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International Migration and World Development: A Historical Perspective

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  • Timothy J. Hatton
  • Jeffrey G. Williamson

Abstract

The 1920s marked the end of a century of mass migration from Europe to the New World. This paper examines analytically this pre-quota experience. The discussion is divided into two parts. The first deals with the character and dimensions of overseas emigration from Europe chiefly from the mid 19th century to World War I. The second discussions the effects of these migrations on both sending and receiving countries. The traditional literature has far more to say about the first than the second. Here we deal with the evolution of global labor markets, first as they were directly influenced by the migrations, and second as they interacted with the evolution of world commodity and capital markets. The paper argues that the impressive economic convergence which took place between 1870 and World War I can be largely explained by these forces of economic integration, rather than by technological convergence or differential human capital growth.

Suggested Citation

  • Timothy J. Hatton & Jeffrey G. Williamson, 1992. "International Migration and World Development: A Historical Perspective," NBER Historical Working Papers 0041, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberhi:0041
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    Cited by:

    1. Horst Siebert, 1993. "Internationale Wanderungsbewegungen - Erklärungsansätze und Gestaltungsfragen," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 129(III), pages 229-255, September.
    2. Claudia Goldin, 1994. "The Political Economy of Immigration Restriction in the United States, 1890 to 1921," NBER Chapters,in: The Regulated Economy: A Historical Approach to Political Economy, pages 223-258 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Barry Eichengreen., 1994. "Deja Vu All Over Again: Lessons from the Gold Standard for European Monetary Unification," Center for International and Development Economics Research (CIDER) Working Papers C94-032, University of California at Berkeley.
    4. Djajić, Slobodan & Vinogradova, Alexandra, 2014. "Liquidity-constrained migrants," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(1), pages 210-224.
    5. Harry Clarke, 1995. "International labor-cum-capital migrations: Theory, welfare implications, and evidence," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 6(4), pages 323-340, October.
    6. P. J. Lloyd, 1993. "Global Integration," Australian Economic Review, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, vol. 26(1), pages 35-48.
    7. A. Gentili, 2013. "Migration Costs and Networks: household optimal investment in migration," Working Papers wp867, Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna.
    8. Gordon, Robert J, 2000. "Interpreting the 'One Big Wave' in US Long-Term Productivity Growth," CEPR Discussion Papers 2608, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    9. Robert J. Gordon, 2000. "Interpreting the "One Big Wave" in U.S. Long-Term Productivity Growth," NBER Working Papers 7752, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Leamer, Edward E. & Levinsohn, James, 1995. "International trade theory: The evidence," Handbook of International Economics,in: G. M. Grossman & K. Rogoff (ed.), Handbook of International Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 26, pages 1339-1394 Elsevier.
    11. Zhang, Xinxin & Van der Sluis, Evert, 2006. "U.S. Agricultural Labor Out-migration Determinants, 1939-2004," 2006 Annual meeting, July 23-26, Long Beach, CA 21412, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    12. Michael D. Bordo & Barry Eichengreen & Douglas A. Irwin, 1999. "Is Globalization Today Really Different than Globalization a Hunderd Years Ago?," NBER Working Papers 7195, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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