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Migration from Ukraine: Brawn or Brain? New Survey Evidence

  • Commander, Simon

    ()

    (IE Business School, Altura Partners)

  • Nikolaychuk, Olexandr

    ()

    (CERGE-EI)

  • Vikhrov, Dmytro

    ()

    (CERGE-EI)

We study selection and labour market outcomes among Ukrainian migrants using unique data from a survey conducted in Ukraine in August – October 2011. We find that migrants are positively selected in terms of age and education. Yet, this is not associated, as might be expected, with their labour market outcomes. Notably, around half of the migrants are employed in occupations for which they are over-qualified. We conjecture that this downshifting in occupation can partly be explained by the absence of the conventional link between education and skills in Ukraine. To circumvent this problem, we compare pre- and post-migration labour market outcomes and find that the probability of downshifting decreases with the duration of stay in a foreign country and knowledge of the local language or English. Significantly, someone who downshifted prior to migration in the home country was more likely to downshift abroad. Further, we find that migrants to the EU are more likely to downshift when compared to other destinations.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 7348.

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Length: 25 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp7348
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  1. Daniel Chiquiar & Gordon H. Hanson, 2005. "International Migration, Self-Selection, and the Distribution of Wages: Evidence from Mexico and the United States," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(2), pages 239-281, April.
  2. Heckman, James, 2013. "Sample selection bias as a specification error," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 31(3), pages 129-137.
  3. Weiping Kostenko & Mark Harris & Xueyan Zhao, 2009. "Occupational Transition and Country-of-Origin Effects in the Early Stage Occupational Assimilation of Immigrants: Some Evidence from Australia," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2009n20, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.
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  8. Thomas Turner, 2010. "The jobs immigrants do: issues of displacement and marginalisation in the Irish labour market," Work, Employment & Society, British Sociological Association, vol. 24(2), pages 318-336, June.
  9. John Gibson & David Mckenzie, 2010. "The Economic Consequences of ‘Brain Drain’ of the Best and Brightest: Microeconomic Evidence from Five Countries," Working Papers in Economics 10/05, University of Waikato, Department of Economics.
  10. Batista, Catia & Lacuesta, Aitor & Vicente, Pedro C., 2010. "Testing the 'Brain Gain' Hypothesis: Micro Evidence from Cape Verde," IZA Discussion Papers 5048, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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  13. David McKenzie & Hillel Rapoport, 2007. "Self-selection patterns in Mexico-U.S. migration: The role of migration networks," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 0701, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  14. Adsera, Alicia & Chiswick, Barry R., 2004. "Are There Gender and Country of Origin Differences in Immigrant Labor Market Outcomes across European Destinations?," IZA Discussion Papers 1432, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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  16. Bhagwati, Jagdish & Hamada, Koichi, 1974. "The brain drain, international integration of markets for professionals and unemployment : A theoretical analysis," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 19-42, April.
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  18. repec:ecj:econjl:v:122:y:2012:i::p:339-375 is not listed on IDEAS
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