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The Impacts of International Migration on Remaining Household Members: Omnibus Results from a Migration Lottery Program

  • John Gibson

    (University of Waikato)

  • David McKenzie

    (Development Research Group, World Bank)

  • Steven Stillman

    (Motu Economic and Public Policy Research)

We use a migration lottery program to overcome the double-selectivity problems posed by migration. We compare a wide range of outcomes for the remaining household members of Tongan emigrants with those of members of similar households who were unsuccessful in the lottery, with the policy rules determining which household members can move. Multiple hypothesis testing procedures are used to examine robustness. The overall impact on households left behind is largely negative in terms of resource availability, and both sources of selectivity matter, leading studies that fail to address them adequately to misrepresent the impact of migration on households. © 2011 The President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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Article provided by MIT Press in its journal Review of Economics and Statistics.

Volume (Year): 93 (2011)
Issue (Month): 4 (November)
Pages: 1297-1318

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Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:93:y:2011:i:4:p:1297-1318
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  1. Dean Yang, 2008. "International Migration, Remittances and Household Investment: Evidence from Philippine Migrants' Exchange Rate Shocks," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 118(528), pages 591-630, 04.
  2. David McKenzie & John Gibson & Steven Stillman, 2006. "Migration and mental health: Evidence from a natural experiment," Natural Field Experiments 00334, The Field Experiments Website.
  3. Angrist, Joshua, 2003. "Treatment Effect Heterogeneity in Theory and Practice," IZA Discussion Papers 851, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Mansuri, Ghazala, 2006. "Migration,sex bias, and child growth in rural Pakistan," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3946, The World Bank.
  5. Mckenzie, David & Rapoport, Hillel, 2007. "Network effects and the dynamics of migration and inequality: Theory and evidence from Mexico," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(1), pages 1-24, September.
  6. Funkhouser, Edward, 1992. "Migration from Nicaragua: some recent evidence," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 20(8), pages 1209-1218, August.
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  8. Barham, Bradford & Boucher, Stephen, 1998. "Migration, remittances, and inequality: estimating the net effects of migration on income distribution," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 307-331, April.
  9. Rapoport, Hillel & Docquier, Frédéric, 2005. "The Economics of Migrants’ Remittances," IZA Discussion Papers 1531, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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  11. Richard P.C. Brown & Gareth Leeves, 2007. "Impacts of International Migration and Remittances," Discussion Papers Series 347, School of Economics, University of Queensland, Australia.
  12. McKenzie, David & Rapoport, Hillel, 2006. "Can migration reduce educational attainment ? Evidence from Mexico," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3952, The World Bank.
  13. Richard P.C. Brown & Gareth Leeves, 2007. "Impacts of International Migration and Remittances on Source Country Household Incomes in Small Island States; Fiji and Tonga," Working Papers 07-13, Agricultural and Development Economics Division of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO - ESA).
  14. James Heckman & Neil Hohmann & Jeffrey Smith & Michael Khoo, 2000. "Substitution and Dropout Bias in Social Experiments: A Study of an Influential Social Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 115(2), pages 651-694.
  15. Acosta, Pablo, 2006. "Labor supply, school attendance, and remittances from international migration : the case of El Salvador," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3903, The World Bank.
  16. David J. McKenzie & Nicole Hildebrandt, 2005. "The Effects of Migration on Child Health in Mexico," ECONOMIA JOURNAL OF THE LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION, ECONOMIA JOURNAL OF THE LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION, vol. 0(Fall 2005), pages 257-289, August.
  17. Claudia Martínez Alvear & Dean Yang, 2007. "Remittances and Poverty in Migrants’ Home Areas: Evidence from the Philippines," Working Papers wp257, University of Chile, Department of Economics.
  18. Jeffrey R. Kling & Jeffrey B. Liebman, 2004. "Experimental Analysis of Neighborhood Effects on Youth," Working Papers 1, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  19. David McKenzie & John Gibson & Steven Stillman, 2007. "Moving to opportunity, leaving behind what? Evaluating the initial effects of a migration policy on incomes and poverty in source areas," New Zealand Economic Papers, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 41(2), pages 197-223.
  20. Jeffrey R. Kling & Jeffrey B. Liebman & Lawrence F. Katz, 2005. "Experimental Analysis of Neighborhood Effects," NBER Working Papers 11577, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. Woodruff, Christopher & Zenteno, Rene, 2007. "Migration networks and microenterprises in Mexico," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 82(2), pages 509-528, March.
  22. John Gibson & David McKenzie & Halahingano Rohorua, 2006. "How Cost Elastic are Remittances? Estimates from Tongan Migrants in New Zealand," Working Papers in Economics 06/02, University of Waikato, Department of Economics.
  23. Acosta, Pablo & Fajnzylber, Pablo & Lopez, J. Humberto, 2007. "The impact of remittances on poverty and human capital : evidence from Latin American household surveys," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4247, The World Bank.
  24. Chen, Joyce J., 2013. "Identifying non-cooperative behavior among spouses: Child outcomes in migrant-sending households," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 100(1), pages 1-18.
  25. Stark, Oded & Taylor, J Edward & Yitzhaki, Shlomo, 1986. "Remittances and Inequality," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 96(383), pages 722-40, September.
  26. Edwards, Alejandra Cox & Ureta, Manuelita, 2003. "International migration, remittances, and schooling: evidence from El Salvador," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(2), pages 429-461, December.
  27. Catalina Amuedo-Dorantes & Susan Pozo, 2006. "Migration, Remittances, and Male and Female Employment Patterns," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(2), pages 222-226, May.
  28. Adams, Richard H, Jr, 1998. "Remittances, Investment, and Rural Asset Accumulation in Pakistan," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 47(1), pages 155-73, October.
  29. repec:pri:indrel:dsp01m613mx58m is not listed on IDEAS
  30. repec:dau:papers:123456789/5837 is not listed on IDEAS
  31. Kling, Jeffrey & Liebman, Jeffrey, 2004. "Experimental Analysis of Neighborhood Effects on Youth," Working Paper Series rwp04-034, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
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