nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2022‒06‒20
fourteen papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
La Trobe University

  1. MOBILISE Data report: online surveys Wave 2 & Polish 2021 online survey By Ersanilli, Evelyn; van der Gaag, Marieke
  2. Where did they come from, where did they go? Bridging the Gaps in Migration Data By Samuel Standaert; Glenn Rayp
  3. The Causes and Consequences of Refugee Flows: A Contemporary Re-Analysis By Andrew Shaver; Benjamin Krick; Judy Blancaflor; Sarah Yein Ku; Xavier Liu
  4. Conflicts and natural disasters as drivers of forced migrations in a gravity-type approach By Luca Buzzanca; Caterina Conigliani; Valeria Costantini
  5. Climate change and migration decisions: A choice experiment from the Mekong Delta, Vietnam. By Tra Thi Trinh; Alistair Munro
  6. Immigration, labor markets and discrimination: Evidence from the venezuelan exodus in Perú By Andre Groeger; Gianmarco León-Ciliotta; Steven Stillman
  7. Maintaining mobility for those fleeing the war in Ukraine: From short-term protection to longer-term perspectives By Angenendt, Steffen; Biehler, Nadine; Bossong, Raphael; Kipp, David; Koch, Anne
  8. Intergenerational Spillovers of Integration Policies: Evidence from Finland’s Integration Plans By Pesola, Hanna; Sarvimäki, Matti
  9. Cities and their networks in EU-Africa migration policy: Are they really game changers? By Angenendt, Steffen; Biehler, Nadine; Kipp, David
  10. Improving livelihoods and reducing outmigration from the Northern Triangle in Central America: The potential role of cash transfers in expanded social safety nets By Diaz-Bonilla, Eugenio; Centurión, Miriam
  11. Grads on the Go: Measuring College-Specific Labor Markets for Graduates By Conzelmann, Johnathan G.; Hemelt, Steven W.; Hershbein, Brad J.; Martin, Shawn; Simon, Andew; Stange, Kevin
  12. Fertility and migration By Arianna Garofalo
  13. The Economic and Fiscal Effects on the United States from Reduced Numbers of Refugees and Asylum Seekers By Clemens, Michael A.
  14. One-way ticket to Rwanda ? Boris Johnson's cruel refugee tactic meets Kagame's shady immigration handling By Kohnert, Dirk

  1. By: Ersanilli, Evelyn; van der Gaag, Marieke
    Abstract: The MOBILISE project examines why some people respond to discontent by protesting, others by migrating while yet others stay immobile. It focuses Ukraine, Poland, Morocco and Argentina and migrants from these countries who live in Germany, the United Kingdom and Spain. The first part of this paper reports on the second wave of the panel survey among migrants from Argentina, Poland and Ukraine, and the national population of Argentina and Ukraine. Across target groups, 12 to 21 per cent of wave one respondents completed the second wave.. This is higher than might be expected in the absence of interviewer encouragement or material incentives. Analyses of the results suggest attrition bias on age, education and political interest, but these are modest in size. There is no evidence of attrition bias on Facebook use or migration aspiration. The second part of the paper presents the set-up and results of an online survey among migrants from and nationals in Poland in early 2021. The paper compares the results of the migrant surveys in 2019 and 2021 to find that the composition of the samples obtained are very similar, though the cost per respondent in 2021 was considerably higher. The latter is mostly likely a result of a higher ad budget. The online national sample is higher educated, more interested in politics, more active on Facebook, less often supportive of the ruling party and more often aspires to migrate than the face-to-face sample. This mostly replicates the pattern we found in earlier analyses of the Argentinian and Ukrainian online and face-to-face national surveys.
    Date: 2022–05–11
  2. By: Samuel Standaert; Glenn Rayp (-)
    Abstract: Many research analyses monitoring the patterns and evolution of international migration would benefit from high-frequency data on a global scale. However, the presently existing databases force a choice between the frequency of the data and the geographical scale. Yearly data exist but only for a small subset of countries, while most others are only covered every 5 to 10 years. To fill in the gaps in the coverage, the vast majority of databases use some imputation method. Gaps in the stock of migrants are often filled by combining information on migrants based on their country of birth with data based on nationality or using ‘model’ countries and propensity methods. Gaps in the data on the flow of migrants, on the other hand, are often filled by taking the difference in the stock, which the ’demographic accounting’ methods then adjust for demographic evolutions. This paper proposes a novel approach to estimating the most likely values of missing migration stocks and flows. Specifically, we use a Bayesian state-space model to combine the information from multiple datasets on both stocks and flows into a single estimate. Like the demographic accounting technique, the state-space model is built on the demographic relationship between migrant stocks, flows, births and deaths. The most crucial difference is that the state-space model combines the information from multiple databases, including those covering migrant stocks, net flows, and gross flows. The result of this analysis is a global, yearly, bilateral database on the stock of migrants according to their country of birth. This database contains close to 2.9 million observations on over 56,000 country pairs from 1960 to 2020, a ten-fold increase relative to the second-largest database. In addition, it also produces an estimate of the net flow of migrants. For a subset of countries –over 8,000 country pairs and half a million observations– we also have lower-bound estimates of the gross in- and outflow.
    Keywords: Bilateral migration data, Stock, Imputation, State-Space model
    Date: 2022–05
  3. By: Andrew Shaver (University of California, Merced); Benjamin Krick (Political Violence Lab); Judy Blancaflor (Political Violence Lab); Sarah Yein Ku (Political Violence Lab); Xavier Liu (Political Violence Lab)
    Abstract: The world faces a forcible displacement crisis. Across the world, tens of millions of individuals have been forced from their homes and across international boundaries. The causes and consequences of refugee flows are, therefore, the subjects of significant social science inquiry. Unfortunately, historical lack of reliable data on actual refugee flows has significantly limited empirical inferences on these topics. Using data newly released by the United Nations on annual dyadic flows, we replicate twenty-seven studies published in economics and political science journals on the causes and consequences of these flows. We extend fourteen of these. We find that some of the causes of flows described in the literature are less substantively and/or statistically significant than previously reported while others are more. Generally, with some exceptions, we find that previously reported effects of refugees on security conditions are attenuated, suggesting that the literature’s predominant focus on refugees as sources of violent instability may be overstated.
    Keywords: Refugees; Asylum Seekers; Terrorism; Civil War
    JEL: D74 F22 H56
    Date: 2022–04
  4. By: Luca Buzzanca; Caterina Conigliani; Valeria Costantini
    Abstract: The literature identifies three main drivers for forced migration, namely conflict, food nsecurity, and natural and man-made disasters, although finds no empirical consensus on the association between climate change and migrations. Aim of this study is to identify the different push and pull factors of forced migration in different regions of the world by means of gravity-type models. Particular attention is devoted to determining the effects of climatic factors and conflicts, while controlling for the economic, political and social relationship between the origin and the destination countries. We model both total forced migration, that includes refugees, asylum seekers, internal displacements, and returnees, and cross-border forced migrations. Finally, we consider a full panel data analysis and estimate both fixed effects and random effects model specifications. The former offers interesting insights when looking at the most significant country pair fixed effects, that after controlling for all the different drivers, represents the migration routes whose intrinsic characteristics are most relevant for explaining forced migrations. The latter, on the other hand, allows estimating also the effect of time-constant bilateral predictors such as the distance between countries or the fact that they share a common language or have a colonial relation.
    Keywords: Forced migration; IDPs; Conflicts; Natural disasters; Climate change; Gravity models
    JEL: C23 D74 F22 K37 K38 O15 Q54
    Date: 2022–05
  5. By: Tra Thi Trinh (National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies, Tokyo, Japan); Alistair Munro (National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies, Tokyo, Japan)
    Abstract: Forecasting the impact of climate change on migration is difficult, given widespread reliance on historical data and limited exposure to actual climate change amongst target populations. This study takes a different approach, developing a new methodology that employs a choice experiment to examine intentions to migrate among farmers living in the Vietnamese Mekong Delta, one of the areas in the world most significantly affected by climate change. The respondents are asked to make migration choices for scenarios constructed using six attributes: drought intensity, flood frequency, income change from migration, migration networks, neighbors’ choices, and crop choice restriction. The results suggest that increasing the intensity/frequency of drought/flood increases the likelihood of migration; the effects are stronger for individuals with prior experience of climate change. Furthermore, the contribution of network attribute is gendered and dependent on migration experience. Finally, crop choice restriction, such as those widely employed by the Vietnamese government to control rice planting, may trigger a higher probability of migration. These findings provide insights into the debate on climate change-migration nexus in rural and lowland areas that are seriously affected by climate change. Furthermore, extensive choice experiment data on migration preferences under a diverse range of climate variabilities facilitates projections of environmentally induced migration.
    Keywords: Climate change; migration; choice experiment; drought and saline intrusion; flood; Vietnam; Mekong Rivers
  6. By: Andre Groeger; Gianmarco León-Ciliotta; Steven Stillman
    Abstract: Venezuela is currently experiencing the biggest crisis in its recent history. This has led more than 5.6 million Venezuelans to emigrate, one million of those to Peru, which amounted to an increase of over 2 percent in the Peruvian population. Venezuelan immigrants in Peru are relatively similar in cultural terms, but, on average, more skilled than Peruvians. In this paper, we first examine Venezuelans'perceptions about being discriminated against in Peru. Using an instrumental variable strategy, we document a causal relationship between the level of employment in the informal sector - where most immigrants are employed - and reports of discrimination. We then study the impact of Venezuelan migration on local's labor market outcomes, reported crime rates and attitudes using a variety of data sources. We find that inflows of Venezuelans to particular locations led to increased employment and income among locals, decreased reported crime, and improved reported community quality. We conduct a heterogeneity analysis to identify the mechanisms behind these labor market effects and discuss the implications for Peruvian immigration policy.
    Keywords: immigration, forced migration, discrimination, labor markets, Peru, Venezuela
    JEL: F22 J15 O15 R23
    Date: 2022–05
  7. By: Angenendt, Steffen; Biehler, Nadine; Bossong, Raphael; Kipp, David; Koch, Anne
    Abstract: Europe is currently experiencing the largest refugee crisis since World War II. The European Union (EU) has activated the Temporary Protection Directive for the first time. Accordingly, refugees from Ukraine can freely choose where to go, and they have the right to work and receive social benefits in their chosen host country. Even if the number of refugees appears overwhelming, the EU should stick to this approach and build on refugees' social ties and the strong engagement by civil society. A mandatory EU-wide relocation scheme cannot and should not be advanced against the will of many member states and affected refugees. The forced displace­ment from Ukraine can be managed if self-relocation is actively supported across the entire Schengen zone, if the EU provides sufficient solidarity and financial support for reception and integration measures, and if member states start preparing for sustainable long-term stays from the outset.
    Date: 2022
  8. By: Pesola, Hanna (VATT, Helsinki); Sarvimäki, Matti (Aalto University)
    Abstract: This paper shows that an integration policy aimed at unemployed adult immigrants generated positive spillovers for their children. Our research design builds on a discontinuity in the phase-in-rule of Finland’s 1999 reform that introduced integration plans—a new approach for allocating unemployed immigrants to active labor market policies. We find that parents’ integration plans substantially improved their children’s grades and educational attainment and reduced their time out of employment, education, or training. Our examination of potential mechanisms suggests that integration plans increased parents’ earnings, employment and exposure to native colleagues and pushed their children to better schools.
    Keywords: immigrants, integration policy, intergenerational effects
    JEL: J61 J68 J13 H53
    Date: 2022–05
  9. By: Angenendt, Steffen; Biehler, Nadine; Kipp, David
    Abstract: The international debate on migration policy increasingly views cities as game changers since cities have to find rapid, efficient, and lasting solutions to problems relating to forced displacement and migration. However, this assessment also has its critics. From a European perspective, cooperating with African cities is important because migration from Africa is expected to rise in the short and medium term. From an African perspective, there is a wish to extend the potential for legal migration and for intercontinental mobility. Existing cooperation between African and European cities shows that the actors involved pursue very different objectives. Their potential for participation is limited but simultaneously highly dependent on political will and context. In order to make use of cities' potential for cooperation, particularly in shaping legal migration, cooperation instruments must be designed in such a way as to give cities adequate funding and sufficient powers. Divisions between urban and rural areas should not be deepened, and social conflicts should not be exacerbated. Public funds should be used preferentially to support existing networks, especially those of small and medium-sized cities; such cities should be involved above all in the shaping of labour mobility and migration and in the reception of refugees. Philanthropic funding of cities and city networks can also be helpful in harnessing the potential of municipal actors.
    Date: 2021
  10. By: Diaz-Bonilla, Eugenio; Centurión, Miriam
    Abstract: In 2019 almost 45 million immigrants lived in the United States, or about 13.7% of the total population, approaching the record high of 14.8% in 1890. Of that total, about 77% are lawful residents (either nat-uralized, permanent residents, or temporary residents), and the difference (about 23% or 11 million per-sons) are illegal immigrants. Both in the case of legal and illegal immigrants, the largest percentage is from Mexico (24% of the legal immigrants and somewhat less than 50% of the illegal ones, but those percentages have been declining since the mid-2000s). About 20% of the illegal immigration living in the US in 2017 came from Central America, principally El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala (Ameri-can Immigration Council, 2021 and Passel and D’Vera Cohn, 2019). Overall, these three countries are the origin of about 3.3 million immigrants (legal and illegal) in the US in 2019 (Babich and Batalova, 2021).
    Keywords: LATIN AMERICA, CENTRAL AMERICA, NORTH AMERICA, migration, livelihoods, social welfare, social safety nets, cash transfers
    Date: 2022
  11. By: Conzelmann, Johnathan G. (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill); Hemelt, Steven W. (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill); Hershbein, Brad J. (Upjohn Institute for Employment Research); Martin, Shawn (University of Michigan); Simon, Andew (University of Michigan); Stange, Kevin (University of Michigan)
    Abstract: This paper introduces a new measure of the labor markets served by colleges and universities across the United States. About 50 percent of recent college graduates are living and working in the metro area nearest the institution they attended, with this figure climbing to 67 percent in-state. The geographic dispersion of alumni is more than twice as great for highly selective 4-year institutions as for 2-year institutions. However, more than one-quarter of 2-year institutions disperse alumni more diversely than the average public 4-year institution. In one application of these data, we find that the average strength of the labor market to which a college sends its graduates predicts college-specific intergenerational economic mobility. In a second application, we quantify the extent of "brain drain" across areas and illustrate the importance of considering migration patterns of college graduates when estimating the social return on public investment in higher education.
    Keywords: colleges, labor markets, postsecondary education, economic mobility
    JEL: I23 I25 J21 J40 J61
    Date: 2022–05
  12. By: Arianna Garofalo (Universitat de Barcelona)
    Abstract: Over the past three decades, the drop in fertility rates has been accompanied by high rates of migration in several developing countries. We argue that migration affects fertility negatively in the countries of origin. To analyze the effect of migration we build a fertility choice model, based on De La Croix (2014), with endogenous migration decisions. In this framework, when a member of the household migrates abroad, income increases due to remittances but at the same time, individuals left at home face a much higher opportunity cost time. This means that household members have less time to devote to taking care of the children and the consequence is a decrease in fertility. We calibrate the model to match the migration rates and to quantify the effect of migration on the fertility rate in those countries. To this end, we first show that the model can replicate the high rate of migrations in several developing countries. Then we perform two counterfactual exercises to address the effect of our mechanism. In the first exercise, we keep the migration constant as in the benchmark model while we give a higher value to the time cost of migration. The result is an increase in fertility. In the second exercise, we quantify how the differences in the time cost of migration affect the differences in fertility. We found that the time cost of migration accounts for 53% of the fall in the fertility of the developing countries in our sample between 1990 and 2017.
    Keywords: Fertility, migration, remittances.
    JEL: O11 J11 F22 F24
    Date: 2022
  13. By: Clemens, Michael A. (Center for Global Development)
    Abstract: International migrants who seek protection also participate in the economy. Thus the policy of the United States to drastically reduce refugee and asylum-seeker arrivals from 2017 to 2020 might have substantial and ongoing economic consequences. This paper places conservative bounds on those effects by critically reviewing the research literature. It goes beyond prior estimates by including ripple effects beyond the wages earned or taxes paid directly by migrants. The sharp reduction in U.S. refugee admissions starting in 2017 costs the overall U.S. economy today over $9.1 billion per year ($30,962 per missing refugee per year, on average) and costs public coffers at all levels of government over $2.0 billion per year ($6,844 per missing refugee per year, on average) net of public expenses. Large reductions in the presence of asylum seekers during the same period likewise carry ongoing costs in the billions of dollars per year. These estimates imply that barriers to migrants seeking protection, beyond humanitarian policy concerns, carry substantial economic costs.
    Keywords: immigration, immigrant, migrant, refugee, asylum, asylee, costs, wages, employment, labor, market, fiscal, public, coffers, welfare, benefits, GDP, growth
    JEL: F62 H60 J61
    Date: 2022–05
  14. By: Kohnert, Dirk
    Abstract: Boris Johnson’s populist policy against immigrants and asylum seekers, dumped in detention camps in Rwanda, may not succeed because of legal constraints. Yet, his political agenda will probably work nevertheless, given the growing xenophobia among his electorate. Against expert advice, Home Secretary Priti Patel promised the autocratic ruler in Kigali, Paul Kagame, responsible among others for retribution killings of his army (RPF), to transfer an initial £120m to deter the migrants and to make them 'settle and thrive' in Rwanda. However, London would have to pay much more in the proposed 'economic transformation and integration fund' for the current cost. It is highly unlikely that Rwanda will be able to cope with additional immigrants as it is already struggling to accommodate its own more than 130,000 refugees. Moreover, in the past, also Denmark and Israel had tried in vain to execute similar policies to get rid of undesirable migrants and settle them in Rwanda and Uganda. Johnson's scheme reminded Britain's foremost historian of Nazi Germany, Sir Richard Evans, of Hitler's ploy to deport Jews to Madagascar. Thus, policies purported to aim at 'migration control' may not control migration, but reconfigure potential host societies along ethnic, racial, linguistic, and xenophobe lines. The burden of colonial heritage persists in attempts to reject 'strangers' through populist politics, culture and public discourse. This policy was revived and adjusted in the post-Brexit era, as exemplified by the preferential treatment given to Ukrainian migrants. Racism works best when it's overtly selective. Treating some migrants as “worthy” and others as “undeserving” avoids accusations of racism. It allows racist voters to be fooled into believing that they are personally virtuous while secretly or unconsciously indulging their basest instincts.
    Keywords: United Kingdom, Rwanda, immigration, refugees, African migration to UK, post-colonialism, peace-building, identity politics, nationalism, xenophobia, discrimination, African poverty, famine, Sub-Saharan Africa, human rights, Boris Johnson, Paul Kagame
    JEL: E24 E26 E61 F22 F24 F35 F52 F54 F66 J46 J61 J71 K37 N17 N37 N47 N97 P16 Z13
    Date: 2022–05–14

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