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The why, when, and how of immigration amnesties

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  • Gil Epstein
  • Avi Weiss

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Abstract

This paper presents some of the many issues involved in the granting of an amnesty to illegal immigrants. Complementing studies by Chau (2001, 2003), Karlson and Katz (2003) and Gang and Yun (2006), we consider government behavior with respect to allocations on limiting infiltration (border control) and apprehending infiltrators (internal control) and with respect to the granting of amnesties, the timing of amnesties, and limitations on eligibility for those amnesties. We demonstrate the effects of government actions on allocations and the flow of immigrants, and how the interactions between these factors combine to yield an optimal amnesty policy. We also consider two extensions – intertemporal transfers of policing funds and “fuzziness” in declarations regarding eligibility for an amnesty aimed at apprehending and deporting undesirables.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal Journal of Population Economics.

Volume (Year): 24 (2011)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
Pages: 285-316

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Handle: RePEc:spr:jopoec:v:24:y:2011:i:1:p:285-316

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Related research

Keywords: Amnesty; Illegal immigration; Border and internal controls; J61; J68; H59;

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References

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  1. Epstein, Gil S & Hillman, Arye L. & Weiss, Avi, 1998. "Creating Illegal Immigrants," CEPR Discussion Papers 1796, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Gil S. Epstien & Avi Weiss, 2001. "A Theory of Immigration Amnesties," Working Papers 2001-09, Department of Economics, Bar-Ilan University.
  3. Gordon M Myers & Yorgos Y Papageorgiou, 1997. "Immigration Control and the Welfare State," Department of Economics Working Papers 1997-01, McMaster University.
  4. Alessandra Venturini, 1999. "Do immigrants working illegally reduce the natives' legal employment? Evidence from Italy," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 135-154.
  5. Klaus F. Zimmermann, 1995. "Tackling the European Migration Problems," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(2), pages 45-62, Spring.
  6. Ethier, Wilfred J, 1986. "Illegal Immigration: The Host-Country Problem," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(1), pages 56-71, March.
  7. Thomas Bauer & Gil S. Epstein & Ira N. Gang, 2009. "Measuring ethnic linkages among migrants," International Journal of Manpower, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 30(1/2), pages 56-69, May.
  8. George J. Borjas, 1995. "The Economic Benefits from Immigration," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(2), pages 3-22, Spring.
  9. Andreoni, James, 1991. "The desirability of a permanent tax amnesty," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(2), pages 143-159, July.
  10. Nordhaus, William D, 1975. "The Political Business Cycle," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(2), pages 169-90, April.
  11. Slobodan Djajic, 1999. "Dynamics of immigration control," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 45-61.
  12. Hillman, Arye L. & Weiss, Avi, 1999. "A theory of permissible illegal immigration," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 585-604, November.
  13. George J. Borjas, 1994. "The Economics of Immigration," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 32(4), pages 1667-1717, December.
  14. Mark Guzman & Joseph Haslag & Pia Orrenius, 2008. "On the determinants of optimal border enforcement," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 34(2), pages 261-296, February.
  15. Karlson, Stephen H. & Katz, Eliakim, 2003. "A positive theory of immigration amnesties," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 78(2), pages 231-239, February.
  16. Ira N. Gang & Myeong-Su Yun, 2006. "Immigration Amnesty and Immigrant's Earnings," Departmental Working Papers 200632, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.
  17. Andrea Gavosto & Alessandra Venturini & Claudia Villosio, 1999. "Do Immigrants Compete with Natives?," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 13(3), pages 603-621, 09.
  18. Malik, Arun S. & Schwab, Robert M., 1991. "The economics of tax amnesties," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 29-49, October.
  19. Rozevitch, Shimon & Weiss, Avi, 1993. " Beneficiaries from Federal Transfers to Municipalities: The Case of Israel," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 76(4), pages 335-46, August.
  20. Chau, Nancy H, 2001. "Strategic Amnesty and Credible Immigration Reform," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 19(3), pages 604-34, July.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Alessandra Casarico & Giovanni Facchini & Tommaso Frattini, 2012. "Spending More is Spending Less: Policy Dilemmas on Irregular Migration," Development Working Papers 330, Centro Studi Luca d\'Agliano, University of Milano, revised 27 Mar 2012.
  2. Karin Mayr & Steffen Minter & Tim Krieger, 2009. "Policies on illegal immigration in a federation," Vienna Economics Papers 0909, University of Vienna, Department of Economics.
  3. Russo, Giuseppe, 2008. "Voting over Selective Immigration Policies with Immigration Aversion," MPRA Paper 6845, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  4. Gil S. Epstein & Odelia Heizler, 2007. "Illegal Migration, Enforcement and Minimum Wage," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 0708, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  5. Djajić, Slobodan & Vinogradova, Alexandra, 2013. "Undocumented migrants in debt," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(C), pages 15-24.
  6. Sara de la Rica & Albretch Glitz & Francesc Ortega, 2013. "Immigration in Europe: Trends, Policies and Empirical Evidence," Working Papers 2013-16, FEDEA.
  7. Francesco Magris & Giuseppe Russo, 2012. "Fiscal Revenues and Commitment in Immigration Amnesties," CSEF Working Papers 315, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
  8. Alessandra Casarico & Giovanni Facchini & Tommaso Frattini, 2012. "Spending more is spending less: on the desirability of enforcing migration," Norface Discussion Paper Series 2012006, Norface Research Programme on Migration, Department of Economics, University College London.
  9. Alessandra Casarico & Giovanni Facchini & Tommaso Frattini, 2012. "What Drives Immigration Amnesties?," CESifo Working Paper Series 3981, CESifo Group Munich.

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