nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2013‒06‒16
eleven papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
Australian National University

  2. Measuring the International Mobility of Inventors: A New Database By Ernest Miguelez; Carsten Fink
  3. Labor Market Laws and Intra-European Migration: The Role of the State in Shaping Destination Choices By John Palmer; Mariola Pytlikova
  4. Migrant network and immigrants’ occupational mismatch By Isabelle Chort
  5. Networks and Selection in International Migration to Spain By Nina Neubecker; Marcel Smolka; Anne Steinbacher
  6. The Slowdown in the Economic Assimilation of Immigrants: Aging and Cohort Effects Revisited Again By George J. Borjas
  7. The Composition of Wage Differentials between Migrants and Natives By Panagiotis Nanos; Christian Schluter
  8. Selection and Economic Gains in the Great Migration of African Americans: New Evidence from Linked Census Data By William J. Collins; Marianne H. Wanamaker
  9. Skilled Labor Flows: Lessons from the European Union By Martin Kahanec
  10. Cultural influences on the fertility behaviour of first- and second-generation immigrants in Germany By Stichnoth, Holger; Yeter, Mustafa
  11. International Labor Movements and Trade (Japanese) By SATO Hitoshi

  1. By: Liliana D. Sousa
    Abstract: This study uses linked employer-household data to measure the impact of immigrant social networks, as identified via neighborhood and workplace affiliation, on immigrant earnings. Though ethnic enclaves can provide economic opportunities through job creation and job matching, they can also stifle the assimilation process by limiting interactions between enclave members and non-members. I find that higher residential and workplace ethnic clustering among immigrants is consistently correlated with lower earnings. For immigrants with a high school education or less, these correlations are primarily due to negative self-selection. On the other hand, self-selection fails to explain the lower earnings associated with higher ethnic clustering for immigrants with post-secondary schooling. The evidence suggests that co-ethnic clustering has no discernible effect on the earnings of immigrants with lower education, but may be leading to human capital traps for immigrants who have more than a high school education.
    Keywords: migration, ethnic enclaves, neighborhood effects, labor market assimilation
    JEL: J15 J24 J31 J61
    Date: 2013–06
  2. By: Ernest Miguelez (World Intellectual Property Organization, Economics and Statistics Division, Geneva, Switzerland); Carsten Fink (World Intellectual Property Organization, Economics and Statistics Division, Geneva, Switzerland)
    Abstract: This paper has two objectives. First, it describes a new database mapping migratory patterns of inventors, extracted from information included in patent applications filed under the Patent Cooperation Treaty. We explain in detail the information contained in the database and discuss the usefulness and reliability of the underlying data. Second, the paper provides a descriptive overview of inventor migration patterns, based on the information contained in the newly constructed database. Among the largest receiving countries, we find that the United States exhibits by far the highest inventor immigration rate, followed by Australia and Canada. European countries lag behind in attracting inventive talent; in addition, France, Germany, and the UK see more inventors emigrating than immigrating. In relation to the number of home country inventors, Central American, Caribbean and African economies show the largest inventor brain drain.
    Keywords: brain drain, skilled international migration, inventors, PCT patents
    JEL: F22 J61 O3 O15
    Date: 2013–05
  3. By: John Palmer; Mariola Pytlikova
    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 multidestination world.
    Keywords: International migration, labor market access laws, EU enlargement
    JEL: J61 F22 O15
    Date: 2013–05–31
  4. By: Isabelle Chort (LEDa, UMR DIAL-Paris-Dauphine)
    Abstract: (english) This paper defines new measures of horizontal and vertical mismatch based on the discrepancies between the skill content of occupations in which individuals have a self-assessed productive advantage and that of their actual job. Based on these definitions, this paper provides the first direct empirical test of the causal impact of networks on mismatch, in the particular case of immigrants. The data used are original survey data collected among 1,200 Senegalese migrants in four host countries. Potential endogeneity issues are dealt with by using migrants' ethnic and religious characteristics to instrument for network help to find a job. Analyses show that migrants who obtained their job through migrant networks have a higher probability of horizontal mismatch. However, they have a lower probability of negative mismatch and thus seem to be protected from a loss in occupational status. _________________________________ (français) Ce papier présente de nouveaux indicateurs d’inadéquation professionnelle verticale et horizontale, définis à partir du décalage entre le niveau de qualifications associé au métier des individus et à leur emploi. Sur la base de ces définitions, ce papier est le premier à tester directement l’impact causal des réseaux sur l’inadéquation professionnelle, dans le cas particulier des immigrants. Les données utilisées sont des données d’enquêtes originales, collectées auprès de 1200 migrants sénégalais dans quatre pays de destination. Je traite les problèmes d’endogénéité potentiels en utilisant les caractéristiques ethniques et religieuses des migrants pour instrumenter le recours à l’aide du réseau pour trouver un emploi. Cette analyse montre que les migrants qui ont obtenu leur emploi par leur réseau de migrants ont une probabilité plus élevée d’inadéquation professionnelle horizontale. En revanche, ils ont une probabilité moindre de déclassement professionnel, ce qui suggère que le réseau joue un rôle protecteur.
    Keywords: Occupational mismatch, networks, immigration, labor market, skill recognition, Déclassement professionnel, immigration, réseau migratoire, marché du travail.
    JEL: J24 J61 J62 F22
    Date: 2013–04
  5. By: Nina Neubecker; Marcel Smolka; Anne Steinbacher
    Abstract: This paper provides new evidence on migrant networks as determinants of the total size (scale) and skill structure of migration, using aggregate data from a recent migration boom to Spain. We draw upon McFadden (1984, 1422-1428) in order to develop and apply a three-level nested multinomial logit migration model. Our model accommodates varying degrees of similarity of destinations located in the same region (or the same country), allowing for a rich structure of substitutability across alternative destinations. We find strong positive network effects on the scale of migration and a strong negative effect on the ratio of high-skilled to low-skilled migrants. Simplifying restrictions on substitutability across destinations are rejected by the data.
    Keywords: international migration, migrant networks, nested multinomial logit model, skill structure of migration, Spain
    JEL: F22 J61
    Date: 2013
  6. By: George J. Borjas
    Abstract: This paper uses data drawn from the 1970-2010 decennial Censuses to examine the evolution of immigrant earnings in the U.S. labor market. The analysis reveals that there are cohort effects not only in the level of earnings, with more recent cohorts generally having relatively lower entry wages, but also in the rate of growth of earnings, with more recent cohorts having a smaller rate of economic assimilation. Immigrants who entered the country before the 1980s typically found that their initial wage disadvantage (relative to natives) narrowed by around 15 percentage points during their first two decades in the United States. In contrast, the immigrants who entered the country after the 1980s have a negligible rate of wage convergence. Part of the slowdown in wage convergence reflects a measurable reduction in the actual rate of human capital accumulation. In particular, there has been a concurrent decline in the rate at which the newer immigrant cohorts are “picking up” English language skills. The study isolates one factor that explains part of these trends: The rate of increase in English language proficiency is significantly slower for larger national origin groups. The growth in the size of these groups accounts for about a quarter of the decline in the rates of human capital acquisition and economic assimilation.
    JEL: J24 J60 J61
    Date: 2013–06
  7. By: Panagiotis Nanos; Christian Schluter
    Abstract: We consider the role of unobservables, such as differences in search frictions, reservation wages, and productivities for the explanation of wage differentials between migrants and natives. We disentangle these by estimating an empirical general equilibrium search model with on-the-job search due to Bontemps, Robin, and van den Berg (1999) on segments of the labour market defined by occupation, age, and nationality using a large scale German administrative dataset. The native-migrant wage differential is then decomposed into several parts, and we focus especially on the component that we label "migrant effect", being the difference in wage offers between natives and migrants in the same occupation-age segment in firms of the same productivity. Counterfactual decompositions of wage differentials allow us to identify and quantify their drivers, thus explaining within a common framework what is often labelled the unexplained wage gap.
    Date: 2013–06
  8. By: William J. Collins; Marianne H. Wanamaker
    Abstract: The onset of World War I spurred the “Great Migration” of African Americans from the U.S. South, arguably the most important internal migration in U.S. history. We create a new panel dataset of more than 5,000 men matched from the 1910 to 1930 census manuscripts to address three interconnected questions: To what extent was there selection into migration? How large were the migrants’ gains? Did migration narrow the racial gap in economic status? We find evidence of positive selection, but the migrants’ gains were large. A substantial amount of black-white convergence in this period is attributable to migration.
    JEL: J15 J61 N32 N92 R23
    Date: 2013–06
  9. By: Martin Kahanec
    Keywords: migration, migration policy, skilled migration, European Union, European Union Neighborhood, ASEAN
    Date: 2013–05–28
  10. By: Stichnoth, Holger; Yeter, Mustafa
    Abstract: Based on a 1% sample of the German population, we study how fertility rates in the country of origin-a proxy for cultural imprint-influence the fertility outcomes of first- and second-generation female immigrants. We use both total fertility rates in the year of migration and a new measure of completed cohort fertility rates in the countries of origin as well as direct survey measures of fertility norms. Our large data set allows us to focus on a relatively narrow range for age at migration and to estimate models that rely on within-country variation only, leading to more credible identification. We find a statistically significant, sizeable and robust effect of country-of-origin fertility rates on fertility outcomes. The effect is strongest for the first generation and becomes weaker, though still statistically significant, for 'generation 1.5' (migrants arriving as children) and the second generation. It is stronger for women with low education and for women who live with a partner from the same country of origin. --
    Keywords: Immigration,fertility,assimilation,intergenerational transmission,Germany
    JEL: J13 J15 J16
    Date: 2013
  11. By: SATO Hitoshi
    Abstract: Lifting barriers to labor mobility across countries is controversial. Although the Japanese government is attempting to increase the number of skilled immigrants while curbing unskilled immigrants, immigration policy has been a contentiously debated issue in Japan from the perspectives of labor scarcity due to low fertility, industry competition, and the current demand for unskilled immigrant workers in Japan. This paper selectively discusses the recent research on international migration, emphasizing interactions with international trade and offshoring. Recent studies indicate that, given large productivity disparities across countries, liberalizing international migration yields much greater gains than pursuing further liberalization in trade or international capital transactions. Examining international labor movements and trade within unified frameworks reveals new insights into the consequences of international migration from the perspectives of terms of trade, scale economy, and task specialization. As for economic growth, empirical studies suggest that skilled immigrants will accelerate research and development (R&D), which may lead to increases in economic growth. However, it is still uncertain whether a higher economic growth rate owing to immigration will improve per capita welfare. Further empirical analyses are needed to gauge the empirical relevance on theoretical implications about international migration under free trade. Another promising research area is the political economy of international migration in which trade policy and migration policy are simultaneously determined.
    Date: 2013–06

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