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Refugees' and Irregular Migrants' Self-Selection into Europe: Who Migrates Where?

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  • Cevat Giray Aksoy
  • Panu Poutvaara

Abstract

About 1.4 million refugees and irregular migrants arrived in Europe in 2015 and 2016. We model how refugees and irregular migrants are self-selected. Using unique datasets from the International Organization for Migration and Gallup World Polls, we provide the first large-scale evidence on reasons to emigrate, and the self-selection and sorting of refugees and irregular migrants for multiple origin and destination countries. Refugees and female irregular migrants are positively self-selected with respect to education, while male irregular migrants are not. We also find that both male and female migrants from major conflict countries are positively self-selected in terms of their predicted income. For countries with minor or no conflict, migrant and non-migrant men do not differ in terms of their income distribution, while women who emigrate are positively self-selected. We also analyze how border controls affect destination country choice.

Suggested Citation

  • Cevat Giray Aksoy & Panu Poutvaara, 2019. "Refugees' and Irregular Migrants' Self-Selection into Europe: Who Migrates Where?," CESifo Working Paper Series 7781, CESifo.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_7781
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    2. Platt, Lucinda & Polavieja, Javier & Radl, Jonas, 2022. "Which Integration Policies Work? The Heterogeneous Impact of National Institutions on Immigrants’ Labor Market Attainment in Europe," EconStor Open Access Articles and Book Chapters, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, vol. 56(2), pages 344-375.
    3. Lea-Maria Löbel & Hannes Kröger & Ana Nanette Tibubos, 2021. "Social Isolation and Loneliness in the Context of Migration: A Cross-Sectional Study of Refugees, Migrants, and the Native Population in Germany," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 1124, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    4. Micevska, Maja, 2021. "Revisiting forced migration: A machine learning perspective," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 70(C).
    5. Courtney Brell & Christian Dustmann & Ian Preston, 2020. "The Labor Market Integration of Refugee Migrants in High-Income Countries," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 34(1), pages 94-121, Winter.
    6. Brücker, Herbert & Deuster, Christoph & Fendel, Tanja & Jaschke, Philipp & Keita, Sekou & Freitas Monteiro, Teresa, 2021. "Nach der Machtübernahme der Taliban in Afghanistan: Erfahrungen aus der Vergangenheit und erste Einschätzungen der Folgen für Migration und Integration," IAB-Forschungsbericht 202109, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
    7. Martinez Flores, Fernanda & Milusheva, Sveta & Reichert, Arndt R., 2021. "Climate anomalies and international migration: A disaggregated analysis for West Africa," Ruhr Economic Papers 910, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
    8. Heidland, Tobias & Jannsen, Nils & Groll, Dominik & Kalweit, René & Boockmann, Bernhard, 2021. "Analyse und Prognose von Migrationsbewegungen," Kieler Beiträge zur Wirtschaftspolitik 34, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW Kiel).
    9. Platt, Lucinda & Polavieja, Javier & Radl, Jonas, 2022. "Which integration policies work? The heterogeneous impact of national institutions on immigrants’ labor market attainment in Europe," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 110955, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    10. Tim Hatton, 2020. "European asylum policy before and after the migration crisis," IZA World of Labor, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA), pages 480-480, September.
    11. Giacomo Battiston, 2022. "Rescue on Stage: Border Enforcement and Public Attention in the Mediterranean Sea," "Marco Fanno" Working Papers 0292, Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche "Marco Fanno".
    12. Nicolás Ajzenman & Cevat Giray Aksoy & Sergei Guriev, 2020. "Exposure to Transit Migration, Public Attitudes and Entrepreneurship," Department of Economics Working Papers wp_gob_2020_02, Universidad Torcuato Di Tella.
    13. Amenta, Carlo & Di Betta, Paolo & Ferrara, Calogero, 2021. "The migrant crisis in the Mediterranean Sea: Empirical evidence on policy interventions," Socio-Economic Planning Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 78(C).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    refugees; self-selection; human capital; predicted income;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration

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