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The Development Impact of a Best Practice Seasonal Worker Policy

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  • John Gibson

    (University of Waikato)

  • David McKenzie

    (World Bank, BREAD, CEPR, CReAM and IZA)

Abstract

Seasonal migration programs are widely used around the world, yet there is little evidence as to their development impacts. A multiyear prospective evaluation of New Zealand's Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) seasonal worker program allows us to measure the impact of participating in this program on households in Tonga and Vanuatu. Using a propensity-score prescreened difference-in-differences analysis based on surveys fielded before, during, and after participation, we find that the RSE has indeed had positive development impacts that dwarf those of other popular development interventions. It has increased income, consumption, and savings of households; durable goods ownership; and subjective standard of living. The results also suggest that child schooling improved in Tonga. © 2014 The World Bank

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by MIT Press in its journal Review of Economics and Statistics.

Volume (Year): 96 (2014)
Issue (Month): 2 (May)
Pages: 229-243

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Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:96:y:2014:i:2:p:229-243

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Related research

Keywords: seasonal migration; matched difference-in-differences;

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References

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  1. David McKenzie & Pilar Garcia Martinez & L. Alan Winters, 2008. "Who is Coming from Vanuatu to New Zealand under the New Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) Program?," Working Papers in Economics 08/09, University of Waikato, Department of Economics.
  2. David S. Lee, 2009. "Training, Wages, and Sample Selection: Estimating Sharp Bounds on Treatment Effects," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 76(3), pages 1071-1102.
  3. L. Alan Winters & Terrie L. Walmsley & Zhen Kun Wang & Roman Grynberg, 2003. "Liberalising Temporary Movement of Natural Persons: An Agenda for the Development Round," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 26(8), pages 1137-1161, 08.
  4. 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, vol. 8(4), pages 913-945, 06.
  5. Ravallion, Martin & Lokshin, Michael, 2000. "Identifying welfare effects from subjective questions," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2301, The World Bank.
  6. Richard K. Crump & V. Joseph Hotz & Guido W. Imbens & Oscar A. Mitnik, 2009. "Dealing with limited overlap in estimation of average treatment effects," Biometrika, Biometrika Trust, vol. 96(1), pages 187-199.
  7. Macours, Karen & Vakis, Renos, 2010. "Seasonal Migration and Early Childhood Development," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(6), pages 857-869, June.
  8. Dehejia, Rajeev, 2005. "Practical propensity score matching: a reply to Smith and Todd," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 125(1-2), pages 355-364.
  9. Ariel Fiszbein & Norbert Schady & Francisco H. G. Ferreira & Margaret Grosh & Niall Keleher & Pedro Olinto & Emmanuel Skoufias, 2009. "Conditional Cash Transfers : Reducing Present and Future Poverty," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 2597, October.
  10. Michael Clemens & Claudio Montenegro & Lant Pritchett, 2008. "The Place Premium: Wage Differences for Identical Workers across the U.S. Border," Working Papers 148, Center for Global Development.
  11. Martin RUHS, 2006. "The potential of temporary migration programmes in future international migration policy," International Labour Review, International Labour Organization, vol. 145(1-2), pages 7-36, 03.
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Cited by:
  1. John Gibson & David McKenzie & Halahingano Rohorua, . "Development Impacts of Seasonal and Temporary Migration: A Review of Evidence from the Pacific and Southeast Asia," Asia and the Pacific Policy Studies 201412, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
  2. Slobodan Djajic, 2014. "Guest-Worker Programs," CESifo DICE Report, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 12(2), pages 16-19, 07.
  3. Catia Batista & Tara McIndoe- Calder & Pedro C. Vicente, 2014. "Return Migration, Self-Selection and Entrepreneurship in Mozambique," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 1417, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  4. Akbulut-Yuksel, Mevlude & Yuksel, Mutlu, 2011. "The Long-Term Direct and External Effects of Jewish Expulsions in Nazi Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 5850, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Melissa SIEGEL & Jennifer WAIDLER, 2012. "Migration and multi-dimensional poverty in Moldovan communities," Eastern Journal of European Studies, Centre for European Studies, Alexandru Ioan Cuza University, vol. 3, pages 105-119, December.
  6. Michael Clemens and David McKenzie, 2014. "Why Don't Remittances Appear to Affect Growth? - Working Paper 366," Working Papers 366, Center for Global Development.
  7. Gharad Bryan & Shyamal Chowdhury & A. Mushfiq Mobarak, 2011. "Seasonal Migration and Risk Aversion," Working Papers id:4650, eSocialSciences.
  8. Gharad Bryan & Shyamal Chowdhury & Ahmed Mushfiq Mobarak, 2014. "Under-investment in a Profitable Technology: The Case of Seasonal Migration in Bangladesh," NBER Working Papers 20172, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Kudo, Yuya, 2012. "Returns to migration : the role of educational attainment in rural Tanzania," IDE Discussion Papers 322, Institute of Developing Economies, Japan External Trade Organization(JETRO).
  10. Manjula Luthria, 2011. "Labor Mobility for the Poor : Is it Really Possible?," World Bank Other Operational Studies 10112, The World Bank.

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