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Labor Mobility Of Immigrants: Training, Experience, Language, And Opportunities

  • Sarit Cohen-Goldner
  • Zvi Eckstein

This article analyzes the labor mobility and human capital accumulation of male immigrants from the former Soviet Union to Israel. We estimate a dynamic choice model for employment and training in blue- and white-collar occupations, where the labor market randomly offered opportunities are affected by past choices. The estimated model accurately reproduces the patterns in the data. The estimated direct earning return to local training, local experience, and knowledge of Hebrew are very high, whereas imported skills have zero (conditional) return. The welfare gain from the impact of training on job offer probabilities is larger than its effect on wages. Copyright � 2008 the Economics Department of the University of Pennsylvania and the Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association.

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File URL: http://www.blackwell-synergy.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1468-2354.2008.00499.x
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Article provided by Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association in its journal International Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 49 (2008)
Issue (Month): 3 (08)
Pages: 837-872

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Handle: RePEc:ier:iecrev:v:49:y:2008:i:3:p:837-872
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  1. Borjas, George J, 1985. "Assimilation, Changes in Cohort Quality, and the Earnings of Immigrants," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 3(4), pages 463-89, October.
  2. Lalonde, Robert J. & Topel, Robert H., 1993. "Economic impact of international migration and the economic performance of migrants," Handbook of Population and Family Economics, in: M. R. Rosenzweig & Stark, O. (ed.), Handbook of Population and Family Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 14, pages 799-850 Elsevier.
  3. Paul W. Miller & Barry R. Chiswick, 1999. "Language skills and earnings among legalized aliens," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 63-89.
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  5. Michael P. Keane & Kenneth I. Wolpin, 1995. "The career decisions of young men," Working Papers 559, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  6. Eckstein, Z. & Weiss, Y., 1999. "The Integration of Immigrants from the Former Soviet Union in the Israeli Labor Market," Papers 33-99, Tel Aviv.
  7. Michael P. Keane & Kenneth I. Wolpin, 1994. "The solution and estimation of discrete choice dynamic programming models by simulation and interpolation: Monte Carlo evidence," Staff Report 181, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  8. Ham, John C & LaLonde, Robert J, 1996. "The Effect of Sample Selection and Initial Conditions in Duration Models: Evidence from Experimental Data on Training," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(1), pages 175-205, January.
  9. Daniel McFadden, 1987. "A Method of Simulated Moments for Estimation of Discrete Response Models Without Numerical Integration," Working papers 464, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  10. Yoram Weiss & Robert M. Sauer & Menachem Gotlibovski, 2003. "Immigration, Search, and Loss of Skill," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(3), pages 557-592, July.
  11. Rachel M. Friedberg, 1996. "You Can't Take It With You? Immigrant Assimilation and the Portability of Human Capital," NBER Working Papers 5837, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. George J. Borjas, 1994. "The Economics of Immigration," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 32(4), pages 1667-1717, December.
  13. Robert J. LaLonde, 1995. "The Promise of Public Sector-Sponsored Training Programs," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(2), pages 149-168, Spring.
  14. James J. Heckman & Jeffrey A. Smith, 1999. "The Pre-Program Earnings Dip and the Determinants of Participation in a Social Program: Implications for Simple Program Evaluation Strategies," NBER Working Papers 6983, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Zvi Eckstein & Kenneth I. Wolpin, 1999. "Why Youths Drop Out of High School: The Impact of Preferences, Opportunities, and Abilities," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 67(6), pages 1295-1340, November.
  16. Borjas, George J., 1999. "The economic analysis of immigration," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 28, pages 1697-1760 Elsevier.
  17. Eli Berman & Kevin Lang & Erez Siniver, 2000. "Language-Skill Complementarity: Returns to Immigrant Language Acquisition," NBER Working Papers 7737, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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