nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2022‒03‒07
twelve papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
La Trobe University

  1. Taxing mobile and overconfident top earners By Andreas HAUFLER; Yukihiro NISHIMURA
  2. Refugees without Assistance: English-Language Attainment and Economic Outcomes in the Early Twentieth Century By Abramitzky, Ran; Boustan, Leah; Catron, Peter; Connor, Dylan; Voigt, Rob
  3. Canada’s Private Sponsorship Model Represents a Complementary Pathway for Refugee Resettlement By Van Haren, Ian
  4. Who seeks asylum in Germany? By Lucas Guichard
  5. Is there a rural penalty in language acquisition? Evidence from Germany’s refugee allocation policy By Khalil, Samir; Tjaden, Jasper; Kohler, Ulrich
  6. Modelling trade policy scenarios: Macroeconomic and trade effects of restrictions in cross border labour mobility By Donal Smith; Przemyslaw Kowalski; Frank van Tongeren
  7. Emigration state: race, citizenship and settler imperialism in modern British history, c. 1850-1972 By Foks, Freddy
  8. International migration decisions and costly information acquisition By Simone Bertoli; Jesús FernÁndez-Huertas Moraga; Lucas Guichard
  9. Researching migrant entrepreneurship communities: a reflection through collaborative (auto)ethnographies By Natalia Vershinina; Allan Discua Cruz
  10. Immigration, Wages and Employment under Informal Labor Markets By Delgado-Prieto, Lukas
  11. Is the grass really greener? Migrants' improvements in local labor market conditions and financial health By Stephan Whitaker
  12. Origins and consequences of long ties in social networks By Jahani, Eaman; Fraiberger, Samuel P.; Bailey, Michael; Eckles, Dean

  1. By: Andreas HAUFLER; Yukihiro NISHIMURA (Graduate School of Economics, Osaka University)
    Abstract: We set up a simple model of tax competition for mobile, highly-skilled and overconfident managers. Firms endogenously choose the compensation scheme for managers, which consists of a fixed wage and a bonus payment in the high state. Managers are overconfident about the probability of the high state and hence of receiving the bonus, whereas firms and governments are not. When governments maximize tax revenues, we show that overconfidence unambiguously reduces the bonus tax rate that governments set in the non-cooperative tax equilibrium, while increasing tax revenues. When the government objective incorporates the welfare of resident managers, however, bonus taxes also serve a corrective role and may rise in equilibrium when overconfidence is increased.
    Keywords: Overconfidence, bonus taxes, tax competition, migration
    JEL: H20 H87 G28
  2. By: Abramitzky, Ran; Boustan, Leah; Catron, Peter; Connor, Dylan; Voigt, Rob
    Abstract: The United States has admitted more than 3 million refugees since 1980 through official refugee resettlement programs that provide temporary assistance. Scholars have highlighted the success of refugee groups to show the positive impact of governmental programs on assimilation and integration. In the past, however, refugees arrived without formal selection processes or federal support. We examine the integration of historical refugees using a large archive of recorded oral history interviews to understand linguistic attainment and economic outcomes of migrants who arrived before 1940. Using detailed measures of vocabulary, syntax and accented speech, we find that refugee migrants achieved higher levels of English proficiency than did economic migrants, a finding that holds even when comparing migrants from the same country of origin or religious group. This study improves on previous research of immigrant language acquisition, which typically rely on self-reported measures of fluency, and on studies of refugees, which typically assign refugee status based on country-of-birth alone. Our findings are consistent with the hypothesis that refugees, being unable to immediately return to their origin country, may have had greater incentive to learn or be exposed to English, which increased their linguistic attainment. Our results provide an optimistic historical precedent for the incorporation of refugees into American society.
    Date: 2021–12–14
  3. By: Van Haren, Ian
    Abstract: This article explains who can be sponsored in Canada’s Privately Sponsored Refugee (PSR) program, with a focus on how different types of sponsorship applications (including those supported by a Sponsorship Agreement Holder, Group of Five, or Community Sponsor) are assessed by government officials before sent overseas for processing. The article presents statistics on the number of applications approved in each PSR stream in the last ten years. The article also discusses a brief history of refugee resettlement to Canada and discusses how the selection process for refugees impacts integration outcomes, particularly when comparing refugees selected by the UNHCR versus those selected by Canadian sponsors.
    Date: 2021–07–09
  4. By: Lucas Guichard (CERDI - Centre d'Études et de Recherches sur le Développement International - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - UCA - Université Clermont Auvergne)
    Abstract: European countries experienced a short-lived surge in the arrival of asylum seekers from 2014 to 2016. The size, diversity, and potential consequences of the large number of asylum seekers makes it important to identify the characteristics of the newcomers, which are likely to affect the socioeconomic outcomes of the stayers in the origin country and of the natives at destination.
    Abstract: Entre 2014 et 2016, les pays européens ont connu une brève et spectaculaire arrivée de demandeurs d'asile. La taille, la diversité et les conséquences potentielles de l'arrivée des demandeurs d'asile impliquent qu'il est important d'identifier les caractéristiques des nouveaux arrivants, susceptibles d'affecter les conditions socio-économiques des personnes qui restent dans le pays d'origine et des natifs habitant le pays de destination.
    Keywords: Individual-level data,Education,Selection,Refugee
    Date: 2020–05
  5. By: Khalil, Samir; Tjaden, Jasper; Kohler, Ulrich
    Abstract: Emerging evidence has highlighted the important role of local contexts on integration trajectories of asylum seekers and refugees. Germany’s policy of randomly allocating asylum seekers across Germany may advantage some and disadvantage others in terms of opportunities for equal participation in society. This study explores the question whether asylum seekers that have been allocated to rural areas experience disadvantages in terms of language acquisition compared to those allocated to urban areas. We derive testable assumptions using a Directed Acyclic Graph (DAG) which are then tested using large-N survey data (IAB-BAMF-SOEP refugee survey). We find that living in a rural area has no negative total effect on language skills. Further the findings suggest that the ‘null effect’ is the result of two processes which offset each other: while asylum seekers in rural areas have slightly lower access for formal, federally organized language courses, they have more regular exposure to German speakers.
    Date: 2022–01–13
  6. By: Donal Smith; Przemyslaw Kowalski; Frank van Tongeren
    Abstract: COVID-19 has drawn renewed attention to the economic importance of cross border mobility. Frictions in cross border mobility of labour can substantially impact the economy and international trade, by causing a long-term decrease in net migration that would alter the labour supply in many economies. To capture these macro-economic and trade effects, a global macroeconomic model (NiGEM) and a general equilibrium trade model (METRO) were used to simulate a stylised scenario equivalent to a 20% reduction in net-migration accumulated over the past ten years for all economies and regions. In OECD countries, this would translate into a reduction of the overall labour supply, and this shock would shift some economic activity towards non-OECD countries. At the sectoral level, exports of labour intensive manufacturing activities in OECD countries would contract, with electronics (13% of the total reduction of exports in the long term), automobiles (12%) and pharmaceuticals (9%) among the most affected.
    Keywords: Computable general equilibrium model, International labour mobility, International trade, METRO model, NIGEM macroeconometric model, Sectoral economic effects
    JEL: F22 F47 C63 E10 N10
    Date: 2022–02–23
  7. By: Foks, Freddy
    Abstract: What role did migration play in the making of modern Britain? We now have a good sense of the way ethnicity, class, religion and gender structured immigrants’ experience and what impact they had on Britain’s culture, society and economy. But as Nancy Green pointed out almost two decades ago, scholars of migration must focus on exit as well as entry. Such a call to study ‘the politics of exit’ is especially apposite in the case of the UK. For in every decade between 1850 and 1980 (with the exception of the 1930s), the UK experienced net emigration year on year. This article analyses this outflow of migrants to give a new account of the UK as an 'emigration state'. With this concept in mind, this paper offers a new account of the formation of migration policy in the UK and seeks to transform our sense of the chronological and geographical boundaries of modern Britain.
    Date: 2021–12–16
  8. By: Simone Bertoli (CERDI - Centre d'Études et de Recherches sur le Développement International - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - UCA - Université Clermont Auvergne); Jesús FernÁndez-Huertas Moraga; Lucas Guichard
    Abstract: International migration decisions and costly information acquisition Migrants are confronted with the uncertainty about the returns that the might enjoy in the various destinations, and they can decide to gather information in order to reduce this uncertainty. Including costly information acquisition in the location-choice problem that migrants face allows us to refine our understanding of the pro-cyclical character of international migration flows. Read in french(/toutes-les-actualites/zoom-sur-la-recherche/migrations-internationales-et-acquisition-dinformations-218587.kjsp?RH=1505391225734#/admin) The decision about whether and where to migrate is portrayed as an investment decision that reflects a
    Abstract: Face à l'incertitude concernant les retours qu'ils pourraient obtenir dans les différents pays d'accueil, les migrants peuvent choisir de collecter des informations pour réduire cette incertitude. La prise en compte de la possibilité d'acquérir des informations dans un modèle qui décrit le choix de la destination des migrants nous permet de peaufiner notre analyse du caractère pro-cyclique des flux migratoires internationaux.
    Keywords: Migration internationale
    Date: 2020–07
  9. By: Natalia Vershinina (Audencia Business School); Allan Discua Cruz
    Abstract: In this paper we offer a scholarly reflection about the value of the ethnographic methods for studying migrant entrepreneurship, specifically through the lens of our own migration experiences. Our positionalities and subjectivities embedded in being migrants and researchers offer this opportunity for the in-depth reflection. Specifically, we examine what varieties of ethnographic research methods offer as well as what limitations these methods bring if adopted within migrant entrepreneurship research. We argue that specific ethnographic practice-based methods have the capacity to reveal the rich social context of migrant entrepreneurship, which can supplement the theoretical perspectives. We adopt two illustrations to highlight the relevance of ethnographic methodologies to studying migrant entrepreneurship. The contribution this study offers is in suggesting new methods that allow for fresh understanding of the complex narratives of migration dynamics to emerge. This study shows how narratives intertwine with migrants' stories of entrepreneurship and offers guidance for future research.
    Keywords: migrant entrepreneurship,autoethnography,ethnography,reflexivity,researcher positionality,context
    Date: 2021
  10. By: Delgado-Prieto, Lukas
    Abstract: This paper studies the labor market impacts of a massive inflow of Venezuelans in Colombia. By comparing areas that received different shares of migrants, I find a negative effect on wages and on local employment for natives. The negative wage effect is driven by a large drop of wages in the informal sector, where migrants are mostly employed, while the negative employment effect is driven by a reduction of employment in the formal sector, where the minimum wage is binding. To explain these results, I develop a model in which firms hire formal and informal workers with different costs. If these workers have a high degree of substitutability, and wages for formal workers are rigid, firms reallocate formal to informal employment as a response to lower informal wages. In settings with informal labor markets migration can therefore lead to asymmetric employment and wage effects across the informal and formal sectors.
    Date: 2021–09–26
  11. By: Stephan Whitaker
    Abstract: This paper documents several facts about internal migrants in the US that underlie substantial areas of economic research and policy making, but are rarely directly published. Using a large-sample, 23-year panel, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York/Equifax Consumer Credit Panel, I estimate the distribution of changes in local labor market conditions experienced by people who move to a different labor market. Net migration favors local labor markets with lower unemployment and faster job growth, but gross flows toward weaker labor markets are almost as large as the flows toward stronger labor markets. During recessions, net flows temporarily favor weaker labor markets. Migrants frequently choose destinations with similar labor market conditions rather than moving to the markets with the highest growth or lowest unemployment at the time of their move. A hypothesis that personal financial health improves for people moving to tight local labor markets (or deteriorates for migrants to slack labor markets) is only partially supported in the data. Migrants to low-unemployment and high-employment growth regions have higher homeownership rates after they move. However, there are not clear advantages or disadvantages for migrants to strong or weak labor market regions as measured by credit scores, consumption, bankruptcy, or foreclosure.
    Keywords: Internal migration; local labor market conditions; unemployment; employment growth; consumer credit; financial health
    JEL: J61 E24 R11 D14
    Date: 2022–02–22
  12. By: Jahani, Eaman; Fraiberger, Samuel P.; Bailey, Michael; Eckles, Dean
    Abstract: Social networks play a predominant role in determining how information spreads between individuals. Previous works suggest that long ties, which connect people who do not share any mutual contact, provide access to valuable information on economic opportunities. However, no population-scale study has determined how long ties relate to economic outcomes and how such ties are formed. Using a novel dataset from Facebook, we reconstruct the network of interactions between users and we uncover a strong relationship between the share of long ties and economic outcomes at the local level in the United States and in Mexico. Administrative units with a higher proportion of long ties have higher incomes, higher economic mobility, lower unemployment rates and higher wealth, even after adjusting for potential confounders of these outcomes. In contrast to the weak tie theory, we find that having stronger long ties is associated with better economic outcomes. Furthermore, we discover that users with a higher proportion of long ties are more likely to have migrated between US states, to have transferred to a different high school, and to have attended college outside of their home state. Taken together, these results suggest that long ties contribute to economic prosperity and highlight the role played by disruptive life events in the formation of these ties.
    Date: 2022–01–08

This nep-mig issue is ©2022 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.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.