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A positive analysis of immigration policy


  • G. Bellettini
  • C. Berti Ceroni


This paper studies the determinants of immigration policy in an economy with entrepreneurs and workers where a trade union has monopoly power over wages. The presence of the union leads a benevolent government to implement a high level of immigration and induces a welfare loss not only from an aggregate point of view, but even from the point of view of workers. In the politico-economic equilibrium where interest groups lobby for immigration, we show the condition under which workers are no longer hurt by the presence of the union.

Suggested Citation

  • G. Bellettini & C. Berti Ceroni, 2004. "A positive analysis of immigration policy," Working Papers 520, Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna.
  • Handle: RePEc:bol:bodewp:520

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Giorgio Bellettini & Gianmarco I. P. Ottaviano, 2005. "Special Interests and Technological Change," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 72(1), pages 43-56.
    2. J. Amegashie, 2004. "A political economy model of immigration quotas," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 5(3), pages 255-267, November.
    3. B. Douglas Bernheim & Michael D. Whinston, 1986. "Menu Auctions, Resource Allocation, and Economic Influence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 101(1), pages 1-31.
    4. Grossman, Gene M & Helpman, Elhanan, 1994. "Protection for Sale," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(4), pages 833-850, September.
    5. Dixit, Avinash & Grossman, Gene M & Helpman, Elhanan, 1997. "Common Agency and Coordination: General Theory and Application to Government Policy Making," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(4), pages 752-769, August.
    6. Timothy J. Hatton & Jeffrey G. Williamson, 2004. "International Migration in the Long-Run: Positive Selection, Negative Selection and Policy," NBER Working Papers 10529, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. O'Rourke, Kevin H. & Sinnott, Richard, 2006. "The determinants of individual attitudes towards immigration," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 838-861, December.
    8. Gil Epstein & Shmuel Nitzan, 2006. "The struggle over migration policy," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 19(4), pages 703-723, October.
    9. Andreas Irmen & Berthold U. Wigger, 2002. "Trade Union Objectives and Economic Growth," FinanzArchiv: Public Finance Analysis, Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 59(1), pages 1-49, February.
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    Cited by:

    1. Facchini, Giovanni & Mayda, Anna Maria & Mishra, Prachi, 2011. "Do interest groups affect US immigration policy?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(1), pages 114-128, September.

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