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The impact of forced displacement on host communities: A review of the empirical literature in economics

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  • Verme, Paolo
  • Schuettler, Kirsten

Abstract

The paper reviews 59 empirical studies that estimated the economic impact of forced displacement on host communities. A review of the empirical models used by these studies and a meta-analysis of 972 separate results collected from these studies are the main contributions of the paper. Coverage extends to 19 major forced displacement crises that occurred between 1922 and 2018, to host countries at different levels of economic development and different types of forced migrants. Results refer to outcomes related to employment, wages, prices and household well-being. All studies can be classified as ex-post quasi-natural experiments. The analysis on empirical modeling shows a preference for partial equilibrium modeling, differences-in-differences evaluation methods, and cross-section econometrics, with all these choices largely dependent on the type of data available. The meta-analysis finds that most results on employment and wages are non-significant. When significant, decreases in employment and wages are more likely to occur than increases with decreases strongly associated with the short-term, middle-income countries, females, young and informal workers. Food and rent prices tend to increase in the short-term but other prices may decrease. The probability of observing a decrease in household well-being among hosts is lower than 1 in 5.

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  • Verme, Paolo & Schuettler, Kirsten, 2021. "The impact of forced displacement on host communities: A review of the empirical literature in economics," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 150(C).
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:deveco:v:150:y:2021:i:c:s0304387820301814
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jdeveco.2020.102606
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Refugees; Returnees; Expellees; Escapees; Internally displaced persons (IDPs); Forced migration; Forced displacement; Host communities; Labor markets; Wages; Prices; Employment; Unemployment; Well-being;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity
    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • F66 - International Economics - - Economic Impacts of Globalization - - - Labor
    • J08 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General - - - Labor Economics Policies
    • J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics
    • J2 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor
    • J3 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs
    • J4 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets
    • J7 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination
    • J8 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Standards
    • N3 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
    • P46 - Economic Systems - - Other Economic Systems - - - Consumer Economics; Health; Education and Training; Welfare, Income, Wealth, and Poverty
    • R2 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis

    Statistics

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