Recent literature suggests that emigration can affect political and institutional outcomes (voting in elections, government accountability, voting for pro-democratic parties, prevalence of democracy, involvement in and tolerance of corrupt exchanges etc.) in the migrants’ countries of origin. This chapter outlines the conceptual channels through which emigration may affect institutional quality back home, highlighting Hirschman’s model of ‘Exit and Voice’, Levitt’s ‘Social Remittances’ hypothesis, and explanations related to the receipt of monetary remittances. It then reviews the growing empirical literature on the question. A common finding emerging from empirical analyses is that migrants going to countries with better governance are more likely to have a positive effect on the institutional quality back home. The chapter concludes by identifying gaps and suggesting directions for future research.
- Social remittances
- Monetary remittances
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I acknowledge an excellent policy brief by Lodigiani (2016). I expand on her work by considering contributions from a broader range of disciplines (in particular, political science) and a broader range of institutional outcomes (in particular, corruption).
The same effect might apply to the substantial migration into Russia from other former Soviet republics, but no empirical studies exist on that.
The classification of autocracies here follows Geddes et al. (2014).
The correlational evidence is also important as it reveals “stylised facts” that need to be explained.
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Ivlevs, A. (2021). Does Emigration Affect Political and Institutional Development in Migrants’ Countries of Origin?. In: Douarin, E., Havrylyshyn, O. (eds) The Palgrave Handbook of Comparative Economics. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-50888-3_29
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