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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

We analyze self-selection of refugees and irregular migrants and test our theory in the context of the European refugee crisis. 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. Refugees and female irregular migrants are positively self-selected with respect to human capital, while male irregular migrants are negatively self-selected. These patterns are similar when analyzing individually stated main reason to emigrate, country-level conflict intensity, and sub-regional conflict intensity. Migrants respond to economic incentives and border policies.

Suggested Citation

  • Cevat Giray Aksoy & Panu Poutvaara, 2020. "Refugees’ and Irregular Migrants’ Self-selection into Europe: Who Migrates Where?," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 1069, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  • Handle: RePEc:diw:diwsop:diw_sp1069
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    Cited by:

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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. 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.
    6. 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.
    7. 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".
    8. 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.
    9. 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].
    10. 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).
    11. 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).
    12. 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.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    international migration; refugees; irregular migrants; self-selection; human capital; gender differences in migration;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; 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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