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Self-selection among undocumented immigrants from Mexico

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  • Orrenius, Pia M.
  • Zavodny, Madeline

Abstract

This paper examines the effect of changes in migration determinants on the skill level of undocumented Mexican immigrants. We focus on the effect of changes in economic conditions, migrant networks, and border enforcement on the educational attainment of men who cross the border illegally. Results from hazard models using data from the Mexican Migration Project indicate that migrants are not negatively selected with regard to education. However, improvements in U.S. and Mexican economic conditions are associated with a decline in the average education of undocumented immigrants, while stricter border enforcement is associated with higher average skill levels.

Suggested Citation

  • Orrenius, Pia M. & Zavodny, Madeline, 2005. "Self-selection among undocumented immigrants from Mexico," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(1), pages 215-240, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:deveco:v:78:y:2005:i:1:p:215-240
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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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