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Individual Attitudes Towards Skilled Migration: An Empirical Analysis Across Countries

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  • Giovanni Facchini
  • Anna Maria Mayda

Abstract

It is commonly argued that skilled immigration benefits the destination country through several channels. Yet, only a small group of countries reports to have policies in place aimed at increasing the intake of skilled immigrants. Why? In this paper we analyze the factors that affect a direct measure of individual attitudes towards skilled migration, focusing on two main channels: the labor market and the welfare state. We find that more educated natives are less likely to favor skilled immigration - consistent with the labor-market channel - while richer people are more likely to do so - in accordance with the welfare state channel under the tax adjustment model. Our findings thus suggest that the labor market competition threat perceived by skilled natives in the host countries might be driving the observed cautious policies.
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Suggested Citation

  • Giovanni Facchini & Anna Maria Mayda, 2012. "Individual Attitudes Towards Skilled Migration: An Empirical Analysis Across Countries," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 35(2), pages 183-196, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:worlde:v:35:y:2012:i:2:p:183-196
    DOI: j.1467-9701.2011.01427.x
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1111/j.1467-9701.2011.01427.x
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Giovanni Peri & Francesc Ortega, 2009. "The Causes and Effects of International Migrations: Evidence from OECD Countries 1980-2005," Working Papers 78, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
    2. Anna Maria Mayda, 2006. "Who Is Against Immigration? A Cross-Country Investigation of Individual Attitudes toward Immigrants," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 88(3), pages 510-530, August.
    3. Dustmann Christian & Preston Ian P, 2007. "Racial and Economic Factors in Attitudes to Immigration," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 7(1), pages 1-41, November.
    4. Kenneth F. Scheve & Matthew J. Slaughter, 2001. "Labor Market Competition And Individual Preferences Over Immigration Policy," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 83(1), pages 133-145, February.
    5. Tommaso Frattini, 2012. "Immigrazione," Rivista di Politica Economica, SIPI Spa, issue 3, pages 363-407, July-Sept.
    6. William R. Kerr & William F. Lincoln, 2010. "The Supply Side of Innovation: H-1B Visa Reforms and U.S. Ethnic Invention," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 28(3), pages 473-508, July.
    7. Hainmueller, Jens & Hiscox, Michael J., 2007. "Educated Preferences: Explaining Attitudes Toward Immigration in Europe," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 61(2), pages 399-442, April.
    8. Facchini, Giovanni & Mayda, Anna Maria, 2006. "Individual Attitudes Towards Immigrants: Welfare-State Determinants Across Countries," CEPR Discussion Papers 5702, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    9. Christian Dustmann & Ian Preston, 2004. "Is Immigration Good or Bad for the Economy? Analysis of Attitudinal Responses," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 0406, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
    10. O'Rourke, Kevin H. & Sinnott, Richard, 2006. "The determinants of individual attitudes towards immigration," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 838-861, December.
    11. Holger Bonin & Bernd Raffelhüschen & Jan Walliser, 2000. "Can Immigration Alleviate the Demographic Burden?," FinanzArchiv: Public Finance Analysis, Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 57(1), pages 1-21, September.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers

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