nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2014‒12‒03
ten papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
La Trobe University

  1. Immigration, Cultural Distance and Natives' Attitudes Towards Immigrants: Evidence from Swiss Voting Results By Brunner, Beatrice; Kuhn, Andreas
  2. Hispanic Immigrants' Opinions towards Immigration and Immigration Policy Reform By Melo, Grace; Colson, Gregory J.; Ramirez, Octavio A.
  3. Immigrants' 'Ability' and Welfare as a Function of Cultural Diversity: Effect of Cultural Capital at Individual and Local Level By Tubadji, Annie; Gheasi, Masood; Nijkamp, Peter
  4. Global competition for attracting talents and the world economy By Frédéric DOCQUIER; Joël MACHADO
  5. Fertility Responses of High-Skilled Native Women to Immigrant Inflows By Furtado, Delia
  6. Emigration, Remittances and Corruption Experience of Those Staying Behind By Ivlevs, Artjoms; King, Roswitha M.
  7. Social Capital and Health: Evidence That Ancestral Trust Promotes Health among Children of Immigrants By Ljunge, Martin
  8. Village political economy, land tenure insecurity, and the rural to urban migration decision : evidence from China By Giles, John; Mu, Ren
  9. The second dividend of studying abroad: The impact of international student mobility on academic performance By Meya, Johannes; Suntheim, Katharina
  10. Dietary Assimilation and its effect on health: A Study of International Students By Katare, Bhagyashree

  1. By: Brunner, Beatrice (Zurich University of Applied Sciences (ZHAW)); Kuhn, Andreas (Swiss Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training)
    Abstract: We combine community-level outcomes of 27 votes about immigration issues in Switzerland with census data to estimate the effect of immigration on natives' attitudes towards immigration. We apply an instrumental variable approach to take potentially endogenous locational choices into account, and we categorize immigrants into two groups according to the cultural values and beliefs of their source country to understand how the cultural distance between natives and immigrants affects this relationship. We find that the share of culturally different immigrants is a significant and sizable determinant of anti-immigration votes, while the presence of culturally similar immigrants does not affect natives' voting behavior at all in most specifications. The cultural distance between immigrant and native residents thus appears crucial in explaining the causal effect of immigration on natives' attitudes towards immigration, and we argue that the differential impact is mainly driven by natives' concerns about compositional amenities. We finally show that the elasticity of the share of right-wing votes in favor of the Swiss People's Party is much more elastic with respect to the share of culturally different immigrants than natives' attitudes themselves, suggesting that the party has disproportionally gained from changes in attitudes caused by immigrant inflows.
    Keywords: instrumental variable, endogenous residential choice, cultural distance, cultural values and beliefs, voting behavior, attitudes towards immigration, immigration, rightwing votes
    JEL: D72 F22 J15 J61 R23
    Date: 2014–08
  2. By: Melo, Grace; Colson, Gregory J.; Ramirez, Octavio A.
    Abstract: Immigration reform is the most polarizing legislative issues in the US. Surprisingly, despite regular polling evidence of the American public's attitudes towards immigration reform proposals, little evidence has elicited the preferences of the group most affected by any policy changes - legal and illegal Hispanic immigrants. This study presents evidence from a survey and choice experiment of Hispanic immigrants who entered the US illegally on their preferences and willingness to pay for different immigration reform proposals. Policy attributes, which are based on current competing US Senate and House bills, include pathways to legal permanent residence, length of temporary work visas, family visitation rights, and access to medical care. The results quantify the value Hispanic immigrants place on different policy attributes and suggest that longer term work visas are valued on par with legal permanent residence. Furthermore, the ability to legally work in the US is substantially more valued than social services such as medical care and social security benefits.
    Keywords: Illegal immigration, Immigration reform, Hispanic immigrants, Agricultural and Food Policy, Labor and Human Capital,
    Date: 2014
  3. By: Tubadji, Annie (University of Regensburg); Gheasi, Masood (VU University Amsterdam); Nijkamp, Peter (VU University Amsterdam)
    Abstract: This paper presents an operationalization of a mixed Bourdieu–Mincer-type model that seeks to find evidence for individual and local cultural capital effects on human capital 'ability'. We aim to compare these effects for native workers and immigrants (as well as between immigrants themselves) in a locality. The main objective of the paper is twofold: 1) to examine how ethnic background affects immigrants' schooling results; and 2) to explore the link between the wage differential of immigrant young workers entering the labour market in the context of a locally varying cultural milieu. Our study utilises the 2007–2009 data set for higher professional education (termed HBO in Dutch) graduates from Maastricht University. We use a two-stage least squares (2SLS) estimation method to analyse empirically a system of two equations. In the first Bourdieu-type equation, individual cultural capital, together with school type/quality, explains the individual's schooling achievement. Next, this 'schooling achievement' is employed as an explanatory variable in the second Mincer-type equation, which examines wage differential effects. Our Mincer-type equation is next augmented with a control for the local cultural milieu. We find evidence of ethnic segregation with regard to the quality of educational institution to which immigrants have access, which naturally explains part of the wage differential effect. Moreover, we find that local cultural capital determines the size of the wage gap.
    Keywords: immigration, wage differential, cultural capital, local cultural milieu, Mincer equation
    JEL: Z10 O31 O43 R11
    Date: 2014–09
  4. By: Frédéric DOCQUIER (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES) and FNRS); Joël MACHADO (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES))
    Abstract: This paper studies the effect of liberalizing the international mobility of college-educated workers on the world economy. First, we combine data on effective and desired migration to identify the net pool of foreign talents (NPFT) of selected high-income countries. So far, the EU15 has poorly benefited from its NPFT while the US has mobilized a large portion of it. Second, we use a micro-founded model to simulate the effects of skill-selective liberalization shocks. In our benchmark model, a worldwide liberalization induces larger long-run income gains for the EU15 (+8.8 percent) than for the US (+5.9 percent). However, less attractive EU countries such as Austria, Belgium, Germany, Greece, Luxembourg and the Netherlands benefit less than the US. In addition, liberalizing high-skilled migration decreases income per worker by 2.5 percent in developing countries. Overall, it increases efficiency (+6.2 percent in the worldwide average level of income per capita) and inequality (+1.2 percentage points in the Theil inequality index). Much greater effects can be obtained if total factor productivity varies with human capital.
    Keywords: brain drain, human capital, migration, growth,inequality
    JEL: O15 F22 I24
    Date: 2014–11–07
  5. By: Furtado, Delia (University of Connecticut)
    Abstract: While there is debate regarding the magnitude of the impact, immigrant inflows are generally understood to depress wages and increase employment in immigrant-intensive sectors. In light of the over-representation of the foreign-born in the childcare industry, this paper examines whether college-educated native women respond to immigrant-induced lower cost and potentially more convenient childcare options with increased fertility. An analysis of U.S. Census data between 1980 and 2000 suggests that immigrant inflows are indeed associated with increased likelihoods of having a baby, and responses are strongest among women who are most likely to consider childcare costs when making fertility decisions – namely, married women with a graduate degree. Given that women also respond to immigrant inflows by working long hours, the paper ends with an analysis of the types of women who have stronger fertility relative to labor supply responses to immigrant-induced changes in childcare options.
    Keywords: immigration, fertility, child care, labor supply
    JEL: D10 F22 J13 J22 R23
    Date: 2014–10
  6. By: Ivlevs, Artjoms (University of the West of England, Bristol); King, Roswitha M. (Østfold University College)
    Abstract: We examine the effects of emigration and remittances on the corruption experience of migrant household members staying in the countries of origin. We hypothesize that the effects of emigration on corruption can be both positive (via migrant value transfer) and negative (via misuse of monetary remittances). Using Gallup Balkan Monitor survey data in instrumental variable analysis, we find that migrant households are more likely to face bribe situations and be asked for bribes by public officials. At the same time, having relatives abroad reduces the probability of actually paying a bribe. This beneficial effect is offset by receiving monetary remittances.
    Keywords: emigration, corruption, institutions, diaspora externalities, Western Balkans
    JEL: F22 F24 D73
    Date: 2014–10
  7. By: Ljunge, Martin (Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN))
    Abstract: This paper presents evidence that generalized trust promotes health. Children of immigrants in a broad set of European countries with ancestry from across the world are studied. Individuals are examined within country of residence using variation in trust across countries of ancestry. There is a significant positive estimate of ancestral trust in explaining selfassessed health. The finding is robust to accounting for individual, parental, and extensive ancestral country characteristics. Individuals with higher ancestral trust are also less likely to be hampered by health problems in their daily life, providing evidence of trust influencing real life outcomes. Individuals with high trust feel and act healthier, enabling a more productive life.
    Keywords: Trust; Social capital; Self assessed health; Subjective health; Self reported health; Cultural transmission; Children of immigrants
    JEL: D13 D83 I12 Z13
    Date: 2014–11–03
  8. By: Giles, John; Mu, Ren
    Abstract: This paper investigates the impact of land tenure insecurity on the migration decisions of China's rural residents. A simple model first frames the relationship among these variables and the probability that a reallocation of land will occur in the following year. After first demonstrating that a village leader's support for administrative land reallocation carries with it the risk of losing a future election, the paper exploits election-timing and village heterogeneity in lineage group composition and demographic change to identify the effect of land security. In response to an expected land reallocation in the following year, the probability that a rural resident migrates out of the county declines by 2.8 percentage points, which accounts for 17.5 percent of the annual share of village residents, aged 16 to 50, who worked as migrants during the period. This finding underscores the potential importance of secure property rights for facilitating labor market integration and the movement of labor out of agriculture.
    Keywords: Common Property Resource Development,Population Policies,Urban Housing,Political Economy,Municipal Housing and Land
    Date: 2014–11–01
  9. By: Meya, Johannes; Suntheim, Katharina
    Abstract: This paper investigates the effect of studying abroad on students´ success at university. Using an extensive dataset, propensity score matching is applied to account for possible self-selection into international mobility. Our empirical analysis suggests that a temporary study-related visit abroad significantly improves the final university grade, thus granting a second dividend in addition to personal experience. However, it seems that this effect is mainly driven by selective transferring of grades. Moreover, the study shows that a sojourn reduces the probability of finishing studies within the standard time period, suggesting that this dividend comes at a cost.
    Keywords: tertiary education,international student mobility,academic performance,grade point average,propensity score matching
    JEL: I21 J61 J11
    Date: 2014
  10. By: Katare, Bhagyashree
    Abstract: This paper seeks to understand the effect of environment on obesity by studying the effect of acculturation on the health of a foreign population – who experience a relatively low prevalence of obesity – after they have been introduced to different environments, some are characterized by relatively low prevalence and others are characterized by relatively high rates of obesity. Acculturation for the purpose of this study is defined as a voluntary or involuntary adaptation of food habits and culture of the new country. The foreign population is defined to be the group of foreign students who come from various countries to the United States for short term or long-term habitation.
    Keywords: Obesity, Immigrants, Nutrition, Dietary Change, Agricultural and Food Policy, Consumer/Household Economics, Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety, Health Economics and Policy, I12, J15,
    Date: 2014

This nep-mig issue is ©2014 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.