several underlying, interacting patterns. The main ones are connected to regional geopolitics, the fluctuations of the oil economy in the Persian Gulf, and efforts by the kingdom's Hashemite monarchy to ensure its own stability. Jordan is a case in point for how various forms of mobility can have strong political and economic implications, both domestically and regionally.
    Keywords: Jordan; Migration; Refugees; Economy; Politics
    Date: 2010
  11. By: Kimhi, Ayal
    Abstract: In Israel, rural communities are those with up to 2000 residents, and rural areas include only rural communities. This paper explores the dependence of rural incomes on nearby urban areas. This dependence is mostly implied by rural-to-urban or urban-to-rural selective migration (or both). Migration flows can be affected by differential wages, housing costs and other amenities, and by commuting costs and costs of migration. An income generating equation, that includes characteristics of nearby urban communities as well as other spatial indicators among the explanatory variables, is estimated for rural households in Moshav villages using 2006 survey data. The results show that the population of nearby urban communities is significantly associated with rural household per-capita income. In particular, the urban population within 10 km is positively associated with per-capita income, while the urban population within 10 to 40 km is negatively associated with per-capita income. These opposite effects suggest that commuting costs are among the major determinants of the direction of the net migration of high-income households. Surprisingly, other spatial variables, including average per-capita income in nearby urban communities, do not affect rural income significantly.
    Keywords: Community/Rural/Urban Development, Consumer/Household Economics,
    Date: 2010
  12. By: Yaw Nyarko
    Abstract: Brain Circulation between the European Union (EU) and Sub-Saharan Africa is a crucial ingredient in Human Capital formation in the latter. A major constraint to African development is the very low base of skilled and highly educated workers and professionals. The production of skilled workers has been low, and only recently has seen a dramatic increase. Recent papers by many authors have indicated that a channel for human capital growth has been, paradoxically, the possibility of the brain drain which serves as both an incentive mechanism and which results in higher human capital when the drainers return. After a review of some of the literature, these insights are applied to the debates raging today on European Union migration policy: the Blue Card, Migration Con-tracts, anti-Brain Drain legislation, etc. This paper argues that a careful calibration of the EU policies may enable faster Human Capital growth in Africa, while, at the same time, being beneficial to the EU by supplying critically needed skills into the EU economy. By carefully planning the production of human capital and the consequent flow of skilled migrants into Europe, the EU can assist in the development of vitally needed numbers of trained or skilled workers in Africa.
    Date: 2010–04–15
  13. By: Kimhi, Ayal
    Abstract: Inequality decomposition techniques are used to analyze the different impacts of domestic and international remittances on household income inequality in the Dominican Republic. Domestic remittances seem more likely to be equalizing than international remittances. The negative marginal effect on inequality of domestic remittances is more prominent among rural households, and in particular among landless rural households, while the negative marginal effect on inequality of international remittances is more prominent among urban households, and in particular outside of the Santo Domingo area. Stronger marginal effects of remittances were found among female-headed households, the elderly and the less educated. Both domestic and international remittances are higher among female-headed households and the elderly. Education is associated with lower domestic remittances and higher international remittances, probably reflecting the role of education in promoting international versus domestic migration. An increase in schooling increases inequality through domestic remittances and decreases inequality through international remittances, while a reduction in household size reduces inequality through both domestic and international remittances. This analysis highlights the importance of the distinction between domestic and international remittances as drivers of inequality as well as the importance of identifying and quantifying the determinants of remittances and their subsequent impact on inequality.
    Keywords: Demand and Price Analysis, International Development, Public Economics,
    Date: 2010
  14. By: Catalina Amuedo-Dorantes (Department of Economics, San Diego State University); Susan Pozo (Department of Economics, Western Michigan University)
    Abstract: Using a recent Spanish database on immigrants from all across the globe, we show that remittances respond to differences in macroeconomic conditions at home and abroad. This behavior suggests that immigrants are sophisticated economic optimizers who take advantage of differential returns when accumulating assets. Immigrants remit more when per capita GDP growth rates at home are greater than in Spain, when the home-host real interest-rate differential increases, and when real exchange-rate uncertainty is higher. These patterns differ with ownership of home country assets and with the area of the globe from which immigrants originate, whether it is Africa, the Americas, Europe or Asia. The response of remittances to cross-country differences in portfolio variables suggests that remittances may not be counter-cyclical as often claimed. Hence, paradoxically, while remittances may promote consumption-smoothing at the individual or household level, remittances cannot be relied upon to shore up migrant- sending economies in times of need.
    Date: 2010–09
  15. By: Lotti, E.; Young-Bae, K.; , Levine; P.,
    Abstract: The UK, with its relatively liberal immigration policies following recent enlargements, has been one of the main recipients of migrants from new EU member states. This paper poses the questions: what is the effect of immigration on a receiving economy such as the UK? Is the effect beneficial or adverse for growth? How differently would skilled (or unskilled) migration affect both receiving and sending economies? What factors would contribute to immigration/emigration benefits/costs and economic growth driven by migration? Who are the winners and losers in both the sending and host regions? We utilize an endogenous growth two-bloc model with labour mobility of different skill compositions to address these questions. We show that migration, in general, is beneficial to the receiving country and increases the world growth rate. With remittances, the sending country in aggregate can also benefit. The only exception is in the case of unskilled migration, which can actually have a detrimental impact on the world growth rate. Winners are migrants, and the skill group in the region that sees its relative size decrease. <br><br> Keywords; Migration, Labour mobility, Skill composition, Economic growth. <br><br> JEL Classification: F22, F43, J24, J61, O41
    Date: 2010–08–01

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