Journal of Population Economics

, Volume 24, Issue 4, pp 1331–1358 | Cite as

Can migration reduce educational attainment? Evidence from Mexico

  • David McKenzieEmail author
  • Hillel Rapoport
Original Paper


This paper examines the impact of migration on educational attainment in rural Mexico. Using historical migration rates to instrument for current migration, we find evidence of a significant negative effect of migration on schooling attendance and attainment. IV-censored ordered probits show that living in a migrant household lowers the chances of boys completing junior high school and of boys and girls completing high school. We find that the observed decrease in schooling of 16- to 18-year-olds is accounted for by current migration of boys and increased housework for girls.


Migration Educational attainments Mexico 

JEL Classification

O15 J61 D31 



We thank an anonymous referee, Thomas Bauer, Gordon Hanson, Frédéric Jouneau, Omar Licandro, Ernesto Lopez-Cordoba, François-Charles Wolff, and various seminar and conference audiences for useful comments on earlier drafts.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.MSN MC3-307The World BankWashingtonUSA
  2. 2.Center for International Development, Kennedy School of GovernmentHarvard UniversityCambridgeUSA
  3. 3.BREADCambridgeUSA
  4. 4.CReAMLondonUK
  5. 5.IZABonnGermany
  6. 6.Department of EconomicsBar-Ilan UniversityRamat-GanIsrael
  7. 7.EQUIPPEUniversity of Lille IILilleFrance

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