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And What About the Family Back Home? International Migration and Happiness

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Author Info

  • Fernando Borraz

    (Universidad de Montevideo)

  • Susan Pozo

    (Western Michigan University)

  • Máximo Rossi

    (Departamento de Economía, Facultad de Ciencias Sociales, Universidad de la República)

Abstract

In this study we use data on subjective well being and migration in Cuenca, one of the Ecuador's largest cities. We examine the impact of migration on the happiness of the family left behind. We use the propensity score matching estimator to take into account the endogeneity of migration. Our results indicate that migration reduces the happiness of those left behind. We also find that the monetary inflows (remittances) that accompany migration do not increase happiness levels among recipients. These results suggest that the family left behind cannot be compensated, for the increase in unhappiness that it sustains on account of the emigration of loved ones, with remittances from abroad.

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File URL: http://decon.edu.uy/publica/2008/0308.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics - dECON in its series Documentos de Trabajo (working papers) with number 0308.

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Length: 24 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ude:wpaper:0308

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Keywords: Happiness; migration; remittances;

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References

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  1. 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.
  2. Daniel Miles & Maximo Rossi, 2007. "Learning about one's relative position and subjective well-being," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 39(13), pages 1711-1718.
  3. Ximena Soruco & Giorgina Piani & Máximo Rossi, 2008. "What Emigration Leaves Behind: The Situation of Emigrants and their Families in Ecuador," Research Department Publications 3244, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
  4. Blanchflower, David G. & Oswald, Andrew J., 2001. "Well-Being Over Time in Britain and the USA," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 616, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  5. Clark, Andrew E & Oswald, Andrew J, 1994. "Unhappiness and Unemployment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(424), pages 648-59, May.
  6. David Card, 2005. "Is the New Immigration Really So Bad?," NBER Working Papers 11547, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Barbara Sianesi, 2001. "Propensity score matching," United Kingdom Stata Users' Group Meetings 2001, Stata Users Group 12, Stata Users Group, revised 23 Aug 2001.
  8. Joop Hartog & Hessel Oosterbeek, 1997. "Health, Wealth and Happiness: Why pursue a Higher Education?," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 97-034/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  9. Chiswick, Barry R, 1991. "Speaking, Reading, and Earnings among Low-Skilled Immigrants," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 9(2), pages 149-70, April.
  10. Edwin Leuven & Barbara Sianesi, 2003. "PSMATCH2: Stata module to perform full Mahalanobis and propensity score matching, common support graphing, and covariate imbalance testing," Statistical Software Components S432001, Boston College Department of Economics, revised 12 Feb 2014.
  11. George J. Borjas, 2002. "Homeownership in the Immigrant Population," NBER Working Papers 8945, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Carol Graham & Stefano Pettinato, 2001. "Happiness, Markets, and Democracy: Latin America in Comparative Perspective," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, Springer, vol. 2(3), pages 237-268, September.
  13. Easterlin, Richard A, 2001. "Income and Happiness: Towards an Unified Theory," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, Royal Economic Society, vol. 111(473), pages 465-84, July.
  14. James P. Smith, 2003. "Assimilation across the Latino Generations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(2), pages 315-319, May.
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Cited by:
  1. Cid, Alejandro & Ferrés, Daniel & Rossi, Máximo, 2008. "Subjective Well-Being in the Southen Cone: Health, Income and Family," MPRA Paper 39909, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Michael Clemens and Timothy N. Ogden, 2014. "Migration as a Strategy for Household Finance: A Research Agenda on Remittances, Payments, and Development- Working Paper 354," Working Papers, Center for Global Development 354, Center for Global Development.
  3. Steven Stillman & John Gibson & David McKenzie & Halahingano Rohorua, 2012. "Miserable Migrants? Natural Experiment Evidence on International Migration and Objective and Subjective Well-Being," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 1228, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  4. David Bartram, 2011. "Economic Migration and Happiness: Comparing Immigrants’ and Natives’ Happiness Gains From Income," Social Indicators Research, Springer, Springer, vol. 103(1), pages 57-76, August.
  5. Akay, Alpaslan & Giulietti, Corrado & Robalino, Juan David & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2012. "Remittances and Well-Being among Rural-to-Urban Migrants in China," IZA Discussion Papers 6631, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Betz, William & Simpson, Nicole B., 2013. "The Effects of International Migration on the Well-Being of Native Populations in Europe," IZA Discussion Papers 7368, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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