nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2011‒04‒30
thirteen papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
Australian National University

  1. How important is cultural background for the level of intergenerational mobility? By Schnitzlein, Daniel D.
  2. Labor Mobility, Social Network Effects, and Innovative Activity By Kaiser, Ulrich; Kongsted, Hans Christian; Rønde, Thomas
  3. Network Effects on Migrants' Remittances By Aparicio Fenoll, Ainhoa
  4. Motives and Giving Norms Behind Remittances: the Case of Filipino Overseas Workers and their Recipient Households By Michael M. Alba; Jessaine Soraya C. Sugui
  5. The Impact of Worker Effort on Public Sentiment Towards Temporary Migrants By Epstein, Gil S.; Venturini, Alessandra
  6. Heterogeneity in Schooling Rates of Return By Henderson, Daniel J.; Polachek, Solomon; Wang, Le
  7. Return migration in Italy: what do we know? By Biondo, Alessio E.; Monteleone, Simona
  8. Migration, Social Security, and Economic Growth By Chen, Hung-Ju; Fang, I-Hsiang
  9. Remittances and the prevalence of working poor. By Jean-Louis Combes; Christian Ebeke; Mathilde Maurel; Thierry Yogo
  10. On the Relationship Between Mobility, Population Growth, and Capital Spending in the United States By Marco Bassetto; Leslie McGranahan
  11. Does immigration cause crime? Evidence from Spain By César Alonso-Borrego; Nuno Garoupa; Pablo Vázquez
  12. China's Latent Human Capital Investment: Achieving Milestones and Competing for the Top By Constant, Amelie F.; Tien, Bienvenue; Zimmermann, Klaus F.; Meng, Jingzhou
  13. A simple theory of the optimal number of immigrants By Chi-Chur Chao; Bharat R. Hazari; Jean-Pierre Laffargue

  1. By: Schnitzlein, Daniel D.
    Abstract: Using results on brother correlations of different groups of second generation immigrants based on administrative data from Denmark, this note analyzes the role of cultural background in the determination of the level of intergenerational mobility. The estimated correlations indicate that cultural background is not an important factor for the level of intergenerational mobility. --
    Keywords: Intergenerational mobility,Sibling correlations
    JEL: J62
    Date: 2011
  2. By: Kaiser, Ulrich (University of Zurich); Kongsted, Hans Christian (University of Copenhagen); Rønde, Thomas (Copenhagen Business School)
    Abstract: We study the mapping between labor mobility and industrial innovative activity for the population of R&D active Danish firms observed between 1999 and 2004. Our study documents a positive relationship between the number of workers who join a firm and the firm's innovative activity. This relationship is stronger if workers join from innovative firms. We also find evidence for positive feedback from workers who leave for an innovative firm, presumably because the worker who left stays in contact with their former colleagues. This implies that the positive feedback ("social network effects") that has been found by other studies not only exists but even outweighs the disruption and loss of knowledge occurring to the previous employer from the worker leaving. Summing up the effects of joining and leaving workers, we find ample evidence for mobility to be associated with an increase in total innovative activity of the new and the old employer.
    Keywords: labor mobility, innovation, social network
    JEL: O33 O34 C23
    Date: 2011–04
  3. By: Aparicio Fenoll, Ainhoa (Universitat Pompeu Fabra)
    Abstract: This paper explores the existence of network effects in migrants’ remittance behavior. In this study, networks are defined as groups of immigrants from the same country that live in the same locality. Using the National Immigrant Survey, a unique database for Spain, immigrants are found to be more likely to remit and to remit more money if they belong to high remitting country groups. This finding sheds new light on the determinants of the decision to remit, as well as on the scope of immigrant networks.
    Keywords: immigrant networks, remittances, Spain
    JEL: J61 F22 O15 A14 E21
    Date: 2011–04
  4. By: Michael M. Alba; Jessaine Soraya C. Sugui
    Abstract: The literature has focused on motives to explain remittance behavior. But as non-anonymous transfers, remittances are liable to be influenced by giving norms as well. We formulate an empirical specification that takes account of remittance motives involving worker-household pairs. We find that altruism dominates the exchange motive among overseas workers who are likely to be the primary breadwinners of their recipient households. We also find that, in the subsample in which overseas workers are likely to be secondary breadwinners, (a) household labor income is an endogenous explanatory variable and (b) the error covariance of the household income and remittance selection equations is positive. A possible reason for (a) is that secondary breadwinners use household income as an imperfect signal of opportunity cost or to detect unobserved effort, i.e., moral hazard, in generating income. As for (b), we surmise that it indicates the presence of incentive-compatible mechanisms against moral hazard. On giving norms, we find that in samples that include overseas workers who are secondary breadwinners, remittance amounts are afflicted with negative selectivity. We present evidence that this is consistent with Filipino giving practices, in which everyone gives but in modest amounts.
    Keywords: Remittances, remittance motives, giving norms
    JEL: F24
    Date: 2011
  5. By: Epstein, Gil S. (Bar-Ilan University); Venturini, Alessandra (University of Turin)
    Abstract: Temporary and circular migration programs have been devised by many destination countries and supported by the European Commission as a policy to reduce welfare and social costs of immigration in destination countries. In this paper we present an additional reason for proposing temporary migration policies based on the characteristics of the foreign labor-effort supply. The level of effort exerted by migrants, which decreases over their duration in the host country, positively affects production, real wages and capital owners' profits. We show that the acceptance of job offers by migrants result in the displacement in employment of national workers. However it increases the workers' exertion, decreases prices and thus can counter anti-immigrant voter sentiment. Therefore, the favorable sentiment of the capital owners and the local population towards migrants may rise when temporary migration policies are adopted.
    Keywords: migration, exertion of effort, contracted temporary migration
    JEL: J0 H0
    Date: 2011–04
  6. By: Henderson, Daniel J. (Binghamton University, New York); Polachek, Solomon (Binghamton University, New York); Wang, Le (University of New Hampshire)
    Abstract: This paper relaxes the assumption of homogeneous rates of return to schooling by employing nonparametric kernel regression. This approach allows us to examine the differences in rates of return to education both across and within groups. Similar to previous studies we find that on average blacks have higher returns to education than whites, natives have higher returns than immigrants and younger workers have higher returns than older workers. Contrary to previous studies we find that the average gap of the rate of return between white and black workers is larger than previously thought and the gap is smaller between immigrants and natives. We also uncover significant heterogeneity, the extent of which differs both across and within groups. The estimated densities of returns vary across groups and time periods and are often skewed. For example, during the period 1950-1990, at least 5% of whites have negative returns. Finally, we uncover the characteristics common amongst those with the smallest and largest returns to education. For example, we find that immigrants, aged 50-59, are most likely to have rates of return in the bottom 5% of the population.
    Keywords: Mincer regressions, nonparametric, rate of return to education
    JEL: C14 J24
    Date: 2011–04
  7. By: Biondo, Alessio E. (University of Catania); Monteleone, Simona (University of Naples “Parthenope”)
    Abstract: Return migration is the positive counterpart of brain drain. Human capital accumulation increases in a country if skilled agents go back home after a period spent working abroad. Effects of brain drain in Italy could be negative as highly skilled migrants decide not to come back to their native country. Our simple model shows that if preference for home consumption is balanced by career opportunities and life-style conditions, agents leave Italy and prefer to remain abroad. Data support and policy implications are provided.
    Keywords: Return migration; brain drain.
    JEL: F22 J24
    Date: 2010–04–01
  8. By: Chen, Hung-Ju; Fang, I-Hsiang
    Abstract: This paper studies the effect of population aging on economic performance in an overlapping-generations model with international migration. Fertility is endogenized so that immigrants and natives can have different fertility rates. Fertility is an important determinant to the tax burden of social security since it affects the quantity and quality of future tax payers. We find that introducing immigrants into the economy can reduce the tax burden of social security. If life expectancy (or the replacement ratio) is high enough, the growth rate of GDP per worker for an economy with international migration will be higher than for a closed economy. Regarding migration policies, our numerical results indicate that economic growth rate of GDP per worker will first decrease then increase as the flow of immigrants increases. Increasing the quality of immigrants will enhance economic growth.
    Keywords: Economic growth; Fertility; Migration; Social security.
    JEL: F22 H55 O15
    Date: 2011
  9. By: Jean-Louis Combes (CERDI - Université d'Auvergne); Christian Ebeke (CERDI - UNiversité d'Auvergne); Mathilde Maurel (Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne); Thierry Yogo (FSEG, CEREG - Université de Yaoundé II-Soa)
    Abstract: This paper focuses on the relationships between remittances and the share of individuals working for less than 2$ US per day. It is based on an original panel dataset containing information related to remittances in about 80 developing countries and to the number of workers being paid less than 2 dollars per day as well. Even after factoring in the endogeneity of remittance inflows the results suggest that remittances lead to a decrease in the prevalence of working poor in receiving economies. This effect is stronger in a contex of high macroeconomic volatility but is mitigated by the unpredictability of remittances : remittances are more effective to decreasing the share of working poor when they are easily predictable. Moreover, domestic finance and remittances appear as substitutes : remittances are less efficient in reducing the prevalence of working poor whenever finance is available.
    Keywords: Working poor, remittances, shocks, financial development.
    JEL: F22 F43 O16
    Date: 2011–04
  10. By: Marco Bassetto; Leslie McGranahan
    Abstract: In this paper, we investigate the relationship between public capital spending and population dynamics at the state level. Empirically, we document two robust facts. First, states with faster population growth do not spend more (per capita) to accommodate the needs of their growing population. Second, states whose population is more likely to leave do tend to spend more per capita than states with low gross emigration rates. To interpret these facts, we introduce an explicit, quantitative political-economy model of government spending determination, where mobility and population growth generate departures from Ricardian equivalence by shifting some of the costs and benefits of public projects to future residents. The magnitude of the empirical response of capital spending to mobility is at the upper end of what can be explained by the theory with a plausible calibration. In the model, more mobile voters favor more spending because the maturity of states' debt is very long term and costs are shifted into the future more than benefits.
    JEL: E62 H41 H71
    Date: 2011–04
  11. By: César Alonso-Borrego; Nuno Garoupa; Pablo Vázquez
    Abstract: The relationship between crime and immigration has been a matter of controversy in the US and around the world. This paper investigates empirically the case of Spain. From 1999 to 2009, Spain has had a large wave of immigration from different areas of the globe. At the same time, crime rates have increased. However, by comparison with other European countries that have received similar massive immigration waves during the same period, crime rates in Spain have increased less considerably. We show that there is a significant relationship between crime and immigration. Nevertheless, the explanation is found in the specific characteristics of the different immigration groups, particularly in the amount and type of human capital, which is a result largely in tune with previous studies on US immigration and crime.
    Keywords: Immigration, Crime, Spain
    Date: 2011–04
  12. By: Constant, Amelie F. (DIW DC, George Washington University); Tien, Bienvenue (DIW DC); Zimmermann, Klaus F. (IZA and University of Bonn); Meng, Jingzhou (George Washington University)
    Abstract: In this paper we provide an overview of China’s human capital strategy and educational achievements over the last two decades. While every one acknowledges China as an economic superpower, very few are aware of or realize China’s notable achievements in education as well as its internationalization of education. Since 1978, the landmark for the foundation of the Chinese modern higher education system China has made tremendous strides in education both domestically and internationally. While China maintains 10% growth in GDP, albeit with a GDP per capita at the low level of a developing country, it is also producing serious scholars and a tremendous amount of scholarly output; more and more Chinese students seek higher education abroad; and international students find a rising interest in receiving education in China.
    Keywords: China, human capital, brain drain, higher education
    JEL: F22 J24 N35 O15 O24 O53
    Date: 2011–04
  13. By: Chi-Chur Chao (Department of Economics - Chinese University of Hong Kong - chinese university of hong kong); Bharat R. Hazari (Department of Economics and Finance - City University of Hong Kong - City University of Hong Kong); Jean-Pierre Laffargue (CEPREMAP - Centre pour la recherche économique et ses applications - CEPREMAP, PSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - CNRS : UMR8545 - Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) - Ecole des Ponts ParisTech - Ecole Normale Supérieure de Paris - ENS Paris, EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris, Université Panthéon Sorbonne - Paris 1 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - Paris I)
    Abstract: This paper develops a simple model to explain two stylised facts about immigration. First, some countries have a low ratio of migrants in their population, while other wealthy countries have a high number of migrants. In fact such migrants are of the same order of magnitude as their domestic workforce. Secondly, migrants are often segregated in jobs. The domestic residents do not wish to be employed in these jobs due to their unattractive working conditions and payments. The model assumes that domestic residents are all identical in terms of their skills and wealth and furthermore that native and foreign workers have the same skills. However, foreign migrants cannot be excluded from the use of public services, the quality of which decreases due to congestion created or enhanced by migrants. On the basis of our model we show that the stylised facts are consistent with an optimal immigration policy, defined by domestic residents who have neither altruistic feelings nor ethnic prejudice toward foreign migrants.
    Keywords: congestion ; immigration ; public good ; segregation
    Date: 2011–04–18

This nep-mig issue is ©2011 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.
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