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Migration, Self-selection and Returns to Education in the WAEMU

  • Philippe De Vreyer

    ()

    (Université de Lille II, DIAL)

  • Flore Gubert

    ()

    (DIAL, IRD, Paris)

  • François Roubaud

    ()

    (DIAL, IRD)

(english) We use a unique set of identical labour force surveys that allow to observe, at the same time, migrants in seven WAEMU countries and their country of origin's labour market. We use these data first to document the patterns of migration flows in the sub-region, second to estimate the determinants of migration behaviour across these countries and to correct the estimated returns to education for the endogeneity of location choice. We finally estimate a structural model to evaluate the impact of expected earnings differentials on the probability of selecting a particular country to reside in. Our results show that Cote d'Ivoire remains the most important immigration country in the sub-region. Our data also suggests that Mali and Burkina Faso have been and still are major labour-exporting countries, largely towards Cote d'Ivoire. Benin and Togo, by contrast, combine both emigration and immigration. Looking at migrants characteristics we find that migrants tend to be less educated than non migrants in both their origin and destination countries, are more likely than natives to work in the informal sector and that they receive lower wages. Our econometric results suggest that not holding account of international migration in estimating returns to education yields upward biased estimates in three countries out of seven and downward biased estimates in two others. However, disparities in returns to education between capital cities do not vanish, suggesting that country-specific amenities and other un-measurable non-wage variables play important roles in the location choice of individuals with different levels of education. We also find that expected earnings differentials have a very significant effect on the choice probabilities: all else equal, people tend to live in countries in which their expected earnings are higher than elsewhere. _________________________________ (français) Nous utilisons les données issues d'enquêtes réalisées simultanément dans sept capitales de l'Union Economique et Monétaire Ouest Africaine pour documenter les caractéristiques des flux migratoires entre pays de l'Afrique de l'Ouest, puis pour estimer un modèle individuel de choix résidentiel faisant intervenir la différence de gains potentielle comme déterminant. Une estimation en trois étapes est réalisée qui permet de contrôler de l'auto-sélection des individus dans les différentes destinations. Nos résultats montrent que la Côte d'Ivoire demeure le premier pays d'accueil des migrants de la sous région, alors que le Burkina Faso et le Mali sont au contraire des pays d'émigration, principalement à destination de la Côte d'Ivoire. Le Bénin et le Togo sont à la fois des pays d'émigration et d'immigration. L'examen des caractéristiques des migrants montre qu'ils tendent à être moins éduqués que les non migrants, aussi bien dans leur pays d'origine que dans leur pays d'accueil, travaillent plus fréquemment dans le secteur informel et reçoivent une rémunération plus faible. Nos estimations économétriques montrent que la prise en compte de l'auto-sélection des individus dans les différentes destinations modifie les rendements estimés de l'éducation dans certains pays. Nous trouvons également que les différences de gains potentielles ont un impact très significatif sur les probabilités de choix et que, toutes autres choses égales par ailleurs, les individus tendent à vivre dans des pays où ils reçoivent des revenus plus élevés.

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File URL: http://www.dial.ird.fr/media/ird-sites-d-unites-de-recherche/dial/documents/publications/doc_travail/2007/2007-10
File Function: First version, 2007
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Paper provided by DIAL (Développement, Institutions et Mondialisation) in its series Working Papers with number DT/2007/10.

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Length: 40 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:dia:wpaper:dt200710
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  1. Schmertmann, Carl P., 1994. "Selectivity bias correction methods in polychotomous sample selection models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 60(1-2), pages 101-132.
  2. George J. Borjas, 1987. "Self-Selection and the Earnings of Immigrants," NBER Working Papers 2248, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Lee, Lung-Fei, 1983. "Generalized Econometric Models with Selectivity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 51(2), pages 507-12, March.
  4. Gordon B. Dahl, 2002. "Mobility and the Return to Education: Testing a Roy Model with Multiple Markets," RCER Working Papers 488, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  5. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521471626 is not listed on IDEAS
  6. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521477451 is not listed on IDEAS
  7. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521405515 is not listed on IDEAS
  8. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521477444 is not listed on IDEAS
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