nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2021‒04‒26
twelve papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
La Trobe University

  1. Immigration and Regional Specialization in AI By Gordon H. Hanson
  2. Perception of Institutional Quality Difference and Return Migration Intention: The Case of the Vietnamese Diaspora By Ngoc Thi Minh Tran; Michael P. Cameron; Jacques Poot
  3. The International Transmission of Local Economic Shocks Through Migrant Networks By María Esther Caballero; Brian Cadena; Brian K. Kovak
  4. How the Earnings Growth of U.S. Immigrants Was Underestimated By Duleep, Harriet; Liu, Xingfei; Regets, Mark
  5. Social origins and social mobility: the educational and labour market outcomes of the children of immigrants in the UK By Carolina Zuccotti; Lucinda Platt
  6. The Sleeping Giant Who Left for America: The Determinants and Impact of Danish Emigration During the Age of Mass Migration By Nina Boberg-Fazlić; Markus Lampe; Paul Sharp
  7. Refugee influx and economic activity: evidence from Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh By José Joaquín Endara
  8. Immigration and electoral outcomes: Evidence from the 2015 refugee inflow to Germany By Bredtmann, Julia
  9. Migration and terrorism By Krieger, Tim
  10. Gender, Selection into Employment, and the Wage Impact of Immigration By George J. Borjas; Anthony Edo
  11. Migration Costs, Sorting, and the Agricultural Productivity Gap By Qingen Gai; Naijia Guo; Bingjing Li; Qinghua Shi; Xiaodong Zhu
  12. Differences in Immigrants Wage Gap: Evidence from Chile By Roberto à lvarez; Miguel A. González; Jaime Ruiz-Tagle

  1. By: Gordon H. Hanson
    Abstract: I examine the specialization of US commuting zones in AI-related occupations over the 2000 to 2018 period. I define AI-related jobs based on keywords in Census occupational titles. Using the approach in Lin (2011) to identify new work, I measure job growth related to AI by weighting employment growth in AI-related occupations by the share of job titles in these occupations that were added after 1990. Overall, regional specialization in AI-related activities mirrors that of regional specialization in IT. However, foreign-born and native-born workers within the sector tend to cluster in different locations. Whereas specialization of the foreign-born in AI-related jobs is strongest in high-tech hubs with a preponderance of private-sector employment, native-born specialization in AI-related jobs is strongest in centers for military and space-related research. Nationally, foreign-born workers account for 55% of job growth in AI-related occupations since 2000. In regression analysis, I find that US commuting zones exposed to a larger increases in the supply of college-educated immigrants became more specialized in AI-related occupations and that this increased specialization was due entirely to the employment of the foreign born. My results suggest that access to highly skilled workers constrains AI-related job growth and that immigration of the college-educated helps relax this constraint.
    JEL: J61 R12
    Date: 2021–04
  2. By: Ngoc Thi Minh Tran (University of Waikato and Vietnam National University); Michael P. Cameron (University of Waikato); Jacques Poot (University of Waikato and Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam)
    Abstract: This study examines whether the perception of difference in institutional quality between OECD destination countries and Vietnam, and the stated importance attached to such difference, influences Vietnamese migrants’ intention to return home. We use data from a web-based survey (N = 159) that we conducted in 2016. The countries covered capture about 90% of the Vietnamese diaspora in the world. We find, by means of weighted logistic regression analysis with a range of measures of institutional quality, that migrants who perceive a larger institutional quality difference are less likely to have the intention to return. However, there is considerable heterogeneity by gender. Women are, if they attach importance to institutional quality, particularly concerned about control of corruption, while the between-country difference in government effectiveness and regulatory quality matters to men. Concerns about a lack of voice & accountability; and about political instability & the presence of violence/terrorism deter return migration of both genders.
    Keywords: Return migration intention, institutional quality, perception, heterogeneity, Vietnam
    JEL: F22 O15
    Date: 2021–04
  3. By: María Esther Caballero; Brian Cadena; Brian K. Kovak
    Abstract: Using newly validated data on geographic migration networks, we study how labor demand shocks in the United States propagate across the border with Mexico. We show that the large exogenous decline in US employment brought about by the Great Recession affected demographic and economic outcomes in Mexican communities that were highly connected to the most affected markets in the US. In the Mexican locations with strong initial ties to the hardest hit US migrant destinations, return migration increased, emigration decreased, and remittance receipt declined. These changes significantly increased local employment and hours worked, but wages were unaffected. Investment in durable goods and children's education also slowed in these communities. These findings document the effects in Mexico when potential migrants lose access to a strong US labor market, providing insight regarding the potential impacts of stricter US migration restrictions.
    JEL: F22 J21 J23 J61 R23
    Date: 2021–04
  4. By: Duleep, Harriet; Liu, Xingfei; Regets, Mark
    Abstract: Two radically different descriptions of immigrant earnings trajectories in the U.S. have emerged. One asserts that immigrant men following the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act have low initial earnings and high earnings growth. Another asserts that post-1965 immigrants have low initial earnings and low earnings growth. We describe the methodological issues that create this divide and show that low earnings growth becomes high earnings growth when immigrants are followed from their initial years in the U.S., earnings growth is allowed to vary with entry earnings, and-when following cohorts instead of individuals-sample restrictions commonly used by labor economists are avoided.
    Keywords: Sample restrictions,immigrant earning growth,human capital investment,the U.S. census
    JEL: J1 J2 J3 C1
    Date: 2021
  5. By: Carolina Zuccotti (CONICET-UdeSA); Lucinda Platt (London School of Economics)
    Abstract: Despite lower social class origins, children of immigrants in the UK are now attaining high levels of education. However, they experience poorer labour market outcomes, often attributed in part to disadvantaged origins. This paper engages with this paradox. We posit two potential mechanisms for second-generation educational success—social class misallocation and immigrant advantage—and discuss how far these sources of advantage might be replicated in labour market outcomes. We substantiate our discussion with empirical analyses. Drawing on a unique longitudinal study of England and Wales spanning 40 years and encompassing one percent of the population, we present new evidence on the educational and occupational social mobility of men and women from four immigrant-origin groups and the white British majority. We demonstrate that ethnic minorities’ educational advantage is only partially reflected in the labour market. We reflect on the implications of our findings for research on ‘ethnic penalties’ and social mobility.
    Date: 2021–04
  6. By: Nina Boberg-Fazlić (University of Southern Denmark); Markus Lampe (WU Vienna University of Economics and Business, CEPR); Paul Sharp (University of Southern Denmark, CAGE, CEPR)
    Abstract: What determines emigration, and what impact does it have on the sending country? We consider the case of Denmark between 1868 and 1908, when a large number of people left for America. A significant fraction of these were tyender, a servant-like occupational group that was heavily discriminated against at the time, and who saw little opportunities for advancement at home. We exploit the fact that the Danish agrarian reforms between 1784 and 1807 had differential impacts on this class of landless laborers around the country, and use detailed parish-level data – police protocols of emigrants; population censuses and land registers – to show that areas with a more unequal distribution of land witnessed larger emigration. We then use income tax data, finding evidence of a positive income effect on the areas which saw most emigration.
    Keywords: Agrarian reform, Denmark, emigration, landless laborers
    JEL: J15 N33 O15
    Date: 2021–04
  7. By: José Joaquín Endara
    Abstract: Using nighttime lights data and the location of historically important markets for host populations in Southern Bangladesh, we assess the impact of the sudden refugee influx in August 2017 in the economic activity for the local community. Using a difference in difference estimation, we find that a sudden refugee influx produced an increase of 24% in economic activity in host markets within 5 kilometers of refugee camps. The results are robust to different specifications, and we include as controls the population around markets from the High-Resolution Settlement Layer by CIENSIN and Facebook and travel times through the local road networks. We argue that the refugee influx plus the humanitarian response are responsible for this effect. This paper contributes to the literature documenting the impacts of refugees on host communities.
    Keywords: Refugee impacts, Forced migration impacts, Nighttime lights, Difference in Difference, Rohingyas, Travel times, High Resolution Settlement Layer
    JEL: O15 O12 R23 D62
    Date: 2020–11
  8. By: Bredtmann, Julia
    Abstract: This paper investigates the effects of the 2015 mass inflow of refugees to Germany on electoral outcomes. Specifically, using unique data on refugee populations and their type of accommodation, I analyze how local exposure to refugees affects the outcomes of the March 2016 state election - an election that was characterized by a strong surge in the electoral success of right-wing parties. For identification, I exploit quasi-random variation in the allocation of refugees across municipalities. The results show that an increase in the population share of refugees increases the vote share of right-wing parties and decreases the vote share of the incumbent federal government parties. The electoral effects, however, are solely driven by refugees living in centralized accommodation, and particularly by municipalities that host reception centers for refugees. These findings have important implications for the design of public policies in handling future receptions of refugees, as they reveal that an earlier transfer of refugees from centralized to decentralized accommodation could attenuate a growing support for right-wing parties.
    Keywords: Immigration,refugees,political economy,voting
    JEL: D72 F22 J15 R23
    Date: 2020
  9. By: Krieger, Tim
    Abstract: This chapter explores the complex interaction between migration and terrorism. It proposes a 'terrorism-migration cycle' to investigate systematically this interaction at every stage of the migration process. Importantly, no stage of the migration process is independent of what happened on the previous stage, affecting how terrorism and migration interact. It is shown that terrorism may be a trigger of migration in the origin country, that only particular selections of migrants choose to leave a country, and that these migrants then sort into different destinations. The role of migration governance as a means to avoid the influx of potential terrorists is explored as well as the responses of destination-country populations and governments to the threat of imported terrorism. As yet other challenges, homegrown terrorism within immigrant communities and political violence directed against immigrants are discussed. Finally, it is argued that there are feedback effects of diasporas on the origin countries of immigrant communities.
    Date: 2020
  10. By: George J. Borjas; Anthony Edo
    Abstract: Immigrant supply shocks are typically expected to reduce the wage of comparable workers. Natives may respond to the lower wage by moving to markets that were not directly targeted by immigrants and where presumably the wage did not drop. This paper argues that the wage change observed in the targeted market depends not only on the size of the native response, but also on which natives choose to respond. A non-random response alters the composition of the sample of native workers, mechanically changing the average native wage in affected markets and biasing the estimated wage impact of immigration. We document the importance of this selection bias in the French labor market, where women accounted for a rapidly increasing share of the foreign-born workforce since 1976. The raw correlations suggest that the immigrant supply shock did not change the wage of French women, but led to a sizable decline in their employment rate. In contrast, immigration had little impact on the employment rate of men, but led to a sizable drop in the male wage. We show that the near-zero correlation between immigration and female wages arises partly because the native women who left the labor force had relatively low wages. Adjusting for the selection bias results in a similar wage elasticity for both French men and women (between -0.8 and -1.0).
    Keywords: Immigration;Wages;Selection;Labor Supply;Female Employment
    JEL: E24 F22 J21 J23
    Date: 2021–04
  11. By: Qingen Gai; Naijia Guo; Bingjing Li; Qinghua Shi; Xiaodong Zhu
    Abstract: We use a unique panel dataset and a policy experiment as an instrument to estimate the impact of policy-induced migration cost reductions on rural-to-urban migration and the associated increase in labor earnings for migrant workers in China. Our estimation shows that there exist both large migration costs and a large underlying productivity difference between rural agricultural and urban non-agricultural sectors in China. More than half of the observed labor earnings gap between the two sectors can be attributed to the underlying productivity difference, and less than half of the gap can be attributed to sorting of workers. We also structurally estimate a general equilibrium Roy model and use it to quantify the effects of reducing migration costs on the observed sectoral productivity difference, migration, and aggregate productivity. If we implement a hukou policy reform by setting the hukou liberalization index in all regions of China to the level of the most liberal region, the observed agricultural productivity gap would decrease by more than 30%, the migrant share would increase by about 9%, and the aggregate productivity would increase by 1.1%. In contrast, in a partial equilibrium in which the underlying productivity difference does not change with migration cost, the hukou policy reform would reduce the observed agricultural productivity gap by only 9%, the migrant share would increase by more than 50%, and the aggregate productivity would increase by 6.8%.
    Keywords: Migration cost; sorting; agricultural productivity gap; panel data; general equilibrium Roy model; China
    JEL: E24 J24 J61 O11 O15
    Date: 2021–04–17
  12. By: Roberto à lvarez; Miguel A. González; Jaime Ruiz-Tagle
    Abstract: This paper analyses migratory wage gaps in Chile taking into account differences in their characteristics in order to improve the comparability between groups. Using data from the Chilean National Socioeconomic Characterization Survey (CASEN) we employ a matching procedure developed by Nopo (2008) which allow to estimate a common support and the mean counterfactual wage for immigrants. It is found that immigrants tend to do better in labour markets, earning on average more than natives in both 2015 and 2017. The heterogeneity of the immigrant population is relevant as those from countries with high Afro-descendant or Hispanic population earn on average -16% than natives. Scarce time spent in the country is an important determinant of their insertion in local labour markets since it explain near 60% of the gap. In fact, more recent immigration from countries with high African/Hispanic population have tend to earn -26% less. This cannot be explained by time spent in the country alone, so some discrimination could be relevant. These claims are supported by the finding that immigrants of the same group, but with more than five years of residence, are still subject to occupational segregation
    Date: 2020–11

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