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Understanding different migrant selection patterns in rural and urban Mexico

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  • Fernández-Huertas Moraga, Jesús

Abstract

The productive characteristics of migrating individuals, emigrant selection, affect welfare. The empirical estimation of the degree of selection suffers from a lack of complete and nationally representative data. This paper uses a dataset that addresses both issues: the ENET (Mexican Labor Survey), which identifies emigrants right before they leave and allows a direct comparison to non-migrants. This dataset presents a relevant dichotomy: it shows negative selection for urban Mexican emigrants to the United States for the period 2000–2004 together with positive selection in Mexican emigration out of rural Mexico to the United States in the same period. Three theories that could explain this dichotomy are tested. Whereas higher skill prices in Mexico than in the US are enough to explain half of the negative selection result in urban Mexico, its combination with network effects and wealth constraints fully accounts for positive selection in rural Mexico.

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  • Fernández-Huertas Moraga, Jesús, 2013. "Understanding different migrant selection patterns in rural and urban Mexico," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 103(C), pages 182-201.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:deveco:v:103:y:2013:i:c:p:182-201
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jdeveco.2013.02.005
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    Cited by:

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    2. Biavaschi, Costanza & Burzyński, Michał & Elsner, Benjamin & Machado, Joël, 2020. "Taking the skill bias out of global migration," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 142(C).
    3. Charles F Mason, 2017. "Climate Change and Migration: A Dynamic Model," CESifo Economic Studies, CESifo, vol. 63(4), pages 421-444.
    4. Bertoli, Simone & Stillman, Steven, 2019. "All that glitters is not gold: Wages and education for US immigrants," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(C).
    5. Alexander Patt & Jens Ruhose & Simon Wiederhold & Miguel Flores, 2021. "International Emigrant Selection on Occupational Skills," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 19(2), pages 1249-1298.
    6. Simone Bertoli & Hillel Rapoport, 2015. "Heaven's Swing Door: Endogenous Skills, Migration Networks, and the Effectiveness of Quality-Selective Immigration Policies," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 117(2), pages 565-591, April.
    7. Simone Bertoli & Francesca Marchetta, 2014. "Migration, Remittances and Poverty in Ecuador," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 50(8), pages 1067-1089, August.
    8. Isabelle Chort & Jean-Noël Senne, 2017. "Intra-household Selection into Migration: Evidence from a Matched Sample of Migrants and Origin Households in Senegal," PSE Working Papers hal-01516104, HAL.
    9. Biavaschi, Costanza & Elsner, Benjamin, 2013. "Let's Be Selective about Migrant Self-Selection," IZA Discussion Papers 7865, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    10. Bossavie, Laurent & Denisova, Anastasiya, 2018. "Youth Labor Migration in Nepal," Jobs Group Papers, Notes, and Guides 29783617, The World Bank.
    11. Fernández-Huertas Moraga, Jesús, 2013. "Understanding different migrant selection patterns in rural and urban Mexico," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 103(C), pages 182-201.
    12. Rosso, Anna, 2019. "Emigrant selection and wages: The case of Poland," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 148-175.
    13. Bertoli, Simone & Murard, Elie, 2020. "Migration and co-residence choices: Evidence from Mexico," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 142(C).
    14. Gröger, André, 2021. "Easy come, easy go? Economic shocks, labor migration and the family left behind," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 128(C).
    15. Cervellati, Matteo & Esposito, Elena & Sunde, Uwe & Yuan, Song, 2022. "Malaria and Chinese economic activities in Africa," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 154(C).
    16. Duncan, Alan & Harris, Mark N. & Mavisakalyan, Astghik & Nguyen, Toan, 2020. "Migration flows in commodity cycles: Assessing the role of migration policies," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 127(C).
    17. Anda David & Joachim Jarreau, 2017. "Migrating out of a crowded labor market: evidence from Egypt," IZA Journal of Migration and Development, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 7(1), pages 1-28, December.
    18. Isabelle Chort & Jean-Noël Senne, 2012. "Intra-household Selection into Migration : Evidence from a Matched Sample of Migrants and Origin Households in Senegal," Post-Print hal-01516775, HAL.
    19. Li Shan, 2020. "Rainfall and self-selection patterns in Mexico-US migration," IZA Journal of Development and Migration, Sciendo & Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 11(1), pages 1-32, January.
    20. Spitzer, Yannay & Zimran, Ariell, 2018. "Migrant self-selection: Anthropometric evidence from the mass migration of Italians to the United States, 1907–1925," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 134(C), pages 226-247.
    21. Vladimir Hlasny & Shireen AlAzzawi, 2020. "Return Migration and Earnings Mobility in Egypt, Jordan and Tunisia," Working Papers 562, ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    International migration; Selection; Wealth constraints; Household survey;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers
    • D33 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Factor Income Distribution

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