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Migration, Skills and Productivity

Author

Listed:
  • Robert Hierländer
  • Peter Huber
  • Anna Iara
  • Michael Landesmann

    () (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw)

  • Klaus Nowotny
  • Mary O'Mahony
  • Fei Peng
  • Catherine Robinson
  • Robert Stehrer

    () (The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw)

Abstract

The literature on international migration has repeatedly emphasized that the extent and structure of migration has an important impact on the competitiveness of regions and countries. This report provides an overview of the extent and the potential effects of high-skill migration to the EU27. It shows how many high-skilled migrants live in the EU, where these migrants come from, and how the European Union is positioned in the international competition for talent. Second, we examine how high-skilled migrants fare in European labour markets. Finally we address the issue of the effects of high-skill migration on multifactor productivity, gross value added and GDP per capita growth as well as patenting activities at the sectoral and regional levels. We find that - despite substantial heterogeneity among individual EU countries - high-skilled foreign-born are an important source for high-skilled labour in the EU27. There was some evidence that - on average - EU OECD economies (EU) had a lower share of highly qualified migrants than the (arithmetic) average of the (high migration) non-EU OECD economies. However, our results also suggest that this increasing selectivity of immigration regimes is countered by a relatively low qualification structure of short-term migrants in the EU. A second important policy relevant finding of this study is that high-skilled migrants in the EU face a number of challenges when entering the European labour market, that make them distinct from other migrant groups such as less skilled migrants. In particular the high-skilled migrants - in contrast to less skilled migrants - have lower labour market participation rates, higher unemployment rates and lower employment rates than comparable natives and face substantially higher risks of being employed in jobs that do not fit their skill structure. Our analysis regarding the impact of migration and of high-skilled migration in particular on sectoral productivity and gross value added (levels and growth) yielded a number of interesting results though still being preliminary. Particularly interesting was the difference of the impact of the share of migrants in levels and growth specifications, as well as the importance of a break-down by different groups of migrants (from EU and RoW). There was also a relatively robust result of a positive impact of the share of high-skill migrants and of an interactive effect of high-skill migrant share and ICT technology. As regards the analysis of migrants and regional growth and regional technological development (proxied by patents per capita) we found a positive relationship between the share of high-skilled employed persons and of high-skilled migrants and the growth rate of regional GDP per capita.

Suggested Citation

  • Robert Hierländer & Peter Huber & Anna Iara & Michael Landesmann & Klaus Nowotny & Mary O'Mahony & Fei Peng & Catherine Robinson & Robert Stehrer, 2010. "Migration, Skills and Productivity," wiiw Research Reports 365, The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw.
  • Handle: RePEc:wii:rpaper:rr:365
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Mari Kangasniemi & Matilde Mas & Catherine Robinson & Lorenzo Serrano, 2012. "The economic impact of migration: productivity analysis for Spain and the UK," Journal of Productivity Analysis, Springer, vol. 38(3), pages 333-343, December.
    2. Peter Huber & Gabriele Tondl, 2012. "Migration and regional convergence in the European Union," Empirica, Springer;Austrian Institute for Economic Research;Austrian Economic Association, vol. 39(4), pages 439-460, November.
    3. Stefan Jestl & Michael Landesmann & Sandra M. Leitner, 2015. "Migrants and Natives in EU Labour Markets: Mobility and Job-Skill Mismatch Patterns," wiiw Research Reports 403, The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw.
    4. Nathan, Max, 2013. "The Wider Economic Impacts of High-Skilled Migrants: A Survey of the Literature," IZA Discussion Papers 7653, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    5. LSE Enterprise,, 2011. "Study on the impact of the single market on cohesion: implications for cohesion policy, growth and competitiveness," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 42840, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    6. Matloob Piracha & Florin Vadean, 2013. "Migrant educational mismatch and the labor market," Chapters,in: International Handbook on the Economics of Migration, chapter 9, pages 176-192 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    7. repec:wfo:wstudy:46883 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Max Nathan, 2014. "The wider economic impacts of high-skilled migrants: a survey of the literature for receiving countries," IZA Journal of Migration and Development, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 3(1), pages 1-20, December.
    9. Thomas Horvath & Peter Huber, 2013. "The impact of networks, segregation and diversity on migrants' labour market integration," WWWforEurope Working Papers series 22, WWWforEurope.
    10. Michael Landesmann & Sandra M. Leitner & Isilda Mara, 2015. "Intra-EU Mobility and Push and Pull Factors in EU Labour Markets: Estimating a Panel VAR Model," wiiw Working Papers 120, The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw.
    11. Nowotny, Klaus, 2013. "Institutions and the Location Decisions of Highly Skilled Migrants to Europe," Working Papers in Economics 2013-3, University of Salzburg.
    12. repec:wfo:wstudy:42955 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Klaus Nowotny, 2016. "Are Overqualified Migrants Self-Selected? Evidence from Central and Eastern European Countries," Journal of Human Capital, University of Chicago Press, vol. 10(3), pages 303-346.
    14. repec:wfo:monber:y:2017:i:7 is not listed on IDEAS
    15. repec:wfo:wstudy:57885 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. Bonin, Holger, 2017. "The Potential Economic Benefits of Education of Migrants in the EU," IZA Research Reports 75, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    17. Kosta Josifidis & John Hall & Valérie Berenger & Novica Supić, 2013. "Eastern Migrations vs Western Welfare States – (Un)Biased Fears," Panoeconomicus, Savez ekonomista Vojvodine, Novi Sad, Serbia, vol. 60(3), pages 323-345, May.
    18. Andreas Reinstaller & Isabel Stadler & Fabian Unterlass, 2012. "Mobility of University Research Staff in the EU and Austria," WIFO Monatsberichte (monthly reports), WIFO, vol. 85(2), pages 105-119, February.
    19. repec:wfo:monber:y:2017:i:7:p:581-588 is not listed on IDEAS
    20. Guschanski, Alexander & Onaran, Özlem, 2017. "The political economy of income distribution: industry level evidence from 14 OECD countries," Greenwich Papers in Political Economy 17518, University of Greenwich, Greenwich Political Economy Research Centre.
    21. Werner Eichhorst & Corrado Giulietti & Martin Guzi & Michael J. Kendzia & Paola Monti & Tommaso Frattini & Peter Huber & Klaus Nowotny & Barbara Vandeweghe, 2011. "The Integration of Migrants and its Effects on the Labour Market," WIFO Studies, WIFO, number 42955, january-j.
    22. Michael Landesmann & Sandra M. Leitner, 2015. "Labour Mobility of Migrants and Natives in the European Union: An Empirical Test of the 'Greasing of the Wheels’ Effect of Migrants," wiiw Working Papers 119, The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw.
    23. Alexander Guschanski & Özlem Onaran, 2018. "Determinants of the Wage Share: A Cross-country Comparison Using Sectoral Data," CESifo Forum, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 19(2), pages 44-54, July.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    migration patterns; high-skill migration; job mismatch; productivity effects;

    JEL classification:

    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • J11 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Demographic Trends, Macroeconomic Effects, and Forecasts

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