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Temporary Work Visas as US-Haiti Development Cooperation: A Preliminary Impact Evaluation

Listed author(s):
  • Clemens, Michael A.

    ()

    (Center for Global Development)

  • Postel, Hannah M.

    ()

    (Center for Global Development)

Registered author(s):

    We report a small-sample, preliminary evaluation of the economic impact of temporary overseas work by Haitian agricultural workers. This work occurs in the United States in the context of a pilot program designed as a form of post-disaster development assistance to Haiti. We find that the effects of matching new seasonal agricultural jobs in the US with Haitian workers differs markedly from the effects of more traditional forms of assistance to Haiti, in three ways: The economic benefits are shared roughly equally between Haiti and the United States; these benefits are very large, including raising the value of Haitian workers' labor by a multiple of fifteen; and the portion of the benefits accruing to Haiti is uncommonly well targeted for the direct benefit of poor Haitian households. We discuss implementation challenges faced by the program and the potential for policies of this kind to complement more traditional forms of development and humanitarian assistance.

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    Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 10548.

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    Length: 30 pages
    Date of creation: Feb 2017
    Publication status: forthcoming in: IZA Journal of Development and Migration
    Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp10548
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    1. World Bank & Observatoire National de la Pauvreté et de l’Exclusion Sociale, 2014. "Investing in People to Fight Poverty in Haiti : Reflections for Evidence-based Policy Making," World Bank Other Operational Studies 21519, The World Bank.
    2. Michael Clemens, 2013. "The Effect of Foreign Labor on Native Employment: A Job-Specific Approach and Application to North Carolina Farms- Working Paper 326," Working Papers 326, Center for Global Development.
    3. Mario Liebensteiner, 2012. "Estimating the Income Gain of Seasonal Labour Migration," WIFO Working Papers 430, WIFO.
    4. Royce Bernstein Murray and Sarah Petrin Williamson, 2011. "Migration as a Tool for Disaster Recovery: A Case Study on U.S. Policy Options for Post-Earthquake Haiti - Working Paper 255," Working Papers 255, Center for Global Development.
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