nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2020‒11‒23
eight papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
La Trobe University

  1. The Decision to Flee: Analyzing Gender-Specific Determinants of International Refugee Migration By Schmid, Lena; Renner, Laura
  2. Legal Status and Political Representation: The 1986 IRCA and Hispanic Public Officials By Sabet, Navid
  3. Immigration vs. Poverty: Causal Impact on Demand for Redistribution in a Survey Experiment By Windsteiger, Lisa; Martinangeli, Andrea
  4. The polarizing impact of numeracy, economic literacy, and science literacy on attitudes toward immigration By Lucia Savadori; Giuseppe Espa; Maria Michela Dickson
  5. Who Does Not like Migrants? Individual Demographics and Attitudes Towards Migration By Rozo, Sandra V.; Urbina, Maria J.
  6. Hukou Status, Housing Tenure Choice and Wealth Accumulation in Urban China By Liao, Yu; Zhang, Junfu
  7. Economic Assimilation of the "Third Generation": An Intergenerational Mobility Perspective on Immigration and Integration By Zorlu, Aslan; van Gent, Wouter
  8. Has the Pandemic Reduced U.S. Remittances Going to Latin America? By Matthew Higgins; Thomas Klitgaard

  1. By: Schmid, Lena; Renner, Laura
    Abstract: Using a gravity approach, we explore determinants and dynamics of refugee migration using a gendered cross-national dyadic dataset on refugee movements for the years 2000-2015. Along three dimensions (push, pull and cost factors), we analyze whether there are heterogeneous effects of ight determinants for men and women. Our results suggest that within the push dimension there is only little difference in gender-specific responses. Most prominently, women react relatively stronger to the existence of sexual violence as a con ict strategy. When it comes to dyadic factors, we find that distance is a decisive factor for men and women. The most gender-sensitive dimension appears to be the pull factors: Neighboring countries attract more women in comparison to men as well as to non-neighbors. For non-neighbors, female ows are more sensitive to political stability, women's rights and the economic situation of the destination
    Keywords: Refugees,International Migration,Distance,Conflict,Gender
    JEL: F22
    Date: 2020
  2. By: Sabet, Navid
    Abstract: What factors lead underrepresented groups to gain more political representation? I digitize a novel source of data that contains records of Hispanics elected to public office from the local to the federal level from 1984 to 1994 and exploit variation in legal status arising from the 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA), which legalized three million Hispanic migrants in the United States, to shed light on this question. I find that counties with more per capita legalized migrants experience significant increases in the number of Hispanics in public office around 1992 when the migrants first gained the right to vote. The result is driven almost entirely by increases at the local level, in particular school board members and mayors of small towns, and is stronger in counties with larger Hispanic populations, pointing to network effects. Individuals in IRCA-affected counties are more politically active, lending credence to the view that the political engagement of the newly legalized helps drive the results. I find no evidence for increased Hispanic candidate entry. Finally, I provide indirect evidence that demand for representation, rather than candidate competence, drives Hispanic selection to public office. Together, the results open a new dimension to the economics of legal status: its effects on political representation.
    Keywords: immigrant legalization,identity politics,political representation,franchise extension
    JEL: J15 H72 P16
    Date: 2020
  3. By: Windsteiger, Lisa; Martinangeli, Andrea
    Abstract: In a survey experiment conducted in Germany, we investigate how preferences over both the financing and the provision of redistributive policies are affected by poverty and immigration. We find that while information about poverty has no detectable impact on the progressivity of the respondents' demanded income tax schedule, information about immigration has a sizeable and signi ficant negative impact for middle income respondents. The opposite holds for low income earners, such that effects cancel out at the aggregate level. On the provision side, middle income respondents see public education as a viable response to both poverty and immigration, while low income respondents desire less public expenditure on education due to immigration. These heterogeneities suggest that understanding the relationship between immigration, poverty and demand for redistribution and addressing its pitfalls requires in-depth investigations by population segment.
    Keywords: Immigration,poverty,redistribution,survey experiment
    JEL: D31 D63 H53 J15
    Date: 2020
  4. By: Lucia Savadori; Giuseppe Espa; Maria Michela Dickson
    Abstract: Political orientation polarizes the attitudes of more educated individuals on controversial issues. A highly controversial issue in Europe is immigration. We found the same polarizing pattern for opinion toward immigration in a representative sample of citizens of a southern European middle-size city. Citizens with higher numeracy, scientific and economic literacy presented a more polarized view of immigration, depending on their worldview orientation. Highly knowledgeable individuals endorsing an egalitarian-communitarian worldview were more in favor of immigration, whereas highly knowledgeable individuals with a hierarchical-individualist worldview were less in favor of immigration. Those low in numerical, economic, and scientific literacy did not show a polarized attitude. Results highlight the central role of socio-political orientation over information theories in shaping attitudes toward immigration.
    Date: 2020–11
  5. By: Rozo, Sandra V. (USC Marshall School of Business); Urbina, Maria J. (USC Marshall School of Business)
    Abstract: We exploit the quasi-random settlement of refugees in Sweden between 1985 and 1994 to examine the characteristics of individuals showing a disproportionate negative response to migration flows and whether these responses differ when the arrival of refugees occurred concurrently with economic shocks. We document that, on average, migration shocks translate to lower support for immigration. These responses are disproportionately driven by the changes in attitudes of young males, with less wealth, and who work in blue-collar occupations. Also, we find more support for immigration where employment increased and tax collection was lower concurrent with the arrival of refugees.
    Keywords: migration, attitudes, demography
    JEL: D72 F2 O15 R23
    Date: 2020–11
  6. By: Liao, Yu (Clark University); Zhang, Junfu (Clark University)
    Abstract: In Chinese cities, migrants with rural hukou, compared to residents with local urban hukou, face more uncertainty, have limited access to mortgage finance, and are less eligible for low-cost housing. A simple model demonstrates that for these reasons, rural- to-urban migrants are less likely to own housing units in cities and as a result accumulate less wealth. Our empirical analysis examines a nationally representative household survey from 2013 and uses mother's hukou status as an instrumental variable. We find that household heads with rural hukou are about 20 percentage points less likely to own housing units in cities than comparable household heads with local urban hukou. Consequently, the average household head with a rural hukou owns 310 thousand yuan less housing wealth and 213 thousand yuan less total wealth than comparable household heads with local urban hukou. The average household head with a rural hukou has 286 thousand yuan less in housing capital gains than comparable household heads with local urban hukou. Moreover, we find that these differences are much larger in the first- and second-tier cities, cities with more stringent hukou regulations, and among younger cohorts.
    Keywords: hukou, tenure choice, wealth, Chinese economy
    JEL: R0 R2 H0
    Date: 2020–11
  7. By: Zorlu, Aslan (University of Amsterdam); van Gent, Wouter (University of Amsterdam)
    Abstract: This paper examines ethnic disparities in intergenerational economic mobility for the children of second-generation "migrants." Using rich register data for adult children aged 20 to 30, we provide empirical evidence on the economic assimilation outcomes of the descendants of immigrants who mainly arrived in the Netherlands in the post-World War II period. Acknowledging a high degree of diversity in the starting positions of immigrants associated with their dominant migration motives, we estimate the Dutch-migrant group gap in incomes from an intergenerational mobility perspective. Our descriptive rank-rank analysis reveals significant ethnic disparities in absolute and relative intergenerational income mobility. The absolute mobility of the ethnic groups we study appears to have the following rank order: Moroccan, Turkish Surinamese, Indish, German, and Dutch. While a higher level of intergenerational transmission of parental income narrows the gap for Turkish and Surinamese children, it widens the gap for Indish and Moroccan children. Our decomposition analysis shows that the ethnic disparities found for the Moroccan, Turkish, and Surinamese third generation are entirely explained by their relatively young ages and associated unfavorable socioeconomic positions, and by their lower parental income levels.
    Keywords: income, third generation, second generation, immigrants
    JEL: J15 J31 J61
    Date: 2020–11
  8. By: Matthew Higgins; Thomas Klitgaard
    Abstract: Workers' remittances—funds that migrants send to their country of birth—are an important source of income for a number of economies in Latin America, with the bulk of these funds coming from the United States. Have these flows dried up, given the COVID-19 recession and resulting unprecedented job losses? We find that remittances initially faltered but rebounded in the summer months, performing better than during the last U.S. recession despite more severe job losses. Large government income support payments probably explain some of this resilience. Whether remittances continue to hold up is likely to depend on how quickly the U.S. job market recovers, particularly in hard-hit service industries.
    Keywords: remittance; Latin America; Mexico; Central America; United States; pandemic; recession; COVID-19; migrants
    JEL: F00
    Date: 2020–11–09

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