nep-mig New Economics Papers
on Economics of Human Migration
Issue of 2024‒03‒25
five papers chosen by
Yuji Tamura,  La Trobe University

  1. Breaking Barriers: The Impact of Employer Exposure to Immigrants By Lehrer, Steven; Lepage, Louis-Pierre; Sousa Pereira, Nuno
  2. Immigrant Diversity and Long-Run Development By Luigi Minale; Rudi Rocha; Bruno Vigna
  3. Brexit and Foreign Students in Gravity By Ronald B. Davies; Lena S. Specht
  4. Assimilate for God: The Impact of Religious Divisions on Danish American Communities By Jeanet Sinding Bentzen; Nina Boberg-Fazlić; Paul Sharp; Christian Volmar Skovsgaard; Christian Vedel
  5. Diversity and Discrimination in the Classroom By Dan Anderberg; Gordon B. Dahl; Cristina Felfe; Helmut Rainer; Thomas Siedler

  1. By: Lehrer, Steven (Queen's University); Lepage, Louis-Pierre (Swedish Institute for Social Research, Stockholm University); Sousa Pereira, Nuno (University of Porto)
    Abstract: We study how exposure of employers to immigrants, both at the market and at the individual firm level, mitigates immigrant-native disparities. We use administrative employee-employer matched data from Portugal, which provides a unique setting given that it experienced almost no immigration until the early 2000s followed by substantial immigration waves. Focusing on the evolution of market wages across successive immigration cohorts, we find that increased employer exposure to immigrant groups can account for up to 25% of the wage convergence between immigrants and natives over the last two decades. We also document that individual-level exposure of firms to immigrants plays an important role, influencing future hiring and remuneration of immigrants. Our results provide new insights into how barriers to hiring different worker groups shape economic inequality, with novel implications for immigration policies.
    Keywords: immigration; immigrant-native wage gaps
    JEL: J15 J31
    Date: 2024–03–01
  2. By: Luigi Minale (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid); Rudi Rocha (São Paulo School of Business Administration, Getulio Vargas Foundation); Bruno Vigna (BNDES)
    Abstract: The article investigates the long-term economic effects of immigrant diversity. Focusing on the large immigration wave experienced by Brazil at the turn of the twentieth century, we ask whether municipalities in the State of São Paulo that received a population of immigrants characterized by a more diverse mix of origin countries ended up having better long-term economic outcomes. To identify causal effects, we leverage on unique historical individual-level data in immigrants arriving in São Paulo between 1880 and 1920, and develop an instrumental variable strategy that combines time variation in the composition of immigrants arriving from overseas with the timing of the railway network expansion in the state. We find that a one standard deviation increase in accumulated immigrant diversity in 1920 is associated with a 7-8% higher income per capita in 2000. This effect is economically relevant and robust to various identification tests. Furthermore, when exploring the mechanisms through which immigrant diversity affected long-term development, we document that municipalities that hosted more a more diverse pool of immigrants experienced (i) larger proportions of employment in manufacturing and services as well as greater occupational diversity within manufacturing in the long-term; (ii) higher investment in public goods, as measured by municipal spending on education; (iii) and higher education outputs in the long-run.
    Keywords: birthplace diversity, immigration, long-term development
    JEL: C36 N36 O15
    Date: 2024–03
  3. By: Ronald B. Davies; Lena S. Specht
    Abstract: This paper examines the impact of Brexit on international student migration. In a structural gravity model, we estimate student migration between 69 countries for counterfactual scenarios in which the United Kingdom leaves the European Union one year before the referendum. This exercise reveals a decrease in exchange students studying in the UK of around 3.8% to 4.9%. While the number of non-EU students to the UK rises, a drop in EU student numbers drives this result. Similarly, 30% to 38% fewer UK students choose to study abroad. The estimated changes in international student stocks show that most other member countries lose international students and non-EU countries host more than without Brexit. Our findings provide evidence that there may be hidden costs to Brexit affecting global student exchanges that we have yet to see.
    Keywords: international migration, international students, gravity model, Brexit
    JEL: F22 I28 J11
    Date: 2024
  4. By: Jeanet Sinding Bentzen (University of Copenhagen, CAGE, CEPR); Nina Boberg-Fazlić (TU Dortmund University, CEPR); Paul Sharp (University of Southern Denmark, CAGE, CEPR); Christian Volmar Skovsgaard (University of Southern Denmark); Christian Vedel (University of Southern Denmark)
    Abstract: The cultural assimilation of immigrants into the host society is often equated with prospects for economic success, with religion seen as a potential barrier. We investigate the role of ethnic enclaves and churches for the assimilation of Danish Americans using a difference-indifferences setting. Following the ordination of a divisive religious figure in 1883, this otherwise small and homogeneous group split into rival Lutheran revivalist camps - so-called “Happy” and “Holy” Danes. The former sought the preservation of Danish culture and tradition, while the latter encouraged assimilation. We use data from the US census and Danish American church and newspaper archives, and find that Danish Americans living in a county with a “Happy” church chose more Danish names for their children. Newspapers read by “Holy Danes” saw a more rapid Anglicization of the language used. Religious beliefs thus facilitated assimilation. Divergence in behaviour only emerged following the religious division.
    Keywords: Assimilation, Danish Americans, enclaves, immigration, religion
    JEL: F22 J61 N31 N32
    Date: 2024–03
  5. By: Dan Anderberg; Gordon B. Dahl; Cristina Felfe; Helmut Rainer; Thomas Siedler
    Abstract: What makes diversity unifying in some settings but divisive in others? We examine how the mixing of ethnic groups in German schools affects intergroup cooperation and trust. We leverage the quasi-random assignment of students to classrooms within schools to obtain variation in the type of diversity that prevails in a peer group. We combine this with a large-scale, incentivized lab-in-field-experiment based on the investment game, allowing us to assess the in-group bias of native German students in their interactions with fellow natives (in-group) versus immigrants (out-group). We find in-group bias peaks in culturally polarized classrooms, where the native and immigrant groups are both large, but have different religious or language backgrounds. In contrast, in classrooms characterized by non-cultural polarization, fractionalization, or a native supermajority, there are significantly lower levels of own-group favoritism. In terms of mechanisms, we find empirical evidence that culturally polarized classrooms foster negative stereotypes about immigrants' trustworthiness and amplify taste-based discrimination, both of which are costly and lead to lower payouts. In contrast, accurate statistical discrimination is ruled out by design in our experiment. These findings suggest that extra efforts are needed to counteract low levels of inclusivity and trust in culturally polarized environments.
    JEL: J15
    Date: 2024–02

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