nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2013‒05‒22
seventeen papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
Australian National University

  1. Unique in the Crowd: The privacy bounds of human mobility. By de Montjoye, Yves-Alexandre
  2. Eliciting Illegal migration rates through list randomization By David McKenzie; Melissa Siegel
  3. Labor Market Laws and Intra-European Migration: The Role of the State in Shaping Destination Choices By John Palmer; Mariola Pytlikova
  4. The impact of MENA-to-EU migration in the context of demographic change. By Docquier, Frédéric
  5. The effects of unemployment benefits on migration in lagging regions By Jordi Jofre-Monseny (Universitat de Barcelona & Institut dEconomia de Barcelona (IEB))
  6. Does Bilateral Trust Affect International Movement of Goods and Labor? By Spring, Eva; Grossmann, Volker
  7. Globalization, Brain Drain, and Development. By Docquier, Frédéric
  8. Are skilled women more migratory than skilled men ?. By Docquier, Frédéric
  9. Modelling Migration and Regional Labour Markets: An Application of the New Economic Geography Model RHOMOLO By Andries Brandsma; d’Artis Kancs; Damiaan Persyn
  10. So Goes the Nation? A preliminary report on how immigration is reshaping the identities of workers in California By Voss, Kim; Silva, Fabiana
  11. The Impact of Financial Literacy Training for Migrants at Destination By John Gibson; David McKenzie; Bilal Zia
  12. Gaining from Migration : Trends and Policy Lessons in the Greater Mekong Sub-region By World Bank
  13. Do Minimum Wage Laws Affect People Who Are Not Covered? Evidence from Documented and Undocumented, Hourly and Piece Rate Workers in U.S. Agriculture By Anita Alves Pena
  14. Skills, migration, and industrial structure in a dual economy By Emmanuel S. de Dios
  15. Poverty reduction during the rural-urban transformation : the role of the missing middle By Christiaensen, Luc; Todo, Yasuyuki
  16. Migration, Taxation, and Inequality By Blanca Moreno-Dodson; Sanket Mohapatra; Dilip Ratha
  17. The Financial Crisis, Oil Price Hike, the Arab Spring and Foreign Demand for Filipino Workers By Edita A. Tan

  1. By: de Montjoye, Yves-Alexandre
    Abstract: We study fifteen months of human mobility data for one and a half million individuals and find that human mobility traces are highly unique. In fact, in a dataset where the location of an individual is specified hourly, and with a spatial resolution equal to that given by the carrier's antennas, four spatio-temporal points are enough to uniquely identify 95% of the individuals. We coarsen the data spatially and temporally to find a formula for the uniqueness of human mobility traces given their resolution and the available outside information. This formula shows that the uniqueness of mobility traces decays approximately as the 1/10 power of their resolution. Hence, even coarse datasets provide little anonymity. These findings represent fundamental constraints to an individual's privacy and have important implications for the design of frameworks and institutions dedicated to protect the privacy of individuals.
    Date: 2013
  2. By: David McKenzie (World Bank, BREAD, CEPR, CREAM, and IZA); Melissa Siegel (Maastricht Graduate School of Governance and UNU-MERIT)
    Abstract: Most migration surveys do not ask about the legal status of migrants due to concerns about the sensitivity of this question. List randomization is a technique that has been used in a number of other social science applications to elicit sensitive information. We trial this technique by adding it to surveys conducted in Ethiopia, Mexico, Morocco and the Philippines. We show how, in principal, this can be used to both give an estimate of the overall rate of illegal migration in the population being surveyed, as well as to determine illegal migration rates for subgroups such as more or less educated households. Our results suggest that there is some useful information in this method: we find higher rates of illegal migration in countries where illegal migration is thought to be more prevalent and households who say they have a migrant are more likely to report having an illegal migrant. Nevertheless, some of our other findings also suggest some possible inconsistencies or noise in the conclusions obtained using this method, so we suggest directions for future attempts to implement this approach in migration surveys.
    Keywords: Illegal migration; List Randomization; Item Count Method; Survey Techniques
    JEL: F22 C83 J61 K42
    Date: 2013–04
  3. By: John Palmer (Princeton University); Mariola Pytlikova (Danish Institute of Governmental Research (KORA) and CReAM London)
    Abstract: This article investigates the relationship between migrants' destination choices and the formal labor market access afforded by multiple potential host countries in the context of the EU's eastward enlargement. We use an index of labor market access laws combined with data on migration from new EU member states into the existing states of the EU and EFTA from 2004 through 2010 to test whether (1) migrants are attracted to destinations that give them greater formal labor market access, and (2) migration flows to any given destination are influenced by the labor market policies of competing destinations. Our data support both propositions: Migration between origin/destination pairs was positively associated with the loosening of destination labor market restrictions while negatively associated with the loosening of competing destinations' labor market restrictions. These relationships hold even when economic indicators, social welfare spending, and existing immigrant stocks are modeled. By combining rich EU data with a unique approach to evaluating competing legal regimes, the analysis helps us better understand how law shapes migration in a multi-destination world.
    Date: 2013–05
  4. By: Docquier, Frédéric
    Abstract: We analyze the consequences of increasing MENA-to-EU migration on both sending and receiving regions. Using a general equilibrium model, we find that increasing MENA-to-EU migration generates significant changes in EU15 tax rates and income per capita. Compared to a non-selective immigration shock, selecting immigrants leads to a moderate reduction in tax rates, but to a greater impact on income per capita in the EU15. Emigration, especially if high-skilled, has a detrimental impact on MENA tax rates. Finally, the negative effects in MENA are mitigated if the brain drain leads to side-effects or is accompanied by increased education attainment at origin.
    Date: 2012
  5. By: Jordi Jofre-Monseny (Universitat de Barcelona & Institut dEconomia de Barcelona (IEB)) (Universitat de Barcelona)
    Keywords: place-based policy, unemployment protection, migration, lagging regions, mobility
    JEL: J6 R23 H73
    Date: 2013
  6. By: Spring, Eva; Grossmann, Volker
    Abstract: Trust in the citizens of a potential partner country may affect the decision to trade with or to migrate to a foreign country. This paper employs panel data to examine the causal impact of such bilateral trust on international trade and migration patterns. We apply instrumental variables (IV) approaches that capture the exogenous variance of bilateral trust separately with eight indicators of genetic ("somatic") distance between country-pairs. These indicators work equally well at the first stage. However, second-stage results very much depend on the exact measure employed as instrument. Overall, we find little evidence that bilateral trust affects international movements of goods and labor. More generally, we highlight the potential fragility of IV estimations even when the instruments seem plausible on theoretical grounds and when standard statistical tests confirm their validity.
    Keywords: Bilateral trust; International migration; International trade; Instrumental variables; Somatic distance
    JEL: F10 F22 Z10
    Date: 2013–05–02
  7. By: Docquier, Frédéric
    Abstract: This paper reviews four decades of economics research on the brain drain, with a focus on recent contributions and on development issues. We first assess the magnitude, intensity, and determinants of the brain drain, showing that brain drain (or high-skill) migration is becoming a dominant pattern of international migration and a major aspect of globalization. We then use a stylized growth model to analyze the various channels through which a brain drain affects the sending countries and review the evidence on these channels. The recent empirical literature shows that high-skill emigration need not deplete a country’s human capital stock and can generate positive network externalities. Three case studies are also considered: the African medical brain drain, the exodus of European scientists to the United States, and the role of the Indian diaspora in the development of India’s information technology sector. We conclude with a discussion of the implications of the analysis for education, immigration, and international taxation policies in a global context.
    Date: 2012
  8. By: Docquier, Frédéric
    Abstract: This paper empirically studies emigration patterns of skilled males and females. In the most relevant model accounting for interdependencies between women and men’s decisions, we derive the gendered responses to traditional push factors. Females and males do not respond with the same intensity to the traditional determinants of labor mobility and gender-specific characteristics of the population at origin. In addition, female willingness to follow their spouse is more pronounced with respect to the male one, other things being equal. Once such interdependencies are accounted for, our analysis reveals that skilled women are not more internationally migratory than skilled men. We thus reject the existence of a genetic or social gender gap in international skilled migration.
    Date: 2012
  9. By: Andries Brandsma (European Commission – JRC - IPTS); d’Artis Kancs (European Commission – JRC - IPTS); Damiaan Persyn (European Commission – JRC - IPTS)
    Abstract: The present paper describes the modelling approach of regional labour markets taken in the newly developed dynamic spatial general equilibrium model RHOMOLO, where the labour market equilibrium is determined by ?rms’ labour demand, a wage-curve with unemployment, and inter-regional labour migration. The RHOMOLO model is parameterised by estimating the key structural parameters econometrically. In order to illustrate the potential of the proposed dynamic spatial general equilibrium approach to inter-regionally integrated labour markets, we carry out simulations showing the e?ects of a reduction in ransportation cost, and assess the impact on regional labour markets. Our results con?rm that wages and unemployment are by far the most important channels of adjustment to macro-economic and policy shocks in the EU. In contrast, labour migration plays a secondary role in labour market adjustments in the EU. Our results also suggest that the relationship between market access, labour demand and labour supply is non-linear and spatially inter-dependent, which underlines the importance of the proposed dynamic spatial general equilibrium approach.
    Keywords: Dynamic spatial general equilibrium model, labour, migration, unemployment, wage, RHOMOLO, DSGE, new economic geography.
    JEL: C68 D58 F22 J20 J61 J64 O15
    Date: 2013–03
  10. By: Voss, Kim; Silva, Fabiana
    Keywords: Sociology, Immigration, worker identity
    Date: 2013–05–13
  11. By: John Gibson; David McKenzie; Bilal Zia
    Keywords: Education - Education For All Finance and Financial Sector Development - Financial Literacy Access and Equity in Basic Education Macroeconomics and Economic Growth - Remittances Education - Primary Education
    Date: 2012–05
  12. By: World Bank
    Keywords: Health, Nutrition and Population - Population Policies Health Monitoring and Evaluation Banks and Banking Reform Human Migrations and Resettlements Social Development - Voluntary and Involuntary Resettlement Communities and Human Settlements Finance and Financial Sector Development Health Nutrition and Population
    Date: 2012
  13. By: Anita Alves Pena (Colorado State University)
    Abstract: While a stated goal of minimum wage increases is to benefit low-income workers, some employers are not obligated to provide at least minimum wages to all employees. U.S. farm employers comprise one of these groups. Employees of large farms and H2-A workers (temporary nonimmigrant workers lawfully admitted to perform temporary or seasonal agricultural services) are protected by minimum wage legislation, while other migrant workers (especially those who are paid piece rate) are exempt. Furthermore, U.S. agriculture is characterized by a large percentage of illegal migrants, and workers who are illegal may or may not receive wages above minimum levels. This paper presents a case study, drawing from agriculture, that examines if and how minimum wage laws affect uncovered workers. Analysis examines wages and hours worked as functions of federal and state minimum wages using data from a nationally and regionally representative survey of employed farm workers. Results suggest wage increases for both covered and uncovered workers, greatest gains to those who are formally covered, and gains not being at the expense of hours worked.
    Keywords: minimum wage exemptions, poverty, agriculture
    JEL: I32 J33 Q12
    Date: 2013–04
  14. By: Emmanuel S. de Dios (School of Economics, University of the Philippines Diliman)
    Abstract: A comparative-static model describes the decline of manufacturing in the face of rising overseas employment through a mechanism other than the Dutch Disease. Instead it is competition for skilled labour and the relative ease in producing skills that affect the size of the manufacturing sector, including its employment of unskilled labour.
    Keywords: deindustrialisation, manufacturing and services sector, migration, skills
    JEL: O14 O15
    Date: 2013–03
  15. By: Christiaensen, Luc; Todo, Yasuyuki
    Abstract: As countries develop, they restructure away from agriculture and urbanize. But structural transformation and urbanization patterns differ substantially, with some countries fostering migration out of agriculture into rural off farm activities and secondary towns, and others undergoing rapid agglomeration in mega cities. Using cross-country panel data for developing countries spanning 1980-2004, the analysis in this paper finds that migration out of agriculture into the missing middle (the rural nonfarm economy and secondary towns) yields more inclusive growth patterns and faster poverty reduction than agglomeration in mega cities. This suggests that patterns of urbanization deserve much more attention when striving for faster poverty reduction.
    Keywords: Rural Poverty Reduction,Achieving Shared Growth,Regional Economic Development,ICT Applications
    Date: 2013–05–01
  16. By: Blanca Moreno-Dodson; Sanket Mohapatra; Dilip Ratha
    Keywords: Taxation and Subsidies Finance and Financial Sector Development - Debt Markets Banks and Banking Reform Private Sector Development - Emerging Markets Macroeconomics and Economic Growth - Remittances
    Date: 2012–05
  17. By: Edita A. Tan (School of Economics, University of the Philippines Diliman)
    Abstract: The paper inquires into the impact of contemporary major world events – the recession in the United States and Western Europe, the oil price hike, and the Arab Spring – on the flow of overseas Filipino workers or OFWs and their remittances. The paper finds that the recession in the West has not spread worldwide for its share in world trade has declined significantly since the 1980s. The oil exporting countries gained from the oil price hike and there are now many more economies that have achieved appreciable growth which they have been able to sustain up to the present, e.g. the Asian tigers, BRICs, Botswana. On the other hand, Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and Syria are minor employers of Filipino workers. Expectedly, the varied economic performance of the world economies has had differential impact on demand for migrant workers. The OFWs have found employment in varied occupations in varied destinations with the large majority in the Middle East and East Asia which have not been negatively affected by the Western recession. Many are also in service occupations that did not suffer as much decline in demand as in other occupations. The paper provides some empirical support to these findings.
    Date: 2012–08

This nep-mig issue is ©2013 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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