Advertisement

Journal of Population Economics

, Volume 32, Issue 3, pp 981–1008 | Cite as

Public beliefs in social mobility and high-skilled migration

  • Claudia LumpeEmail author
Original Paper
  • 292 Downloads

Abstract

This paper investigates how beliefs of the destination country’s population in social mobility may influence the location choice of high-skilled migrants. We pool macro data from the IAB brain-drain dataset with population survey data from the ISSP for the period 1987–2010 to identify the effect of public beliefs in social mobility on the share of high-skilled immigrants (stocks) in the main OECD immigration countries. The empirical results suggest that countries with higher “American Dream” beliefs, i.e., with stronger beliefs that climbing the social ladder can be realized by own hard work, attracted a higher proportion of high-skilled immigrants over time. This pattern even holds against the fact that existing social mobility in these countries is relatively lower.

Keywords

Immigration Public beliefs Social mobility Social status 

JEL Classification

F22 J62 J15 

Notes

Acknowledgments

This paper has been written during a research visit at RWI, Essen, and I am very grateful to RWI for its hospitality. I also thank Thomas K. Bauer, Julia Bredtmann, Christian Lumpe, Juergen Meckl, Matthias Goecke, Lisa Hoeckel, Jana Brandt, Caroline Schwientek, participants of the 19th Workshop on International Economics in Goettingen and the 29th EALE conference in St. Gallen as well as two anonymous referees for very helpful suggestions and comments on this paper. Financial support from the Fritz Thyssen Foundation within the framework of the project “Public attitudes and migration” is also gratefully acknowledged. All remaining errors are my own.

Funding Information

This study was funded by the Fritz Thyssen Foundation within the framework of the project “Public attitudes and migration.”

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The author declares that she has no conflict of interest.

References

  1. Alesina A, Glaeser E, Sacerdote B (2001) Why doesn’t the United States have a European-style welfare state? BPEA 2:187–254Google Scholar
  2. Bauer TK, Lofstrom M, Zimmermann KF (2000) Immigration policy, assimilation of immigrants, and natives’ sentiments towards immigrants: evidence from 12 OECD countries. Swed Econ Policy Rev 7:11–53Google Scholar
  3. Bauer TK, Epstein G, Gang IN (2007) Herd effects or migration networks? The location choice of Mexican immigrants in the US. Res Labor Econ 26:199–229CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Beine M, Docquier F, Özden C (2011) Diasporas. J Dev Econ 95:30–41CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Beine M, Burgoon B, Crock M, Gest J, Hiscox M, McGovern P, Rapoport H, Tielemann E (2014) Measuring immigration policies: preliminary evidence from IMPALA. CESifo Working Paper Series 5109:1–41Google Scholar
  6. Beine M, Boucher A, Burgoon B, Crock M, Gest J, Hiscox M, McGovern P, Rapoport H, Schaper J, Tielemann E (2016) Comparing immigration policies: an overview from the IMPALA database. Int Migr Rev 50 (4):825–1076CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bénabou R, Tirole J (2006a) Belief in a just world and redistributive politics. Q J Econ 121(2):699–746CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Bénabou R, Tirole J (2006b) Incentives and prosocial behavior. Am Econ Rev 96(5):1652–1678CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Bjerre L, Helbling M, Roemer F, Zobel M (2015) Conceptualizing and measuring immigration policies: a comparative perspective. Int Migr Rev 49(3):555–600CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Bloom DE, Stark O (1985) The new economics of labor migration. AEA Pap Proc 75(2):173–178Google Scholar
  11. Borjas GJ (1987) Self-selection and the earnings of immigrants. Am Econ Rev 77(4):531–553Google Scholar
  12. Borjas GJ (1999a) Immigration and welfare magnets. J Labor Econ 17 (4):607–637CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Borjas GJ (1999b) The economic analysis of immigration. In: Ashenfelter OC, Card D (eds) Handbook of labor economics. North-Holland, Amsterdam, pp 1697–1760Google Scholar
  14. Bruecker H, Capuano S, Marfouk A (2013) Education, gender and international migration: insights from a panel-dataset 1980–2010. Mimeo, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  15. Card D, Dustmann C, Prestin I (2012) Immigration, wages and compositional amenities. J Eur Econ Assoc 10:78–119CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Chiswick BR (1999) Are immigrants favorably self-selected? Am Econ Rev 89:181–185CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Chiswick BR, Miller PW (2015) International migration and the economics of language. In: Chiswick BR, Miller PW (eds) Handbook of the economics of international migration, 1A. Elsevier, Amsterdam, pp 211–269Google Scholar
  18. Corak M (2013) Income inequality, equality of opportunity, and intergenerational mobility. J Econ Perspect 27(3):79–102CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Czaika M, Parsons CR (2016) The gravity of high-skilled migration policies. KNOMAD Working Paper 13:1–33Google Scholar
  20. Docquier F, Rapoport H (2012) Globalization, brain drain, and development. J Econ Lit 50(3):681–730CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Eichhorst W, Giulietti C, Guzi M, Kendzia MJ, Monti P, Frattini T, Nowotny K, Huber P, Vandeweghe B (2011) The integration of migrants and its effects on the labor market. European Parliament Study Policy Department A - Economic and Scientific Policy, pp 1–117Google Scholar
  22. Eurofound (2014) Labour migration in the EU: recent trends and policies. Publications Office of the European Union, LuxembourgGoogle Scholar
  23. Fertig M, Schmidt CM, Sinning MG (2009) The impact of demographic change on human capital accumulation. Labor Econ 16:659–668CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Freedom House (2016) Freedom in the world 2016. https://www.freedomhouse.org/report-types/freedom-world. Accessed 20 April 2017
  25. Geis W, Uebelmesser S, Werding M (2011) Why go to France or Germany, if you could as well go to the UK or the US? Selective features of immigration to four major OECD countries. J Comm Market Stud 49:767–796CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Geis W, Uebelmesser S, Werding M (2013) How do migrants choose their destination country? An analysis of institutional determinants. Rev Int Econ 21:825–840CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Gest J, Boucher A, Challen S, Burgoon B, Thielemann E, Beine M, McGovern P, Crock M, Rapoport M, Hiscox M (2014) Measuring and comparing immigration policies globally: challenges and solutions. Glob Policy 5 (3):1–14CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Gorinas C, Pytliková M (2017) The influence of attitudes towards immigrants on international migration. Int Migr Rev 51(2):416–451CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Grogger J, Hanson GH (2011) Income maximization and the sorting of international migrants. J Dev Econ 95:42–57CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Hatton TJ, Williamson JG (2003) Demographic and economic pressure on emigration out of Africa. Scand J Econ 105(3):465–486CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Hausman J, McFadden D (1984) Specification tests for the multinomial logit model. Econometrica 52(5):1219–1240CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Helbling M, Bjerre L, Roemer F, Zobel M (2017) Measuring immigration policies: the IMPIC database. Eur Polit Sci 16(1):79–98CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Huddleston T, Bilgili O, Joki A, Vankova Z (2015) Migrant integration policy index 2015. http://www.mipex.eu/. Accessed 27 February 2018
  34. Humpert S (2015) Fachkraeftezuwanderung im internationalen Vergleich, Working Paper No. 62 of a research group of the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees, pp 1–117Google Scholar
  35. ILO (2010) International labour migration: a rights-based approach. http://www.ilo.org/global/publications/ilo-bookstore/order-online/books/WCMS_125361/lang--en/index.htm. Accessed 27 February 2018
  36. ILO (2018a) Global employment trends 2014: supporting data sets. http://www.ilo.org/global/research/global-reports/global-employment-trends/2014/WCMS_234879/lang--en/index.htm. Accessed 27 February 2018
  37. Isphording IE, Otten S (2013) The costs of Babylon – Linguistic distance in applied economics. Rev Int Econ 21(2):354–369CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. ISSP Research Group (1989) International social survey programme: social inequality I – ISSP 1987, GESIS data archive, cologne, ZA1680 Data file Version 1.0.0Google Scholar
  39. ISSP Research Group (2012) International social survey programme: social inequality IV – ISSP 2009, GESIS data archive, cologne, ZA5400 Data file Version 3.0.0Google Scholar
  40. ISSP Research Group (2014) International social survey programme: social inequality I-IV – ISSP 1987-1992-1999-2009, GESIS data archive, cologne, ZA5890 Data file Version 1.0.0Google Scholar
  41. Krueger AB (2012) The rise and consequences of inequality, Presentation made to the Center for American Progress, January 12th, https://www.americanprogress.org/events/2012/01/12/17181/the-rise-and-consequences-of-inequality. Accessed 27 February 2018
  42. Lumpe C, Lumpe C, Meckl J (2016) Social status and public expectations: self-selection of high-skilled migrants, Ruhr Economic Papers No. 614, RWI, Essen, pp 1–28Google Scholar
  43. Mayda AM (2006) Who is against immigration? A cross-country investigation of individual attitudes towards immigration. Rev Econ Stat 88(3):510–530, 1–12CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Mayda AM (2010) International migration: a panel data analysis of the determinants of bilateral flows. J Popul Econ 23:1249–1274CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Mayer T, Zignago S (2011) Notes on CEPII’s distances measures: the GeoDist database, CEPII Working Paper No. 2011–25Google Scholar
  46. McFadden D (1974) Conditional logit analysis of qualitative choice behavior. In: Zarembka P (ed) Frontiers in econometrics. Academic Press, New York, pp 105–142Google Scholar
  47. Melitz J, Toubal F (2014) Native language, spoken language, translation and trade. J Int Econ 92(2):351–363CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Mincer J (1978) Family migration decisions. J Polit Econ 86:749–773CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. OECD (2012) Free movement of workers and labour market adjustment. Recent experiences from OECD countries and the European Union. OECD Publishing, ParisCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. OECD (2013) Recruiting immigrant workers: Germany 2013. OECD Publishing, ParisCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Ortega F, Peri G (2009) The causes and effects of international migrations: evidence from OECD countries, 1980–2005, NBER Working Paper No. 14833, NBER, Cambridge, MA, pp 1–42Google Scholar
  52. Ortega F, Peri G (2013) The effect of income and immigration policies on international migration. Migr Stud 1(1):47–74CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. O’Rourke K, Sinnott R (2006) The determinants of individual attitudes towards immigrants. Eur J Polit Econ 22:838–861CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Pedersen P, Pytliková M, Smith N (2008) Selection and network effects—migration flows into OECD countries 1990–2000. Eur Econ Rev 52:1160–1186CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Peri G (2005) Skills and talents of immigrants. A comparison between the European Union and the United States, Working Paper No. 524, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics, pp 1–32Google Scholar
  56. Piketty T (1998) Self–fulfilling beliefs about social status. J Pub Econ 70:115–132CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Roy AD (1951) Some thoughts on the distribution of earnings. Oxf Econ Pap 3:135–146CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Sjastaad LA (1962) The costs and returns of human migration. J Polit Econ 70(5):80–93CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Stiglitz JE (2012) The price of inequality: how today’s divided society endangers our future. Norton, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  60. World Bank (2016a) World development indicators. http://databank.worldbank.org/products/wdi. Accessed 20 April 2017
  61. World Bank (2016b) World Bank country and lending groups. https://datahelpdesk.worldbank.org/knowledgebase/articles/906519worldbank.org/products/wdi. Accessed 20 April 2017

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of EconomicsJustus-Liebig-University GiessenGiessenGermany
  2. 2.Research Department “Labor Markets, Education, Population”RWI – Leibniz-Institut für WirtschaftsforschungEssenGermany

Personalised recommendations