nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2010‒10‒09
sixteen papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
Australian National University

  1. Understanding Neighbourhood Effects: Selection Bias and Residential Mobility By Bergström, Lina; van Ham, Maarten
  2. Social Ties and the Job Search of Recent Immigrants By Deepti Goel; Kevin Lang
  3. Positive but also negative effects of ethnic diversity in schools on educational performance? An empirical test using cross-national PISA data. By Dronkers, Jaap
  4. Competition in the quality of higher education: the impact of students' mobility By Gabrielle Demange; Robert Fenge
  5. Living arrangements of second generation immigrants in Spain: A cross-classified multilevel analysis By Agnese Vitali; Bruno Arpino
  6. The Impact of Ireland's Recession on the Labour Market Outcomes of its Immigrants By Barrett, Alan; Kelly, Elish
  7. The Importance of Heterogeneity When Examining Immigrant Education-Occupation Mismatch: Evidence from New Zealand By Poot, Jacques; Stillman, Steven
  8. Assimilation and Integration of Immigrants in Europe By Aleksynska, Mariya; Algan, Yann
  9. Post-Socialist International Migration: The Case of China-to-South Korea Ethnic Labour Migration By Kim, Anna Myunghee
  10. Human Capital and Population Growth in Non-Metropolitan U.S. Counties: The Importance of College Student Migration By Winters, John V
  11. In Search of a Better Life: The Occupational Attainment of Rural and Urban Migrants in China By Ayako Kondo; Dongshu Ou
  12. Occupational Choice of Return Migrants in Moldova By Borodak, Daniela; Piracha, Matloob
  13. Conditional occupational segregation of minorities in the U.S. By Carlos Gradín
  14. The economic impact of international remittances on poverty and household consumption and investment in Indonesia By Adams, Richard H., Jr.; Cuecuecha, Alfredo
  15. Assesing the Impact of Remittances on Child Education in Ecuador: The role of educational supply constraints By Benedictis, Geovana; Calfat, Germán; Jara, Karina
  16. Migração: uma revisão sobre algumas das principais teorias By Mauro Augusto dos Santos; Alisson Flávio Barbieri; José Alberto Magno de Carvalho; Carla Jorge Machado

  1. By: Bergström, Lina (Uppsala University); van Ham, Maarten (University of St. Andrews)
    Abstract: The number of studies investigating neighbourhood effects has increased rapidly over the last two decades. Although many of these studies claim to have found evidence for neighbourhood effects, most 'evidence' is likely the result of reversed causality. The main challenge in modelling neighbourhood effects is the (econometric) identification of causal effects. The most severe problem is selection bias as a result of selective sorting into neighbourhoods. This paper argues that in order to further our understanding of neighbourhood effects we should explicitly incorporate neighbourhood sorting into our models. Neighbourhood effect studies are in the situation where the processes behind one of its key methodological problems (selection bias) are also critical to fully understand the neighbourhood context itself. It is thus remarkable that residential mobility and neighbourhood sorting has been almost completely ignored in the neighbourhood effects literature.
    Keywords: neighbourhoods, selective mobility, neighbourhood effects, selection bias, migration, residential mobility
    JEL: I30 J60 R23
    Date: 2010–09
  2. By: Deepti Goel; Kevin Lang
    Abstract: It is shown 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. [Working Paper No. 189].
    Keywords: job offereing, formal, social ties, median, wages, observed mean,
    Date: 2010
  3. By: Dronkers, Jaap
    Abstract: In this inaugural lecture, I will estimate the effects on language skills of two characteristics of school populations: average/share and diversity, both on the ethnic and the sociocultural dimension. I will use the cross-national PISA 206 data, for both 15-year-old native pupils and pupils with an immigrant background. A larger ethnic diversity of schools in secondary education hampers the educational performance of both pupils with an immigrant background and native pupils, but the negative effects are smaller in education systems with little stratification and strongest in highly stratified education systems. The sociocultural diversity of schools does not have an effect on educational performance, but these effects are positive in highly stratified educational systems and negative in hardly stratified systems. However, the average parental educational level of schools is very important for the educational performance of children, and this hardly differs between education systems. A higher share of pupils with an immigrant background in a school hampers educational performance, but if these pupils have the same regional origin (Islamic countries; non-Islamic Asian countries), a higher share of pupils with an immigrant background at that school promotes educational performance. Pupils originating from Islamic countries have substantially lower language scores than equivalent pupils with an immigrant background from other regions. This cannot be explained by the individual socioeconomic backgrounds, school characteristics, or education systems.
    Keywords: immigration; educational performance; country of origin; ethnic school diversity; social-economic school diversity; ethnic and social-economic share/average of schools; educational systems
    JEL: I21 J61 J24
    Date: 2010–06–17
  4. By: Gabrielle Demange; Robert Fenge
    Abstract: This paper analyzes in a two-country model the impact of students' mobility on the country-specific level of higher educational quality. Individuals decide whether and where to study based on their individual ability and the implemented quality of education. We show that the mobility of students affects educational quality in countries and welfare in a very different way depending on the degree of return migration. With a low return probability, countries choose suboptimally differentiated levels of educational quality, or even no differentiation at all.
    Date: 2010
  5. By: Agnese Vitali; Bruno Arpino
    Abstract: Using a cross-classified multilevel modelling approach, we study the probability of living outside the parental home for second generation immigrants in Spain, a "latest-late" transition to adulthood country. We simultaneously take into account two sources of heterogeneity: the country of origin and the province of residence in Spain. Using micro-census data we are able to consider all main immigrant groups. We find that living arrangements vary extremely according to immigrants’ origin, although a geographical clustering emerges. The cultural heritage, as represented for example by the mean age at marriage in the country of origin, still plays an important role in shaping second generation immigrants’ patterns of co-residence with their parents. Even though the effect of the province of residence is less pronounced, it is not negligible. In particular, the cultural climate of the province, as measured by the proportion of cohabiting couples, is found to be influential for both immigrant and native young adults’ living arrangements.
    Keywords: cross-classified multilevel models, living arrangements, second generation immigrants, Spain, young adults
    Date: 2010–10
  6. By: Barrett, Alan (ESRI, Dublin); Kelly, Elish (Economic and Social Research Institute, Dublin)
    Abstract: In the mid 2000s Ireland experienced a large inflow of immigrants, partly in response to strong economic growth but also in response to its decision to allow full access to its labour market when EU expansion occurred in May 2004. Between 2004 and 2007, the proportion of non-nationals living in Ireland almost doubled, increasing from 7.7 to 13.1 percent. Between 2008 and 2009, Ireland experienced one of the most acute downturns in economic activity in the industrialised world, with a cumulative fall in Gross National Product of close to 14 percent. In this paper, we assess how this downturn has impacted upon the employment outcomes of non-nationals relative to natives. We find huge job losses among immigrants, with an annual rate of job loss of close to 20 percent in 2009, compared to 7 percent for natives. A higher rate of job loss for immigrants is found to remain when we control for factors such as age and education. We also show how an outflow of non-nationals is occurring. The findings have many implications. In particular, the results point to economic vulnerability for immigrants. However, they also point to a potential macroeconomic benefit to Ireland in terms of a flexible labour supply adjustment.
    Keywords: recession, Ireland, immigration
    JEL: J61
    Date: 2010–09
  7. By: Poot, Jacques (University of Waikato); Stillman, Steven (Motu Economic and Public Policy Research Trust)
    Abstract: Many immigrants are overqualified in their first job after arrival in the host country. Education-occupation mismatch can affect the economic integration of immigrants and the returns to education and experience. The extent of this problem has been measured in recent years by means of micro level data in Australia, North America and Europe. However, these papers have typically ignored the importance of allowing for heterogeneity, in particular by qualification level and years in the destination country. In this paper, we use micro data from the 1996, 2001 and 2006 New Zealand censuses to examine differences between each migrant’s actual years of education and the estimated typical years of education in the narrowly defined occupation in which they work. We find that migrants living in New Zealand for less than 5 years are on average overeducated, while earlier migrants are on average undereducated. However, once accounting for heterogeneity, we find that both overeducated and undereducated migrants become, with increasing years of residence in New Zealand, more similar to comparable native born. Convergence from overeducation is stronger than from undereducation.
    Keywords: immigration, occupation, skill transferability, job-worker mismatch, discrimination, New Zealand
    JEL: F22 J21 J61
    Date: 2010–09
  8. By: Aleksynska, Mariya (CEPII, Paris); Algan, Yann (Sciences Po, Paris)
    Abstract: This paper documents assimilation of immigrants in European destinations along cultural, civic, and economic dimensions, distinguishing by immigrants' generation, duration of stay, and origin. Based on the European Social Survey, it suggests that assimilation may have multiple facets, and take place at different speed depending on the outcome in question. While assimilation along some economic and cultural outcomes may be correlated, such correlations are not systematic, and imply that progress on some dimensions may compensate the lack of progress on other dimensions; and also that a big discrepancy in one dimension is not necessarily a handicap, or an impediment, for assimilation on other grounds. Correlation of immigrants' outcomes and specific policies aimed at immigrants' integration are rather disparate, raising further questions regarding both their effectiveness and differentiated effect on various aspects of life.
    Keywords: assimilation, integration, migration policies, Europe
    JEL: J1 F22 Z13
    Date: 2010–09
  9. By: Kim, Anna Myunghee (IZA)
    Abstract: This paper examines an atypical south-north labour migration that emerged in the post-socialist international migration system: China-to-South Korea ethnic labour migration. Over the past decade, South Korea has experienced an unprecedented increase in the arrival of foreign labour. The majority of workers come from the People's Republic of China. Based on a contextual multivariate analysis of primary survey data on 525 predominantly undocumented Korean Chinese labour migrants in Seoul, this study reveals the underexplored economic dimension of ethnic migration in Northeast Asia. Empirical findings on this source of migrant labour in South Korea demonstrate that the China-to-South Korea ethnic population movement is an important yet an unknown dimension of the post-socialist global migration regime that is marked by the New Economics of international labour migration. The study suggests that ethnic migration from a socialist transition economy to a capital-rich economy linked through ancestral connections must be reconsidered in the context of the changing global migration and demographic landscapes, rather than the ethno-nationally romanticised view of the return of diaspora.
    Keywords: ethnic labour migration, post-socialist global migration regime, new economics of international labour migration
    JEL: J6
    Date: 2010–09
  10. By: Winters, John V
    Abstract: Researchers have consistently shown that the stock of human capital in an area, measured as the share of the adult population with a college degree, is a strong predictor of future population growth. This paper examines this relationship for U.S. non-metropolitan counties and posits that student migration for higher education may play an important role. Students often move to an area for college and then stay in the area after their education is complete, causing the area’s educated population to grow. Empirical evidence suggests that student migration explains nearly all of the greater in-migration to highly educated non-metropolitan counties. Implications for non-metropolitan brain drain are discussed.
    Keywords: population growth; migration; human capital; non-metropolitan counties; college
    JEL: R11 R23
    Date: 2010–10–01
  11. By: Ayako Kondo; Dongshu Ou
    Abstract: This paper investigates the occupational attainment and job mobility of permanent rural-to-urban migrants and compares them with migrants who were born with an urban hukou. Using data from the 2003 China General Social Survey, we examine how much of the gaps in occupational-prestige scores between rural- and urban-born migrants can be explained by differences in observable characteristics up to the time of migration. We find that, with controls for these characteristics, the difference in occupational attainment between rural and urban migrants becomes statistically insignificant or even positive for some subgroups. In contrast, our analysis of job mobility reveals that rural migrants are generally more mobile and also more likely to move to better jobs by changing work units, whereas urban migrants are more likely to be promoted within a work unit.
    Date: 2010–09
  12. By: Borodak, Daniela (Groupe ESC-Clermont); Piracha, Matloob (University of Kent)
    Abstract: This paper analyses the occupational choice of return migrants. Using the CBSAXA data on different aspects of migration in Moldova, we find that those who stayed illegally in the host country tend to go in wage employment on return to the home country. We also show that relatively better educated tend not be in formal employment, i.e., appear not to participate in the labour market whereas those with relatively lower skills or who obtained worse than expected outcome in the host country are more likely to be wage employed in the home country on return. We discuss intuition of these paradoxical results in the paper.
    Keywords: sample selection, return migration, occupational choice, Moldova
    JEL: C35 F22 J24
    Date: 2010–09
  13. By: Carlos Gradín (Universidade de Vigo)
    Abstract: In this paper, we use a propensity score-based methodology to analyze the role of demographic and human capital characteristics of minorities in the U.S. in explaining their high occupational segregation with respect to whites. Thus, we measure conditional segregation based on an estimated counterfactual distribution in which minorities are given the relevant characteristics of whites. Our results show that the different levels of attained education by ethnicity and race explain a substantial share of occupational segregation of non-whites in the U.S., while English skills or immigration status are especially relevant for explaining segregation among Hispanics and Asians.
    Keywords: conditional occupational segregation, race and ethnicity, United States.
    JEL: D63 J15 J16 J71 J82
    Date: 2010
  14. By: Adams, Richard H., Jr.; Cuecuecha, Alfredo
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the impact of international remittances on poverty and household consumption and investment using panel data (2000 and 2007) from the Indonesian Family Life Survey. Three key findings emerge. First, using an instrumental variables approach to control for selection and endogeneity, it finds that international remittances have a large statistical effect on reducing poverty in Indonesia. Second, households receiving remittances in 2007 spent more at the margin on one key consumption good -- food -- compared with what they would have spent on this good without the receipt of remittances. Third, households receiving remittances in 2007 spent less at the margin on one important investment good -- housing -- compared with what they would have spent on this good without the receipt of remittances. Households receiving international remittances in Indonesia are poorer than other types of households, and thus they tend to spend their remittances at the margin on consumption rather than investment goods.
    Keywords: Population Policies,Debt Markets,Remittances,Small Area Estimation Poverty Mapping,Rural Poverty Reduction
    Date: 2010–09–01
  15. By: Benedictis, Geovana; Calfat, Germán; Jara, Karina
    Abstract: We analyse the links between remittances and child education in Ecuador with special emphasis on the influences in supply conditions at the regional level. Our results point out to the favourable role of remittances on education, suggesting at the same time, the importance of an efficient basic infrastructure in the educational system, as a key element in fostering positive outcomes. The positive effect of remittances on child education is better understood within the context of public policies designed to improve and equalize educational supply conditions among the population.
    Date: 2010–05
  16. By: Mauro Augusto dos Santos (Univale); Alisson Flávio Barbieri (Cedeplar-UFMG); José Alberto Magno de Carvalho (Cedeplar-UFMG); Carla Jorge Machado (Cedeplar-UFMG)
    Abstract: This paper presents some of the main theories on migration, which are subdivided into microlevel theories and macro-level theories. As a conclusion, it followed that no theory in itself is able to cover all distinct aspects of a complex phenomenon such as migration. The combination of theoretical approaches is seen as the most efficient way to analyze the migration.
    Keywords: migration, migration theories, macro-level theories, micro-level theories
    JEL: Q56
    Date: 2010–09

This nep-mig issue is ©2010 by Yuji Tamura. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.