nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2023‒12‒04
nine papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura,  La Trobe University

  1. The effect of foreign aid on migration: Global micro evidence from world bank projects By Fuchs, Andreas; Gröger, André; Heidland, Tobias; Wellner, Lukas
  2. The Effect of Schooling on Parental Integration By Ann-Marie Sommerfeld
  3. Heterogeneous Returns to Education across Hukou-Migration Subgroups in China By Juan Huang; Weerachart Kilenthong
  4. Climatic stresses and rural emigration in Guatemala By Britos, Braulio; Hernandez, Manuel A.; Puricelli, Estefania; Sahajpal, Ritvik
  5. Occupational Trajectories Among Refugees in Austria: The Role of Co-ethnic and Austrian Social Networks in Job Search By Sandra M. Leitner
  6. The Labour Market Entry and Integration of Refugees and Other Migrants in Austria By Stefan Jestl; Maryna Tverdostup
  7. Welfare Migration By Martin Kahanec; Martin Guzi
  8. Urban and Regional Migration Estimates, Second Quarter 2023 Update By Stephan D. Whitaker
  9. Enter Stage Left: Immigration and the American Arts By K. Pun Winichakul; Ning Zhang

  1. By: Fuchs, Andreas; Gröger, André; Heidland, Tobias; Wellner, Lukas
    Abstract: In response to surging immigration pressure in Europe and the United States, Western policymakers advocate foreign aid as a means to fight the 'root causes' of irregular migration. This article provides the first global evidence of the effects of aid on migration preferences, migration flows, and possible underlying mechanisms, both in the short and longer term. We combine newly geocoded data on World Bank aid project allocation at the subnational level over the period 2008--2019 with exceptionally rich survey data from a sample of almost one million individuals across the entire developing world and data on migration and asylum seeker flows to high-income countries. Employing two distinct causal estimation strategies, we show that in the short term (after the announcement of a World Bank project and within two years after project disbursement), foreign aid improves individual expectations about the future and trust in national institutions in aid-receiving regions, which translate into reduced individual migration preferences and asylum-seeker flows. In the longer term (between three to five years after disbursement), foreign aid fosters improvements in individual welfare through poverty reduction and income increases, resulting in larger regular migration to high-income countries. Our findings show that aid can cause a short-lived reduction in migration aspirations, except in fragile Sub-Saharan African contexts where aid appears largely ineffective. In contrast, foreign aid enhances individual capabilities over the longer term, contributing to greater regular migration, consistent with the 'mobility transition' theory.
    Keywords: Foreign aid, World Bank, aid effectiveness, international migration, asylum seeking, migration preferences, Gallup World Poll
    JEL: F22 F35 F53 H77 O15 O19
    Date: 2023
  2. By: Ann-Marie Sommerfeld (Friedrich Schiller University Jena)
    Abstract: Exploiting the age-at-enrollment policies in 16 German states as exogenous source of variation, I examine whether the schooling of the oldest child in a migrant household affects parents' integration. My analysis links administrative records on primary school enrollment cutoff dates with micro data from the German Socioeconomic Panel (GSOEP). Using a regression discontinuity design around the school enrollment cutoff and an instrumental variable approach I show that children's schooling improves the integration of parents along several dimensions, such as labor market outcomes, financial worries, and German language skills. Labor market outcomes are most positively affected for mothers. Additional analysis of underlying mechanisms suggests that results are driven by gains in disposable time and exposure to the German language and culture.
    Keywords: international migration, assimilation, integration, education, schooling, family, regression discontinuity, instrumental variables
    JEL: F22 I24 I26 J16
    Date: 2023–11–14
  3. By: Juan Huang; Weerachart Kilenthong
    Abstract: This paper uses the China Household Income Project 2018 dataset to estimate returns to education for various Hukou-migration subgroups. We overcome the endogeneity problem of years of schooling using an instrument based on the Great Expansion of Higher Education policy. Our results indicate that the highest returns are for urban native workers (27.4%), followed by urban Hukou-converted (25.0%) and rural native workers (14.7%). In contrast, the returns to education for rural-urban migrant workers are insignificant. Further analyses suggest that Hukou conversion significantly increased the returns to education for rural-origin people by enabling them access to better job opportunities.
    Keywords: returns to education; Hukou system; migration; China
    JEL: I24 I26 J15 J61
    Date: 2023–11
  4. By: Britos, Braulio; Hernandez, Manuel A.; Puricelli, Estefania; Sahajpal, Ritvik
    Abstract: International migration is a recurrent and growing phenomenon and a large share of emigrants originate from rural areas. This study examines the association between climatic stresses and rural emigration in Guatemala. We exploit variations on climatic stress situations and emigration flows at the subnational level and over time to examine whether the observed migration dynamics can be explained by the occurrence of specific adverse weather events. We find that drought periods affect emigration positively the following year, especially among men, while periods of high temperatures and low soil moisture affect male and female emigration negatively. The results are generally not much sensitive to alternative model specifications and estimations. The apparent mixed findings point to both direct effects where climatic stresses may encourage people to migrate in search of better opportunities, as well as indirect effects in the sense that climatic stresses affect agricultural productivity and household liquidity, which may prevent people from migrating despite their willingness to emigrate.
    Keywords: GUATEMALA; LATIN AMERICA; CENTRAL AMERICA; NORTH AMERICA; migration; rural population; climate change; weather hazards; gender; households; agricultural production; climatic stresses
    Date: 2023
  5. By: Sandra M. Leitner (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw)
    Abstract: This paper analyses occupational trajectories of refugees from their last job in the home country to their first and current jobs in Austria and the role of co-ethnic and Austrian social networks in job search, using data from a large-scale survey of recognised refugees from Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq and Iran who have predominantly come to Austria since 2010, thereby covering the strong refugee wave of 2015 2016. The results corroborate a U-shaped pattern, with a sharp initial occupational loss followed by a rather moderate occupational recovery. Although native social networks play no role for occupational changes, co-ethnic social networks – particularly when used as a stand-alone job search strategy – prove detrimental along the entire trajectory. However, co-ethnic social networks are beneficial if used in combination with the Austrian labour market service or NGOs. Some refugees prove particularly vulnerable, such as older refugees or highly educated refugees who undergo more pronounced initial occupational downgrading, with subsequent occupational upgrading either limited or absent.
    Keywords: Refugees, labour market integration, occupational trajectories, social capital
    JEL: J15 J24 J62
    Date: 2023–11
  6. By: Stefan Jestl (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw); Maryna Tverdostup (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw)
    Abstract: This paper analyses the labour market entry of refugees and other (non-humanitarian) migrants originating from middle- and low-income non-European countries that arrived in Austria in 2014-2016. Specifically, we analyse factors that shaped the transition to and out of the first job in the Austrian labour market, document the characteristics of the first job and explore job stability in Austria. Even though refugees took longer to find a job, individual and household characteristics, as well as labour market indicators, are associated with the time between arrival and the first job in Austria, similar to other migrants. Refugees and other migrants also found similar job types as their entry jobs, which tended to be located in low-wage segments. The results, however, suggest that other migrants held their first job, on average, for a longer time than refugees. Although other migrants quit their first job relatively quickly when it was marginal employment, refugees tended to hold marginal jobs as long as full-time and part-time jobs. Finally, our results suggest that entry jobs with a higher quality in terms of working hours and wages (i.e. full-time jobs) tended to be linked with job stability, while entry jobs with a lower quality (i.e. marginal jobs) tended to be associated with job instability for both refugees and other migrants. The results of the paper showcase the importance of immediate access to various training and re-education programs for refugees to improve the quality of their entry jobs and their long-term prospects in the Austrian labour market.
    Keywords: Refugees, labour market integration, labour market entry, labour market transition, job stability
    JEL: C41 J15 J62
    Date: 2023–11
  7. By: Martin Kahanec; Martin Guzi
    Abstract: The welfare magnet hypothesis, also referred to as welfare shopping or welfare tourism, that migrants make location choices based on the provision of welfare benefits in alternative destinations, has resonated in the academic as well as public discourse on migration. This chapter summarizes theoretical models behind the welfare magnet hypothesis and reviews the empirical evidence on welfare-induced migration. The literature is inconclusive on the matter. Whereas there are theoretical arguments why welfare might matter for migration flows and several studies find a small positive association between welfare and migration, other studies find no such effects. In particular, some studies show that controlling for the endogeneity of welfare in the welfare-migration nexus reduces or eliminates the effect of welfare generosity on immigration. On the other hand, recent quasi-experimental studies demonstrate some effects of welfare on the location choices of asylees and refugees. Exploring a unique European dataset, this chapter contributes to this literature by providing some evidence that better accessibility of social assistance for immigrants is associated with larger immigrant inflows. Overall, the consensus in the literature is that the effects of welfare on migration are relatively small compared to other drivers of migration. The chapter concludes with highlighting the broader implications of the welfare magnet hypothesis and provides guidance for future research about it.
    JEL: H53 J15 J61 J68
    Date: 2023–11–21
  8. By: Stephan D. Whitaker
    Abstract: This Data Brief updates the figures that appeared in "Urban and Regional Migration Estimates: Will Your City Recover from the Pandemic?" with data for 2023 Q2 for all series. Migration estimates will enable us to track which urban neighborhoods and metro areas are returning to their old migration patterns and where the pandemic has permanently shifted migration trends.
    Keywords: urban economics; regional economics; COVID-19 pandemic; urban migration; Regional migration
    Date: 2023–11–14
  9. By: K. Pun Winichakul; Ning Zhang
    Abstract: To what extent have immigrants contributed to the growth of the United States arts sector? In this paper, we explore the impact of immigration during the Age of Mass Migration on the development of the arts in the U.S. over the past century. In the short run, our results suggest that immigration helped produce greater numbers of native artists. Over a century later, the bene fits to the arts persist. Counties with greater historical immigration house more arts businesses and nonprofit organizations that generate more revenue, employ a larger proportion of the community, and earn more federal arts grants. When considering potential mechanisms, our analysis suggests that greater interaction between the aggregate immigrant population and natives led to increased exposure to new arts experiences and ideas, creating arts markets that persisted in the long run. This channel is further supported by positive links between the presence of immigrants from certain countries of origin and the growth of art forms popular in those countries, and evidence of long-run benefits to the arts that cannot be attributed to higher income in a causal mediation analysis. Altogether, our results highlight the important role that immigrants played in the development of the arts in America.
    Date: 2022–12–06

This nep-mig issue is ©2023 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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