nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2019‒04‒08
seven papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
La Trobe University

  1. Monopsony Power and Guest Worker Programs By Gibbons, Eric M.; Greenman, Allie; Norlander, Peter; Sørensen, Todd
  2. Immigration, Social Networks and Occupational Mismatch By Alaverdyan, Sevak; Zaharieva, Anna
  3. Brain Drain and Brain Gain in Italy and Ireland in the Age of Mass Migration By Matteo Gomellini; Cormac Ó Gráda
  4. Sub-Saharan migrants' life conditions in Morocco in light of migration policy changes By Bendra, Imane
  5. The Effect of Immigration on the Well-Being of Native Populations: Evidence from the United Kingdom By Papageorgiou, Athanasios
  6. Narrative analysis of Syrians, South Sudanese and Libyans transiting in Egypt: A MOA approach By Syed Zwick, Hélène
  7. Local Labor Markets in Canada and the United States By David Albouy; Alex Chernoff; Chandler Lutz; Casey Warman

  1. By: Gibbons, Eric M.; Greenman, Allie; Norlander, Peter; Sørensen, Todd
    Abstract: Guest workers on visas in the United States may be unable to quit bad employers due to barriers to mobility and a lack of labor market competition. Using H-1B, H-2A, and H-2B program data, we calculate the concentration of employers in geographically defined labor markets within occupations. We find that many guest workers face moderately or highly concentrated labor markets, based on federal merger scrutiny guidelines, and that concentration generally decreases wages. For example, moving from a market with an HHI of zero to a market comprised of two employers lowers H-1B worker wages approximately 10 percent, and a pure monopsony (one employer) reduces wages by 13 percent. A simulation shows that wages under pure monopsony could be 47 percent lower, suggesting that employers do not use the extent of their monopsony power. Enforcing wage regulations and decreasing barriers to mobility may better address issues of exploitation than antitrust scrutiny.
    Date: 2019
  2. By: Alaverdyan, Sevak (Center for Mathematical Economics, Bielefeld University); Zaharieva, Anna (Center for Mathematical Economics, Bielefeld University)
    Abstract: In this study we investigate the link between the job search channels that workers use to find employment and the probability of occupational mismatch in the new job. Our specific focus is on differences between native and immigrant workers. We use data from the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) over the period 2000-2014. First, we document that referral hiring via social networks is the most frequent single channel of generating jobs in Germany; in relative terms referrals are used more frequently by immigrant workers compared to natives. Second, our data reveals that referral hiring is associated with the highest rate of occupational mismatch among all channels in Germany. We combine these findings and use them to develop a theoretical search and matching model with two ethnic groups of workers (natives and immigrants), two search channels (formal and referral hiring) and two occupations. When modeling social networks we take into account ethnic and professional homophily in the link formation. Our model predicts that immigrant workers face stronger risk of unemployment and often rely on recommendations from their friends and relatives as a channel of last resort. Furthermore, higher rates of referral hiring produce more frequent occupational mismatch of the immigrant population compared to natives. We test this prediction empirically and confirm that more intensive network hiring contributes significantly to higher rates of occupational mismatch among immigrants. Finally, we document that the gaps in the incidence of referrals and mismatch rates are reduced among second generation immigrants indicating some degree of integration in the German labour market.
    Keywords: job search, referrals, social networks, occupational mismatch, immigration
    Date: 2019–03–29
  3. By: Matteo Gomellini; Cormac Ó Gráda
    Abstract: Emigrants from Italy and Ireland contributed disproportionately to the Age of Mass Migration. That their departure improved the living standards of those they left behind is hardly in doubt. Nevertheless, a voluminous literature on the selectivity of migrant flows— both from sending and receiving country perspectives—has given rise to claims that migration generates both ‘brain drains’ and ‘brain gains’. On the one hand, positive or negative selection among emigrants may affect the level of human capital in sending countries. On the other hand, the prospect of emigration and return migration may both spur investment in schooling in source countries. This essay describes the history of emigration from Italy and Ireland during the Age of Mass Migration from these perspectives.
    Keywords: Migration; Brain Drain; Brain Gain; Human Capital; Italy; Ireland
    JEL: F22 J61 N33 O15
    Date: 2019–03
  4. By: Bendra, Imane
    Abstract: Reinforced security at the European Union borders led many migrants from sub-Saharan countries to settle in Morocco. For years, Morocco’s migration policy has adopted a security approach towards irregular migration through the containment, mistreatment and deportation of migrants. However, on 9 September 2013 the government announced a new National Strategy for Immigration and Asylum (NSIA) whereby a more human approach to migration would be adopted. The NSIA aimed to ensure equal opportunities for the migrants, improve their access to economic, cultural and political rights, and change the perception of migration in society. The article looks at the reasons behind the change in Morocco’s migration policy. It further explores, through migrants’ and Non-governmental organisation perceptions, how migrants’ status (illegality/legality) and the socio-political conditions within the country affect their potential integration or/and exclusion. This paper concludes with policy recommendations to improve the migration policy and migrants’ living conditions.
    Keywords: migrants; migration; Morocco
    Date: 2019–02
  5. By: Papageorgiou, Athanasios
    Abstract: Immigration has long been a controversial topic in the political landscape of the United Kingdom. Public scepticism over the adverse effects of immigration has largely determined the outcome of the recent referendum on the UK’s membership in the EU. This is especially the case for certain demographic groups, such as older people who tend to be more opposed to immigration. The aim of this study is to explore the relationship between migrant inflows and the subjective well-being of natives in the United Kingdom. The empirical analysis relies on a combined dataset from the British Household Panel Survey (BHPS) and the UK Household Longitudinal Study (UKHLS) for the entire UK covering the period 2004-2016, while subjective well-being is captured by life satisfaction and general happiness. Using respondents’ geographic identifiers allows us to map net migration at the local authority level. Our results suggest that immigration has only a minor effect on the subjective well-being of natives. We also examine how our estimates vary across socio-demographic groups and conclude that there is some degree of heterogeneity in terms of gender, age, marital and job status, although our results are not statistically significant. To account for endogeneity and reverse causality we apply the instrumental variable (IV) approach. The IV results suggest a positive effect of immigration on natives’ well-being, however the magnitude of the estimated coefficient appears to be quite small. Furthermore, we perform several additional tests to ensure the robustness of our estimates. Finally, we suggest that labour market and health outcomes may be two possible channels through which migrant inflows affect the subjective well-being of British natives.
    Keywords: Subjective well-being; Immigration; Fixed effects; Local authority district; UK
    JEL: C23 F22 I31 R23
    Date: 2018–09
  6. By: Syed Zwick, Hélène
    Abstract: This study applies the motivation – opportunity – ability (MOA) theoretical framework to study the intention – behaviour gap for asylum seekers and refugees who are currently transiting through Egypt and are intending to leave the country in the short term. Primary data was collected through the narratives of fifteen asylum seekers or refugees, coming from South Sudan, Libya or Syria. Results are threefold: firstly, findings confirm the need to rely on behavioural factors while studying transit migration. Secondly, the respective role of motivational, opportunistic and ability factors is significantly different across our three origin country groups. Lastly, extrinsic motivation, performance experience and societal factors are the most important drivers of transit through Egypt for South Sudanese respondents, while intrinsic motivation plays this crucial role for Syrian and Libyan respondents.
    Keywords: refugees, behavioural migration economics, MOA approach, Egypt
    JEL: F22 J15 O15
    Date: 2019
  7. By: David Albouy; Alex Chernoff; Chandler Lutz; Casey Warman
    Abstract: We examine local labor markets in the U.S. and Canada from 1990 to 2011 using comparable household and business data. Wage levels and inequality rise with city population in both countries, albeit less in Canada. Neither country saw wage levels converge despite contrasting migration patterns from/to high-wage areas. Local labor demand shifts raise nominal wages similarly, although in Canada they attract immigrant and highly-skilled workers more, while raising housing costs less. Chinese import competition had a weaker negative impact on manufacturing employment in Canada. These results are consistent with Canada's more redistributive transfer system and larger, more-educated immigrant workforce.
    JEL: J21 J31 J61 N32 R12
    Date: 2019–03

This nep-mig issue is ©2019 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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