How Important is Selection? Experimental VS. Non‐Experimental Measures of the Income Gains from Migration
AbstractHow much do migrants stand to gain in income from moving across borders? Answering this question is complicated by non-random selection of migrants from the general population, which makes it hard to obtain an appropriate comparison group of non-migrants. New Zealand allows a quota of Tongans to immigrate each year with a random ballot used to choose among the excess number of applicants. A unique survey conducted by the authors allows experimental estimates of the income gains from migration to be obtained by comparing the incomes of migrants to those who applied to migrate, but whose names were not drawn in the ballot, after allowing for the effect of non-compliance among some of those whose names were drawn. We also conducted a survey of individuals who did not apply for the ballot. Comparing this non-applicant group to the migrants enables assessment of the degree to which non-experimental methods can provide an unbiased estimate of the income gains from migration. We find evidence of migrants being positively selected in terms of both observed and unobserved skills. As a result, non-experimental methods other than instrumental variables are found to overstate the gains from migration by 20-82%, with difference-in-differences and bias-adjusted matching estimators performing best among the alternatives to instrumental variables. (JEL: J61, F22, C21) (c) 2010 by the European Economic Association.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by European Economic Association in its journal Journal of the European Economic Association.
Volume (Year): 8 (2010)
Issue (Month): 4 (06)
Other versions of this item:
- David McKenzie & John Gibson & Steven Stillman, 2010. "How Important Is Selection? Experimental vs. Non-Experimental Measures of the Income Gains from Migration," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 8(4), pages 913-945, 06.
- McKenzie, David & Gibson, John & Stillman, Steven, 2006. "How Important Is Selection? Experimental vs. Non-Experimental Measures of the Income Gains from Migration," IZA Discussion Papers 2087, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers
- F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
- C21 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Chris Robinson & Nigel Tomes, 1982. "Self-Selection and Interprovincial Migration in Canada," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 15(3), pages 474-502, August.
- J.D. Angrist & Guido W. Imbens & D.B. Rubin, 1993. "Identification of Causal Effects Using Instrumental Variables," NBER Technical Working Papers 0136, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Rajeev H. Dehejia & Sadek Wahba, 2002.
"Propensity Score-Matching Methods For Nonexperimental Causal Studies,"
The Review of Economics and Statistics,
MIT Press, vol. 84(1), pages 151-161, February.
- Rajeev H. Dehejia & Sadek Wahba, 2002. "Propensity score matching methods for non-experimental causal studies," Discussion Papers, Columbia University, Department of Economics 0102-14, Columbia University, Department of Economics.
- Rajeev H. Dehejia & Sadek Wahba, 1998. "Propensity Score Matching Methods for Non-experimental Causal Studies," NBER Working Papers 6829, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Dehejia, R.H. & Wahba, S., 1998. "Propensity Score Matching Methods for Non-Experimental Causal Studies," Discussion Papers, Columbia University, Department of Economics 1998_02, Columbia University, Department of Economics.
- Joshua D. Angrist, 2004.
"Treatment effect heterogeneity in theory and practice,"
Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society,
Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(494), pages C52-C83, 03.
- Joshua Angrist, 2004. "Treatment Effect Heterogeneity in Theory and Practice," Econometric Society 2004 North American Winter Meetings 186, Econometric Society.
- Angrist, Joshua, 2003. "Treatment Effect Heterogeneity in Theory and Practice," IZA Discussion Papers 851, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Joshua D. Angrist, 2003. "Treatment Effect Heterogeneity in Theory and Practice," NBER Working Papers 9708, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Alberto Abadie & Guido W. Imbens, 2006. "Large Sample Properties of Matching Estimators for Average Treatment Effects," Econometrica, Econometric Society, Econometric Society, vol. 74(1), pages 235-267, 01.
- Dehejia, Rajeev, 2005. "Practical propensity score matching: a reply to Smith and Todd," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 125(1-2), pages 355-364.
- Joop Hartog & Rainer Winkelmann, 2003. "Comparing migrants to non-migrants: The case of Dutch migration to New Zealand," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 16(4), pages 683-705, November.
- Ximena Clark & Timothy J. Hatton & Jeffrey G. Williamson, 2002. "Where Do U.S. Immigrants Come From, and Why?," NBER Working Papers 8998, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Borjas, George J, 1987.
"Self-Selection and the Earnings of Immigrants,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 77(4), pages 531-53, September.
- Daniel Chiquiar & Gordon H. Hanson, 2005.
"International Migration, Self-Selection, and the Distribution of Wages: Evidence from Mexico and the United States,"
Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(2), pages 239-281, April.
- Daniel Chiquiar & Gordon H. Hanson, 2002. "International Migration, Self-Selection, and the Distribution of Wages: Evidence from Mexico and the United States," NBER Working Papers 9242, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Heckman, James J & Ichimura, Hidehiko & Todd, Petra E, 1997. "Matching as an Econometric Evaluation Estimator: Evidence from Evaluating a Job Training Programme," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 64(4), pages 605-54, October.
- Jeffrey Smith & Petra Todd, 2003.
"Does Matching Overcome Lalonde's Critique of Nonexperimental Estimators?,"
University of Western Ontario, CIBC Centre for Human Capital and Productivity Working Papers, University of Western Ontario, CIBC Centre for Human Capital and Productivity
20035, University of Western Ontario, CIBC Centre for Human Capital and Productivity.
- A. Smith, Jeffrey & E. Todd, Petra, 2005. "Does matching overcome LaLonde's critique of nonexperimental estimators?," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 125(1-2), pages 305-353.
- Guido W. Imbens, 2004.
"Nonparametric Estimation of Average Treatment Effects Under Exogeneity: A Review,"
The Review of Economics and Statistics,
MIT Press, vol. 86(1), pages 4-29, February.
- Guido W. Imbens, 2003. "Nonparametric Estimation of Average Treatment Effects under Exogeneity: A Review," NBER Technical Working Papers 0294, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Mckenzie, David & Rapoport, Hillel, 2007.
"Network effects and the dynamics of migration and inequality: Theory and evidence from Mexico,"
Journal of Development Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 84(1), pages 1-24, September.
- David Mckenzie & Hillel Rapoport, 2004. "Network Effects and the Dynamics of Migration and Inequality: Theory and Evidence from Mexico," Working Papers 2004-3, Bar-Ilan University, Department of Economics.
- Ashenfelter, Orley C, 1978. "Estimating the Effect of Training Programs on Earnings," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 60(1), pages 47-57, February.
- James Heckman & Neil Hohmann & Jeffrey Smith, 1998.
"Substitution and Dropout Bias in Social Experiments: A Study of an Influential Social Experiment,"
UWO Department of Economics Working Papers, University of Western Ontario, Department of Economics
9819, University of Western Ontario, Department of Economics.
- James Heckman & Neil Hohmann & Jeffrey Smith & Michael Khoo, 2000. "Substitution And Dropout Bias In Social Experiments: A Study Of An Influential Social Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 115(2), pages 651-694, May.
- Alberto Abadie & David Drukker & Jane Leber Herr & Guido W. Imbens, 2004. "Implementing matching estimators for average treatment effects in Stata," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, StataCorp LP, vol. 4(3), pages 290-311, September.
Blog mentionsAs found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
- Some new experiments trying to help more people emigrate from the Philippines
by David McKenzie in Development Impact on 2013-09-16 13:21:58
This item has more than 25 citations. To prevent cluttering this page, these citations are listed on a separate page. reading lists or Wikipedia pages:
- How Important Is Selection? Experimental Vs. Non-Experimental Measures of the Income Gains from Migration (JEEA 2010) in ReplicationWiki
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Wiley-Blackwell Digital Licensing) or (Christopher F. Baum).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.