nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2022‒11‒21
eight papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura
La Trobe University

  1. Returning to a Land of Opportunity? Effects of Land Restitution in Colombia By Margaryta Klymak
  2. Cultural Policies for Migrant Inclusion: A Survey By Venturini, Alessandra; Mosso, Cristina; Ricci, Andrea
  3. The myth of the misinformed migrant? Survey insights from Nigeria's irregular migration epicenter By Beber, Bernd; Scacco, Alexandra
  4. The Effect of Unemployment on Interregional Migration in the Netherlands By Cindy Biesenbeek
  5. The Effects of Admitting Immigrants: A Look at Japan’s School and Pension Systems By Jinno, Masatoshi; Yasuoka, Masaya
  6. Refugee policy and selective implementation of the comprehensive refugee response framework in Kenya By Jacobi, Milan; Jaji, Rose
  7. Migrants, Markets and Mayors Rising above the Employment Challenge in Africa’s Secondary Cities – Key Insights By Christiaensen, Luc; Lozano Gracia, Nancy
  8. Analyzing Filipino Migrant Workers' Access to Social Protection By Tabuga, Aubrey D.; Mondez, Maria Blesila D.; Vargas, Anna Rita P.

  1. By: Margaryta Klymak
    Abstract: Millions of people are internally displaced by wars and conflicts with wide-ranging adverse social and economic consequences. Yet, we still know very little about how they fare upon return to their homes. Colombia’s 50-year internal armed conflict resulted in the world’s highest number of internally displaced people. In this paper, we study the effects of a recently implemented law allowing displaced Colombians to apply to receive land restitution. Although everyone could apply for restitution immediately, the implementation of claims happened in a phased manner. Using agricultural census data coupled with geospatial location of formal land restitution, and individual level information on applications, we shed light on the effect of land restitution on three sets of outcomes: social integration, labour investments and market integration. Our results suggest restituted households are integrating into the community - they are more likely to be a member of an association, more likely to partake in reciprocal farm work and sell their produce. We also find evidence that in the short run, unlike the findings in the literature relating to land formalisation, restituted households are not more likely to hire permanent workers but instead increase the use of day workers and household members on their land.
    Keywords: forced displacement; land restitution; conflict; Colombia
    JEL: D13 Q15 O12
    Date: 2022
  2. By: Venturini, Alessandra; Mosso, Cristina; Ricci, Andrea (University of Turin)
    Abstract: Integration of migrants is a priority in destination countries, but high unemployment and low wages and a strong segmentation still dominate the picture. The linguistic distance and the cultural distance are at the basis of the lack of soft skills which limit their inclusion. Cultural policies which have been considered redundant, are instead a priority for their positive effects on individuals and, in particular, on the foreigners. The present survey reviews the extensive research in the field using choir participation as pivotal activity. The results are measured with physiological and psychological indicators to understand the increase in self-esteem, self-efficacy and social inclusion which are needed for migrants to grasp the social capital of destination countries needed for integration. Even if the empirical studies are not scientifically convincing, i.e. small samples, no randomization, the numerosity and variety persuades about the positive effect.
    Date: 2022–09
  3. By: Beber, Bernd; Scacco, Alexandra
    Abstract: Policy projections and recent research suggest that large numbers of irregular migrants from sub-Saharan Africa will continue to attempt to make their way to Europe over the next few decades. In response, European countries have made and continue to make significant investments in information campaigns designed to discourage irregular African migration. Despite the ubiquity of these campaigns, we know relatively little about potential migrants' prior knowledge and beliefs. To what extent are potential migrants actually misinformed about the migration journey and destination countries? We bring representative survey data collected in Benin City, Nigeria - a center of irregular migration - to bear on this question. Three key insights emerge. First, potential migrants are better informed about destination contexts than is commonly assumed, and if anything appear to underestimate the economic benefits of life in Europe. Second, they are relatively less well informed about specific risks and other features of the irregular migration journey. Third, we find evidence of optimism bias. Respondents are generally hopeful when asked about Nigerian irregular migrants' prospects of being able to reach and stay in Europe, but they are especially optimistic when asked about their own chances. Taken together, these findings suggest that existing migration-related information campaigns, and with them a central component of migration policies in countries across the Global North, rest on shaky foundations. Most problematically, our study suggests that campaigns risk becoming misinformation campaigns, particularly when they suggest to potential migrants that they are overestimating the benefits of living in Europe.
    Keywords: Migration,information campaigns,beliefs,Nigeria
    JEL: F22 O15 D83 D91
    Date: 2022
  4. By: Cindy Biesenbeek
    Abstract: Using administrative data between 2006 and 2020, I analyze interregional migration in the Netherlands. In theory, individuals move out of regions with high unemployment rates, but most empirical research does not strongly support this prediction. Likewise, I only ï¬ nd a small effect of regional unemployment on interregional migration. Furthermore, I ï¬ nd that the unemployed are more mobile during the ï¬ rst three months of unemployment. In addition, my results suggest that renters in the private sector are much more mobile than homeowners or renters in the social housing sector. Finally, I ï¬ nd that commuters are much more likely to migrate, despite good infrastructure and relative short distances in The Netherlands.
    Keywords: Migration; Regional Labor Markets; Unemployment; Commuting; Duration; Cox; Nether-lands
    JEL: J61 R23
    Date: 2022–10
  5. By: Jinno, Masatoshi; Yasuoka, Masaya
    Abstract: This paper investigates the effects of admitting immigrants to Japan on the welfare of native Japanese residents. The paper considers the imperfect substitutability between native and immigrant laborers in line with the pension and education systems. It is argued that immigration may have indirect negative effects, for example, imposing the additional burden of educating immigrant children who require additional support to master the Japanese culture, customs, and language. This research uses numerical data analysis of Japan. The findings indicate that admitting immigrants, even when they are not perfectly complementary, might increase the wage level and the utility of the natives. There are also direct implications on the type of pension system that is available for natives and immigrants. This study recommends that the defined replacement rate pension system is preferable for natives when there is a relatively substitutable relationship between natives and immigrants.
    Keywords: Immigrants, Burden of schooling, Pension, Substitutability, Complementarity.
    JEL: H52 H55 J61
    Date: 2022–10–27
  6. By: Jacobi, Milan; Jaji, Rose
    Abstract: Kenya's refugee policy has morphed over time due to factors that include security threats, regional geo-politics and strategic interests. This policy brief addresses the relevance of national and regional geo-strategic interests for refugee policy in Kenya. It provides a historical overview of refugee policy in the country, highlighting the factors that account for policy fluctuations, contradictions and differential treatment of refugees hosted in Kenya, which is one of the pilot countries for the implementation of the Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework (CRRF). For policy-makers seeking to localise international refugee governance frameworks, it is important to situate frameworks such as the CRRF within the relevant national contexts because refugee hosting does not take place in a political vacuum or an ahistorical context (Jaji, 2022). Kenya is an interesting case study because the contradictions in its refugee policy take a bifurcated approach, in which it has approved the implementation of the CRRF's main objective to promote refugees' self-reliance in northwestern Kenya, where it hosts the mainly South Sudanese refugees in Kakuma camp and simultaneously put on hold the implementation of the same in the north-east in Dadaab camp, which predominantly hosts Somali refugees. Over the years, the government of Kenya has threatened to close the two camps, the most recent threat being in April 2021, when it announced that it wanted UNHCR to repatriate refugees within 14 days. Although the implementation of KISEDP made closure of Kakuma refugee camp a logical course of action, the non-implementation of GISEDP in Garissa County raised concern in humanitarian circles regarding the fate of Somali refugees if Dadaab camp were to be closed without an integrated settlement similar to Kalobeyei. The geo-political context accounts for the policy discrepancies and ambivalence evident in how the Kenyan government has implemented the CRRF in Turkana County but not in Garissa. The complex relations between Kenya and Somalia are salient for the implementation of the CRRF in Garissa County, where the majority of Somali refugees in Kenya are hosted. Kenya and Somalia are locked in a maritime border dispute, which cannot be overlooked in trying to understand Kenya's policy towards Somali refugees. The government of Kenya views Somalis as a threat to national security and blames them for the terrorist attacks in the country. Based on an analysis of these factors, we offer the following recommendations: International processes such as the CRRF should be sensitive to the security and geo-political interests of host countries. Security issues between Kenya and Somalia have a uniquely negative impact on Somali refugees in Kenya, which makes humanitarian operations harder to implement in Garissa County. UNHCR and its partner organisations and funders should: encourage Kenya to implement GISEDP and provide sustained financial contributions under burden-sharing, which would provide more incentives for Kenya to remain committed to implementing the CRRF. clearly present the economic benefits of implementing the CRRF in terms of promoting self-reliance not only for the refugees, but also for Kenyans in both Turkana and Garissa counties. maintain support for Kenya's efforts to engender selfreliance for refugees in north-western Kenya and commend the country for implementing the CRRF under KISEDP while also remaining aware of Kenya's securitisation of Somali refugees in north-eastern Kenya. consider the insights from Kenya in addressing contextual issues in other host countries that have agreed to implement the CRRF.
    Keywords: CRRF implementation,refugee policy,discrepancies,national security,terrorism,geo-strategic interests,refugee camps,Kenya,Somalia,refugee law
    Date: 2022
  7. By: Christiaensen, Luc; Lozano Gracia, Nancy
    Abstract: In our rapidly urbanizing world, mayors often see migrants as a burden to their city’s labor market and a threat to its development. Drawing on national household surveys and four secondary city case studies in Africa, this study finds that migrants, being younger, better educated and/or complementary to the resident labor force, usually strengthen the urban labor force. In secondary cities, labor market outcomes for migrants are at least as good as those for residents. Migrants also contribute increasingly less to urban population growth. Secondary cities thus appear well placed to leverage migration. This requires good urban management that develops land and labor markets, prepares for growth and benefits everyone, migrants as well as residents. Migrant specific interventions are warranted when divisions between natives and migrants are deep. Strengthening the financial, technical, and planning capacity of towns to better integrate migrants is part and parcel of the good job’s agenda.
    Keywords: migrant; labor market integration of migrants; secondary city; national household survey data; rural to urban migration; solid waste management facility; gender-based discrimination; sexual harassment of woman; access to urban service; disaster risk management; female labor force participation; Social and Economic Inclusion; access to basic service; labor market integration policy; urban labor market; urban population growth; urban labor force; labor market outcome; Gender-Based Violence; large urban centers; data collection effort; Housing and Land; duration of stay; place of origin; natural population growth; good urban management; land and housing; labor market policy; characteristics of migrant; availability of service; urban local government
    Date: 2022–01–14
  8. By: Tabuga, Aubrey D.; Mondez, Maria Blesila D.; Vargas, Anna Rita P.
    Abstract: The COVID-19 pandemic has such a wide-reaching and sudden adverse impact on people’s livelihoods. For a country like the Philippines which significantly relies on overseas remittances to boost household consumption, the return of hundreds of thousands of OFWs is a great reminder of the need for social protection and resilient sources of livelihood. This study examines the access of OFWs to social protection on-site and after they have returned. The objective is to draw useful insights for improving related efforts for ensuring OFWs are protected while working overseas and that the temporary income generated from it aids in building up their resilience when they return to the country for good. The study shows that the most common benefits received by OFWs in their first migration experience are those which meet rather immediate on-site needs than those that are considered as safety nets that allow them to smoothen consumption in times of shocks. Basic worker benefits like health insurance, overtime pay, paid sick leave, and work accident compensation are less common. In fact, only a little over one-half of all workers have health insurance/medical allowance benefits (53%). Only half of the workers received payment for overtime work in their first overseas job. Some 45 percent have received compensation for work accidents. Interestingly, only around 39 percent have been paid for sick leaves. These show the urgency of effective mechanisms for dialogue with host country governments to ensure that OFWs obtain adequate workers’ benefits while working abroad. With respect to accessing social protection, the findings point to the need to target the less educated migrant workers and those who hold elementary occupations in all initiatives related to the improvement of awareness and education campaigns on social protection as these workers have the lowest membership to basic social protection schemes. It is also important to note that such vulnerable workers are also in the bottom income classes. Government agencies mandated to promote the welfare of migrant workers must carry out more aggressive steps towards the inclusion of OFWs in social insurance. These may conduct assessments of the current mechanisms being utilized in securing overseas employment certificates and other such mechanisms with respect to their (in)ability to promote access to social insurance. Other initiatives such as education programs related to financial literacy are also important in the effort to increase the willingness and commitment of migrant workers to regularly contribute to insurance schemes for their own protection. Comments to this paper are welcome within 60 days from the date of posting. Email
    Keywords: social protection; resilience; social insurance; Overseas Filipino Workers; migrant workers; public health shock
    Date: 2021

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.
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