nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2017‒05‒21
fifteen papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
La Trobe University

  1. Over-education and Life Satisfaction among Immigrant and Non-immigrant Workers in Canada By Frank, Kristyn; Hou, Feng
  2. Intra-household Selection into Migration: Evidence from a Matched Sample of Migrants and Origin Households in Senegal By Isabelle Chort; Jean-Noël Senne
  3. Immigration and Innovation: Evidence from Canadian Cities By Blit, Joel; Skuterud, Mikal; Zhang, Jue
  4. International Migration and Regional Housing Markets: Evidence from France By Hippolyte d'Albis; Ekrame Boubtane; Dramane Coulibaly
  5. Migration, Forced Displacement and Fertility during Civil War: A Survival Analysis By Philip Verwimp; Davide Osti; Gudrun Ostby
  6. Self-Employment Differentials among Foreign-Born STEM and Non-STEM Workers By Cai, Zhengyu; Winters, John V.
  7. Cities, towns, and poverty: migration equilibrium and income distribution in a todaro-type model with mulitiple destinations By Luc Christiaensen; Joachim De Weerdt; Ravi Kanbur
  8. Climate Change, Gender, Decision-Making Power, and Migration into the Saiss Region of Morocco By Dina Najjar; Boubaker Dhehibi; Aden Aw-Hassan; Abderrahim Bentaibi
  9. The Effect of Natural Disasters on Economic Activity in US Counties: A Century of Data By Leah Platt Boustan; Matthew E. Kahn; Paul W. Rhode; Maria Lucia Yanguas
  10. Labour Mobility in the EU: Addressing challenges and ensuring ‘fair mobility’ By Barslund, Mikkel; Busse, Matthias
  11. A Theory on the Economic Impacts of Immigration By Harashima, Taiji
  12. Determinants of Mexico-US outwards and return migration flows: A state-level panel data analysis By Isabelle Chort; Maëlys De La Rupelle
  13. The Role of Informal Urban Settlements in Upward Mobility By Ivan Turok; Josh Budlender; Justin Visagie
  14. Job-related Mobility and Plant Performance in Sweden By Eriksson, Rikard; Rodríguez-Pose, Andrés
  15. Foreign Peer Effects and STEM Major Choice By Anelli, Massimo; Shih, Kevin Y.; Williams, Kevin

  1. By: Frank, Kristyn; Hou, Feng
    Abstract: The increased migration of skilled workers globally has led to a focus in the immigration literature on the economic costs of unsuccessful labour market integration. Less attention has been given to the consequences of employment difficulties, such as those related to over-education, on aspects of immigrants? subjective well-being. Although a large proportion of immigrants experience over-education, studies examining the relationship between over-education and life satisfaction tend to concentrate on the general population. These studies find a negative relationship between over-education and life satisfaction. Since immigrant and Canadian-born (non-immigrant) workers may experience over-education differently, it is important to examine this relationship in both groups. This study examines how over-education is associated with life satisfaction among university-educated immigrant and non-immigrant workers in Canada, and accounts for differences in the degree of over-education in each group.
    Keywords: Education, training and learning, Educational attainment, Health, Job training and educational attainment, Labour, Mental health and well-being, Outcomes of education
    Date: 2017–05–05
  2. By: Isabelle Chort (LEDa - Laboratoire d'Economie de Dauphine - Université Paris-Dauphine); Jean-Noël Senne (LEDa - Laboratoire d'Economie de Dauphine - Université Paris-Dauphine, PSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: This paper fills the gap between individual selection models and collective approaches of migration. We build a theoretical model in order to account for household-based migration decisions and derive its implications on migrant selection. Assuming that the origin household maximizes a collective utility including earnings but also further remittances when choosing the one among its members who is to migrate, migrant selection in this case may differ from what is predicted by a pure individual decision model. Therefore, we specifically tackle the so far under-explored issue of intra-household selection into migration in order to identify what are the key determinants of household members' location choices. We derive our estimation procedure from an extension of the Roy-Dahl model and provide empirical evidence using a unique matched sample of 926 Senegalese migrants in three destination countries - France, Italy and Mauritania - and their origin household in Senegal. Our results show that expected remittances, along with earnings differentials, play a major role in shaping intra-household selection patterns, which stands in striking contrast with usual predictions from individual self-selection models.
    Abstract: Ce papier, en se situant à l’interface des modèles de sélection individuelle et des approches collectives de la migration, apporte un éclairage nouveau sur la question centrale de la sélection des individus dans la migration. Un modèle théorique est tout d’abord proposé pour décrire le processus de décision de migration au niveau du ménage d’origine et, par là même, appréhender la complexité de la sélection du migrant lorsque la migration est envisagée comme une stratégie familiale. Le modèle fait l’hypothèse que le choix du membre du ménage en migration résulte de la maximisation de l’utilité collective du ménage d’origine, qui dépend non seulement des revenus mais aussi des transferts attendus de la part du migrant sélectionné. Dans ce cas, la sélection dans la migration peut différer de celle qui aurait prévalue dans le cadre d’un modèle de décision purement individuel. Ainsi, ce chapitre s’attaque à une problématique qui reste totalement inexplorée dans la littérature, à savoir la sélection intra-ménage dans la migration, et a pour ambition d’identifier les déterminants clés des choix de localisation des différents membres du ménage. Dans le prolongement du modèle de Roy, une procédure d’estimation novatrice est ensuite suggérée, permettant de tester les prédictions théoriques précédentes. L’analyse empirique se fonde sur des données uniques, issues du projet MIDDAS, et constituées d’un échantillon de migrants sénégalais dans trois pays de destinations (France, Italie et Mauritanie) appariés avec les non-migrants de leur ménage d’origine. Les résultats suggèrent que les différentiels de revenus, mais également les transferts attendus, jouent un rôle prépondérant dans la sélection du migrant au sein de son ménage d’origine, se posant ainsi en contraste avec les prédictions classiques des modèles de sélection individuels.
    Keywords: Migration,remittances,intra-household allocation,selection
    Date: 2017–04–28
  3. By: Blit, Joel (University of Waterloo); Skuterud, Mikal (University of Waterloo); Zhang, Jue (University of Waterloo)
    Abstract: We examine the effect of changes in skilled-immigrant population shares in 98 Canadian cities between 1981 and 2006 on per capita patents. The Canadian case is of interest because its 'points system' for selecting immigrants is viewed as a model of skilled immigration policy. Our estimates suggest unambiguously smaller beneficial impacts of increasing the university-educated immigrant population share than comparable U.S. estimates, whereas our estimates of the contribution of Canadian-born university graduates are virtually identical in magnitude to the U.S. estimates. The modest contribution of Canadian immigrants to innovation is, in large part, explained by the low employment rates of Canadian STEM-educated immigrants in STEM jobs. Our results point to the value of providing employers with a role in the immigrant screening process.
    Keywords: immigration, innovation, immigration policy
    JEL: J61 J18 O31
    Date: 2017–04
  4. By: Hippolyte d'Albis; Ekrame Boubtane; Dramane Coulibaly
    Abstract: This article examines the causal relations between immigration and the characteristics of the housing market in host regions. We constructed a unique database from administrative records and used it to assess annual migration ows into France's 22 administrative regions from 1990 to 2013. We then estimated various panel VAR models,taking into account GDP per capita and the unemployment rate as the main regional economic indicators. We find that immigration has no significant effect on property prices, but that higher property prices significantly reduce immigration rates. We also find no significant relationship between immigration and social housing supply.
    Keywords: Immigration, Property Prices, Social Housing, Panel VAR.
    JEL: E20 F22 J61
    Date: 2017
  5. By: Philip Verwimp; Davide Osti; Gudrun Ostby
    Abstract: The civil war in Burundi (1993-2005) caused a massflow of refugees into neighboring countries as well as a large number of internally displaced persons. In fact, half of the population was displaced at least once during the course of the conflict. The aim of this study is to explore to what extent migration during the conflict impacted fertility outcomes. Using retrospective data on birth and residential histories at the mother-year level from a nationally representative survey conducted in August 2002, we examine the impact of war and migration on the probability of first births and on birth spacing. A parametric survival regression model is adopted to predict the hazard of having an additional child on a sample of about 4,500 Burundian women. Our results suggest that the risk of an additional pregnancy is higher in years of forced displacement of the mother, whereas it is lower in the case of residence in the forced displacement site. We do not find a statistically significant effect different from no migration in the years that the women voluntary migrated. Fertility however sharply increases once the women resided in the migration site.
    Keywords: fertility; forced displacement; migration; civil war; Burundi
    JEL: C25 C41 J13 N37 N47
    Date: 2017–05–09
  6. By: Cai, Zhengyu (Southwestern University of Finance and Economics); Winters, John V. (Oklahoma State University)
    Abstract: This paper uses the American Community Survey to examine the previously overlooked fact that foreign STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) graduates have much lower self-employment rates than their non-STEM counterparts, with an unconditional difference of 3.3 percentage points. We find empirical support for differing earnings opportunities as a partial explanation for this self-employment gap. High wages in STEM paid-employment combined with reduced earnings in self-employment make self-employment less desirable for STEM graduates. High self-employment rates among other foreign-born workers partially reflect weak paid-employment opportunities. Public policy should encourage efficient use of worker skills rather than low-value business venture creation.
    Keywords: self-employment, immigration, foreign-born, college major, STEM, earnings
    JEL: F22 J15 J31 L26
    Date: 2017–04
  7. By: Luc Christiaensen; Joachim De Weerdt; Ravi Kanbur
    Abstract: Should public investment be targeted to big cities or to small towns, if the objective is to minimize national poverty? To answer this policy question we extend the basic Todaro-type model of rural-urban migration to the case of migration from rural areas to two potential destinations, secondary town and big city. We first derive conditions under which a poverty gradient from rural to town to city will exist as an equilibrium phenomenon. We then address the policy question and show how the answer depends on the migration response, where the poverty line lies relative to incomes in the three locations, and at times also the poverty index itself. In particular, we develop sufficient statistics for the policy decisions based on these income parameters and illustrate the empirical remit of the model with long running panel data from Kagera, Tanzania. Further, we show that the structure of the sufficient statistics is maintained in the case where the model is generalized to introduce heterogeneous workers and jobs. Overall, the findings confirm that, given migration responses, national poverty outcomes are not immune to whether urban employment generation takes place in the towns or the city.
    Keywords: Secondary towns versus big cities, Poverty reduction, Poverty gradient, Todaro model, Migration equilibrium, Equilibrium income distribution
    Date: 2017–04
  8. By: Dina Najjar (International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas); Boubaker Dhehibi; Aden Aw-Hassan; Abderrahim Bentaibi
    Abstract: Studies on migration in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region have so far focused on migration to urban areas (local cities and European countries). Little research has explored internal migration into rural areas. Yet in Morocco rural-rural migration is an important strategy for many who are escaping climate variability and unemployment in their hometowns to take advantage of labor opportunities in thriving agricultural enterprises. Gender remains largely missing from migration research in Morocco especially for migrant women. Gender differences are important to account for as men and women have diverse motives, strategies and experiences with migration, and thus require different interventions. In light of gender differences and climate-induced migration and investments in irrigation, this research follows up on the ground to understand the experiences of men and women laborer as the migration continues in three rural areas in the Saiss region (Morocco). These are chosen based on differences in socio-economic, gender norms, and biophysical dynamics to capture as diverse experiences as possible with labor work and migration as possible. These areas also represent both sending and receiving communities. Data was collected through a survey administered to 400 laborers (179 women and 221 men) employed in the intensified agricultural sector of Saiss in Morocco. Using gender analysis, logistic regression models framework and political ecology approach, our findings emphasize that men should be sensitized in their attainment of tertiary education on gender equality and the importance soliciting women’s participation in decision-making, particularly with regards to assets (house). For the economic advancement of women, there should be a sustained focus on their ownership and control over unalienable assets (such as housing). The same recommendation applies to the youth. Finally, we found that migrants were less likely to control houses that they owned probably due to a general lack of title deeds. We recommend formalizing their ownership of housing in the settlement areas.
    Date: 2017–01–06
  9. By: Leah Platt Boustan; Matthew E. Kahn; Paul W. Rhode; Maria Lucia Yanguas
    Abstract: Major natural disasters such as Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy cause numerous fatalities, and destroy property and infrastructure. In any year, the U.S experiences dozens of smaller natural disasters as well. We construct a 90 year panel data set that includes the universe of natural disasters in the United States from 1920 to 2010. By exploiting spatial and temporal variation, we study how these shocks affected migration rates, home prices and local poverty rates. The most severe disasters increase out migration rates and lower housing prices, especially in areas at particular risk of disaster activity, but milder disasters have little effect.
    JEL: N42 Q5 R23
    Date: 2017–05
  10. By: Barslund, Mikkel; Busse, Matthias
    Abstract: Labour mobility creates economic benefits for the EU at large and the mobile workforce. The same can be said for the special case of posted workers – a form of labour mobility that is crucial to the functioning of the internal market for services. Moreover, the number of posted workers is set to grow if the single market is further deepened. However, regulating the cross-border posting of workers – and ensuring a notion of ‘fair mobility’ – also epitomises the inherent difficulties in squaring the differences of 28 different sets of labour market regimes and regulations with the freedom to provide services in situ. In addition, the regulation has to work effectively in countries with large differences in income levels and social policies. This paper reviews the state of play with regard to posted workers and spell out the trade-offs involved to be kept in mind when considering the targeted revision of the posted workers Directive.
    Date: 2016–06
  11. By: Harashima, Taiji
    Abstract: The standard view on the economic impact of immigration has been criticized for its inability to solve the “immigration policy puzzle.” It also has a problem in that the “net” income of heterogeneous workers is equalized. These problems arise because the standard view generally depends on a production function in which the elasticity of substitution between heterogeneous workers is constant. This paper constructs an alternative production function in which the elasticity of substitution between heterogeneous workers is not constant and is instead based on a model of total factor productivity. The alternative view presented based on this production function indicates that an “open door” policy is not necessarily economically optimal for host countries under some conditions
    Keywords: Immigration; Immigration policy; Production function
    JEL: D24 E23 E24 F22 F62 F66 F68
    Date: 2017–05–05
  12. By: Isabelle Chort (LEDa - Laboratoire d'Economie de Dauphine - Université Paris-Dauphine); Maëlys De La Rupelle (THEMA - Théorie Economique, Modélisation et Applications - Université de Cergy Pontoise)
    Abstract: In this paper, we investigate the determinants of the regional patterns of Mexico-US migration flows.Along with traditional economic determinants, we examine the role played by environmental factorsand violence in Mexico in determining migration patterns and their evolutions. We estimate a microgroundedgravity model of migration using a panel dataset of state-to-state emigration and returnmigration flows between Mexico and the US for the period 1995-2012. We exploit the time anddyadic dimension of the data to control for time-invariant and time-variant characteristics ofdestination states, including migration policies. Our results suggest that along with the traditionaleconomic determinants of migration, climatic and social factors contribute to shaping regionalmigration patterns.
    Abstract: Nous étudions dans cet article les déterminants des tendances régionales des flux migratoires entre leMexique et les Etats-Unis. A côté des déterminants économiques traditionnels des migrations, nousexplorons le rôle de facteurs environnementaux et sociaux sur les caractéristiques et l’évolution desflux migratoires entre états. Nous estimons un modèle de gravité micro-fondé, à partir de données depanel sur les flux migratoires entrants et de retour entre états mexicains et états-uniens sur la période1995-2012. Nous exploitons la dimension temporelle et dyadique de nos données pour contrôler pourles caractéristiques des états de destination susceptibles d’affecter les flux migratoires, notamment leschangements de politiques migratoires. Nos résultats suggèrent que les facteurs sociaux et climatiquescontribuent à expliquer les tendances régionales observées.
    Keywords: Mexico-U.S. migration,Changement climatique,Climate change,Catastrophes naturelles,Mexique,Migration internationale,Etats-Unis,Natural disasters,Modèle de gravité,International migration,Gravity equation
    Date: 2017–04–28
  13. By: Ivan Turok; Josh Budlender; Justin Visagie (HSRC; Professor)
    Abstract: The paper uses longitudinal data for South Africa to explore the magnitude of social progression among people living within informal settlements compared with the residents of rural areas and formal urban areas. The objective is to assess whether shack settlements foster or frustrate human progress in the way they link people to the services, contacts and livelihoods concentrated in cities.
    Keywords: Informal urban settlements; South Africa; social mobility; livelihoods; rural-urban migration
    JEL: E26 I3 J46 O17 R0
    Date: 2017–02
  14. By: Eriksson, Rikard; Rodríguez-Pose, Andrés
    Abstract: This paper uses a Swedish micro-dataset containing 2,696,909 hires during the period 2002-2006 to assess the impact of job-related mobility on plant-level performance. The analysis classifies new recruits according to their work experience and level of formal qualification, as well as by the region of origin and of destination. New hires are divided into graduates and experienced workers and between high- and low-educated. The results point towards the importance of acknowledging both the experience and the skills of new recruits. The greatest benefits are related to hiring new workers from outside the region where the plant is located. The analysis also stresses the importance of geography, with plants in metropolitan regions gaining the most from labour mobility, while plants in smaller, more peripheral regions getting virtually no benefits from hiring new workers.
    Keywords: agglomeration; education; experience; labour mobility; productivity; Sweden
    JEL: J24 J62 R11
    Date: 2017–05
  15. By: Anelli, Massimo (Bocconi University); Shih, Kevin Y. (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute); Williams, Kevin (University of Utah)
    Abstract: Since the 1980s the United States has faced growing disinterest and high attrition from STEM majors. Over the same period, foreign-born enrollment in U.S. higher education has increased steadily. This paper examines whether foreign-born peers affect the likelihood American college students graduate with a STEM major. Using administrative student records from a large public university in California, we exploit idiosyncratic variation in the share of foreign peers across introductory math courses taught by the same professor over time. Results indicate that a 1 standard deviation increase in foreign peers reduces the likelihood native-born students graduate with STEM majors by 3 percentage points – equivalent to 3.7 native students displaced for 9 additional foreign students in an average course. STEM displacement is offset by an increased likelihood of choosing Social Science majors. However, the earnings prospects of displaced students are minimally affected as they appear to be choosing Social Science majors with equally high earning power. We demonstrate that comparative advantage and linguistic dissonance may operate as underlying mechanisms.
    Keywords: immigration, peer effects, higher education, college major, STEM
    JEL: I21 I23 I28 J21 J24
    Date: 2017–04

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