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Self-selection patterns in Mexico-U.S. migration : the role of migration networks

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  • McKenzie, David
  • Rapoport, Hillel

Abstract

The authors examine the role of migration networks in determining self-selection patterns of Mexico-U.S. migration. They first present a simple theoretical framework showing how such networks impact on migration incentives at different education levels and, consequently, how they are likely to affect the expected skill composition of migration. Using survey data from Mexico, the authors then show that the probability of migration is increasing with education in communities with low migrant networks, but decreasing with education in communities with high migrant networks. This is consistent with positive self-selection of migrants being driven by high migration costs, and with negative self-selection of migrants being driven by lower returns to education in the U.S. than in Mexico.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 4118.

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Date of creation: 01 Feb 2007
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Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:4118

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Keywords: Population Policies; Voluntary and Involuntary Resettlement; Human Migrations&Resettlements; Anthropology; Technology Industry;

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References

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  1. George J. Borjas, 1988. "Self-Selection and the Earnings of Immigrants," NBER Working Papers 2248, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. McKenzie, David & Rapoport, Hillel, 2006. "Can migration reduce educational attainment ? Evidence from Mexico," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3952, The World Bank.
  3. Bauer, Thomas K. & Epstein, Gil S. & Gang, Ira N., 2002. "Herd Effects or Migration Networks? The Location Choice of Mexican Immigrants in the U.S," IZA Discussion Papers 551, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Paul Winters & Alain de Janvry & Elisabeth Sadoulet, 2001. "Family and Community Networks in Mexico-U.S. Migration," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 36(1), pages 159-184.
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  22. David J. McKenzie & Nicole Hildebrandt, 2005. "The Effects of Migration on Child Health in Mexico," Journal of LACEA Economia, LACEA - LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION.
  23. Kossoudji, S.A. & Cobb-Clark, D.A., 1996. "Coming Out of the Shadows: Learning About Legal Status and Wages from the Legalized Population," CEPR Discussion Papers 347, Centre for Economic Policy Research, Research School of Economics, Australian National University.
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