nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2016‒10‒30
twelve papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
La Trobe University

  1. The Role of English Fluency in Migrant Assimilation: Evidence from United States History By Zachary Ward
  2. The role of conflict for optimal climate and immigration policy By Fabien Prieur; Ingmar Schumacher
  3. The migration of professionals within the EU: any barriers left? By Capuano, Stella; Migali, Silvia
  4. The Gain from the Drain - Skill-biased Migration and Global Welfare By Costanza Biavaschi; Michal Burzynski; Benjamin Elsner; Joël Machado
  5. Patterns and Determinants of Immigrants? Sense of Belonging to Canada and Their Source Country By Hou, Feng; Schellenberg, Grant; Berry, John
  6. Brain gain in the age of mass migration By Francesco Giffoni; Matteo Gomellini
  7. Refugee Migration and Electoral Outcomes By Christian Dustman; Kristine Vasiljeva; Anna Piil Damm
  8. Immigrant Category of Admission of the Parents and Outcomes of the Children: How far does the Apple Fall? By Casey Warman; Christopher Worswick
  9. Migration and Cross-Border Financial Flows By Maurice Kugler; Oren Levintal; Hillel Rapoport
  10. Interstate Migration and Employer-to-Employer Transitions in the U.S. New Evidence from Administrative Records Data By Henry Hyatt; Erika McEntarfer; Ken Ueda; Alexandria Zhang
  11. The effect of immigration on convergence dynamics in the US By Licia Ferranna; Margherita Gerolimetto; Stefano Magrini
  12. Migration in the People’s Republic of China By Lu, Ming; Xia, Yiran

  1. By: Zachary Ward
    Abstract: I estimate the premium for speaking English and the rate of language acquisition in the early 20th century US using new linked data on over half a million migrants. Compared with today's migrants, early 20th century migrants arrived with much lower levels of proficiency, yet many acquired language skills rapidly after arrival. Learning to speak English was correlated with a small upgrade in occupational-based earnings (2 to 6%); the premium has at least doubled between 1900 and 2010, revealing that English fluency has become an increasingly large barrier to migration over time.
    Keywords: English fl uency, language, migrant assimilation
    JEL: F22 J24 J61 J62 N31 N32
    Date: 2016–10
  2. By: Fabien Prieur (TSE-R (INRA)); Ingmar Schumacher (IPAG Business School)
    Abstract: In this article we investigate the role that internal and external conflict plays for optimal climate and immigration policy. Reviewing the empirical literature, we put forward five theses regarding the link between climate change, migration, and conflict. Based on these theses, we then develop a theoretical model in which we take the perspective of the North who unilaterally chooses the number of immigrants from a pool of potential migrants that is endogenously determined by the extent of climate change. Accepting these migrants allows increases in local production which not only increases climate change but also gives rise to internal conflicts. In addition, those potential migrants that want to move due to climate change but that are not allowed to immigrate may induce external conflict. While we show that the external and internal conflict play a significant yet decisively different role, it is the co-existence of both conflicts that makes policy making difficult. Considering only one conflict induces significant immigration but no mitigation. Allowing for both types of conflict, then depending on parameters, either a steady state without immigration but with mitigation will be optimal, or a steady state with a larger number of immigrants but less mitigation. Furthermore, we find the possibility of Skiba points, signaling that optimal policy depends on initial conditions, too. During transition we examine the substitutability and complementarity between the mitigation and immigration policy.
    Keywords: climate change, immigration, conflict, mitigation
    JEL: Q54 Q56 F22
    Date: 2016–10
  3. By: Capuano, Stella (Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany]); Migali, Silvia
    Abstract: "Despite the effort at EU level to harmonize the process of recognition of foreign educational qualifications, the European states differ in their propensity to accept high-school and academic certificates obtained in other EU member states. In turn, a country's higher degree of recognition of foreign qualifications might be an attractor of non-native skilled workers. We provide evidence on this issue using new data on the outcome of the recognition process in every EU country. Estimating different panel data gravity models, we find that the migration rate to a given destination country is positively affected by its propensity to recognize foreign educational qualifications." (Author's abstract, IAB-Doku) ((en))
    JEL: F22 J44 C23
    Date: 2016–10–19
  4. By: Costanza Biavaschi (University of Reading); Michal Burzynski (University of Luxembourg); Benjamin Elsner (Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)); Joël Machado (Fonds National de la Recherche, Luxembourg)
    Abstract: High-skilled workers are four times more likely to migrate than low-skilled workers. This skill bias in migration - often called brain drain - has been at the center of a heated debate about the welfare consequences of emigration from developing countries. In this paper, we provide a global perspective on the brain drain by jointly quantifying its impact on the sending and receiving countries. In a calibrated multi-country model, we compare the current world to a counterfactual with the same number of migrants, but those migrants are randomly selected from their country of origin. We find that the skill bias in migration significantly increases welfare in most receiving countries. Moreover, due to a more efficient global allocation of talent, the global welfare effect is positive, albeit some sending countries lose. Overall, our findings suggest that more - not less - high-skilled migration would increase world welfare.
    Keywords: migration, brain drain, global welfare
    JEL: F22 O15 J61
    Date: 2016–10
  5. By: Hou, Feng; Schellenberg, Grant; Berry, John
    Abstract: This study assesses immigrants? acculturation profiles as measured by their sense of belonging to Canada and their source country. It first examines the relative distribution of immigrants who have a strong sense of belonging to both Canada and their source country; a strong sense of belonging to Canada only; a strong sense of belonging to their source country only; and a weak sense of belonging to Canada and their source country. It further examines four sets of determinants of these acculturation profiles, including source-country socioeconomic and cultural characteristics, immigration entry status, post-migration experience, and demographic characteristics.
    Keywords: Ethnic diversity and immigration, Ethnic groups and generations in Canada, Health, Immigrants and non-permanent residents, Integration of newcomers, Mental health and well-being, Visible minorities
    Date: 2016–10–18
  6. By: Francesco Giffoni (University of Rome, La Sapienza); Matteo Gomellini (Bank of Italy)
    Abstract: The relationship between emigration and human capital is a hotly debated issue. Nowadays discussions focus mainly on the so called brain drain, i.e. the reduction in the human capital endowment of a country due to the emigration of more skilled people. Differently, this paper investigates whether and how the Italian emigration of the early twentieth century induced a domestic increase in school attendance rates. Many historical clues suggest that this actually happened in Italy at the turn of the nineteenth century. At least three rationales lie at the heart of such a relationship: first, emigration or its prospects increase the expected return to schooling thus making education more attractive; second, return migration could fuel a rise in school attendance via monetary and non-monetary channels; third, remittances could help in relaxing the budget constraint that prevented people to invest in education. Using a new dataset at the city level and different econometric techniques, we find quantitative support that primary school attendance rates have been positively correlated with (and, arguably, partially caused by) emigration and return migration. We also find that remittances had a positive effect on schooling.
    Keywords: migration, brain gain, schooling
    JEL: F22 N33 O15
    Date: 2015–04
  7. By: Christian Dustman (University College London and CReAM); Kristine Vasiljeva (Kraka); Anna Piil Damm (Aarhus University)
    Abstract: To estimate the causal effect of refugee migration on voting outcomes in parliamentary and municipal elections in Denmark, our study is the first that addresses the key problem of immigrant sorting by exploiting a policy that assigned refugee immigrants to municipalities on a quasi-random basis. We find that – in all but the most urban municipalities - allocation of larger refugee shares between electoral cycles leads to an increase in the vote share not only for parties with an anti-immigration agenda but also for centre-right parties, while the vote share for centre-left parties decreases. However, in the largest and most urban municipalities refugee allocation has – if anything – the opposite effect on vote shares for anti-immigration parties. We demonstrate response heterogeneity according to municipal characteristics, with a more pronounced response in less urban municipalities in which the pre-policy shares of both immigrants and the more affluent is high, and in urban municipalities with high unemployment. At the same time, higher pre-policy crime rates are associated with more support for anti-immigration parties in response to refugee allocation in both urban and non-urban municipalities. We also find some evidence that refugee allocation influences voter turnout. Moreover, it has a large impact on the decision of anti-immigration parties’ choice of where to stand for municipal election.
    Keywords: immigration, political preferences, re-distribution, welfare, random allocation
    JEL: H53 I38
    Date: 2016–10
  8. By: Casey Warman (Department of Economics Dalhousie University); Christopher Worswick (Dalhousie University)
    Abstract: Immigrants in many Western countries have experienced poor economic outcomes. This has led to a lack of integration of child immigrants (the 1.5 generation) and the second generation in some countries. However, in Canada, child immigrants and the second generation have on average integrated very well economically. We examine the importance of Canada's entry classes and determine if there is an additional benefit of the selection under the Economic Classes, and in particular the Skilled Workers Class, in terms of the earnings outcomes of the child immigrants (the 1.5 generation). Using administrative data on landing records matched with subsequent income tax records, we are able to identify the entry class of child immigrants, and then consider their economic outcomes in Canada. We find that the superior outcomes of the parents who entered as Skilled Workers extends to the children in terms of approximately 18 to 24 percent higher earnings than those whose parent entered under the Family Class of admission. In addition, we find that this earnings advantage persists (at 7 to 15 percent) even after we control for the education, language ability and detailed country of origin of the person's parent who had been the Principal Applicant.
    Keywords: Canada, Immigration, Earnings, 1.5 generation, Second generation, Childimmigrants, Integration, Points System, Skilled Workers, Economic Class
    JEL: J15 J13 J31 J61 J62
    Date: 2016–10
  9. By: Maurice Kugler (The Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya - The Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya); Oren Levintal (Bar-Ilan University [Israël]); Hillel Rapoport (CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - UP1 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, PSE - Paris School of Economics)
    Abstract: The gravity model has provided a tractable empirical framework to account for bilateral flows not only of manufactured goods, as in the case of merchandise trade, but also of financial flows. In particular, recent literature has emphasized the role of information costs in preventing larger diversification of financial investments. This paper investigates the role of migration in alleviating information imperfections between home and host countries. We show that the impact of migration on financial flows is strongest where information problems are more acute (that is, for more informational sensitive investments, between culturally more distant countries, and when the source country of migrants is a developing country) and for the type of migrants that are most able to enhance the flow of information on their home country, namely, skilled migrants. We interpret these differential effects as additional evidence pointing to the role of information in generating home-bias and as new evidence of the role of migration in reducing information frictions between countries.
    Keywords: gravity models,information asymmetries,international loans,international financial flows,Migration
    Date: 2015–03
  10. By: Henry Hyatt; Erika McEntarfer; Ken Ueda; Alexandria Zhang
    Abstract: Recent evidence has suggested that interstate migration is in decline in the United States, which might imply that the labor market is becoming more rigid. However, the sharp post-2000 decline in the non-imputed interstate migration rate in the Current Population Survey (CPS), which has received considerable attention, is not reflected in other available data. In this paper, we use administrative records data to investigate labor mobility and migration within the U.S. We investigate the discrepancy in recent migration trends in the CPS and migration rates derived from administrative records sources using CPS microdata linked to administrative records on residential location. We find that a substantial fraction of CPS respondents who are cross-state migrants in the administrative records data do not report a cross-state move in the CPS, and that this disagreement has grown over time. Despite this disagreement in recent trends in overall interstate migration, rates and trends related to economic migration are remarkably similar in available data sources.
    Date: 2016–01
  11. By: Licia Ferranna (Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, Department of Economics); Margherita Gerolimetto (Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, Department of Economics); Stefano Magrini (Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, Department of Economics)
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the impact of immigration on the dynamics of the cross-sectional distribution of GSP per capita and per worker. To achieve this we combine different approaches: on the one hand, we establish via Instrumental Variable estimation the effect of the inflow of foreign- born workers on output per worker, employment and population; on the other hand, using the Distribution Dynamics approach, we reconstruct the consequences of migration flows on convergence dynamics across US states.
    Keywords: Immigration, Convergence, Distribution Dynamics, Counterfactual Analysis
    JEL: R12 C14
    Date: 2016
  12. By: Lu, Ming (Asian Development Bank Institute); Xia, Yiran (Asian Development Bank Institute)
    Abstract: This report summarizes the characteristics of migration in the People’s Republic of China (PRC) after its reforms and opening up. Rapid urbanization in the PRC has resulted from recent decades of intense rural–urban migration. The scale of migration increased rapidly and long-term migration is the main characteristic. The population characteristics of migration are determined not only by a personal decision, but also a joint decision within households to send members with comparative advantages in manufacturing and services, usually male and young, to work in cities. Coastal regions where manufacturing and services are better developed, especially big cities, are the major destinations. The aspiration for higher-income and better job opportunities is the major force that drives migration, while public services and urban amenities also partly account for population flows. However, in the PRC, there are still major institutional barriers—especially the hukou system and related segmentation in the urban labor market, social security, and public services access—that hinder rural–urban and interregional migration. Facing the challenges of fast urbanization and growing urban diseases, local governments still rely on the current system to control the population flow into large cities. Controlling population growth by discriminative policies will lead to more social problems. Policy makers should reconsider the way to achieve efficient and harmonious urbanization by shifting to more pro-market policies and reducing the migration costs embedded in institutional constraints.
    Keywords: migration; rural-urban migration; PRC; urbanization; hukou system; People’s Republic of China; rapid urbanization
    JEL: J61 P25 R23
    Date: 2016–10–17

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