IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Wage competition and the special-obligations challenge to more open borders


  • Arash Abizadeh

    (McGill University, Canada)

  • Manish Pandey

    (University of Winnipeg, Canada)

  • Sohrab Abizadeh

    (Carleton University, Canada)


According to the special-obligations challenge to the justice argument for more open borders, immigration restrictions to wealthier polities are justified because of special obligations owed to disadvantaged compatriots negatively impacted by the immigration of low-skilled foreign workers. We refute the special-obligations challenge by refuting its empirical premise and draw out the normative implications of the empirical evidence for border policies. We show that immigration to wealthier polities has negligible impact on domestic wages and that only previous cohorts of immigrants are adversely affected. The special-obligations challenge therefore succeeds only if special obligations owed to previous immigrants justify closing borders to further immigration; we argue that they do not.

Suggested Citation

  • Arash Abizadeh & Manish Pandey & Sohrab Abizadeh, 2015. "Wage competition and the special-obligations challenge to more open borders," Politics, Philosophy & Economics, , vol. 14(3), pages 255-269, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:pophec:v:14:y:2015:i:3:p:255-269

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:sae:pophec:v:14:y:2015:i:3:p:255-269. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (SAGE Publications). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.