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This paper investigates the long-run effects of immigration on wages and welfare in a model with endogenous technology choice (ETC) where firms are allowed to choose their optimal skill intensity from a menu of available technologies. I embed the ETC framework into the Auerbach and Kotlikoff model (1987) that features a large set of overlapping generations, a rich collection of population dynamics, and a social security system. I calibrate the model to match with the U.S. data and evaluate the effect of ETC with the help of two experiments. In the first experiment, I increase the share of high-skilled immigrants and compare the wage and welfare predictions of the model with ETC to a standard model where the skill intensities in production technology are fixed. In the standard model, since the skill intensities are constant, increase in the supply of high-skilled labor leads to a decrease in high-skilled wages and an increase in low-skilled wages. On the other hand, in the model with ETC, negative supply-side effects are counterbalanced by an increase in the intensity of the more abundant high-skilled labor, leading to a smaller decrease in their wages. The discrepancy between wage predictions of these two models is also reflected in the welfare: while the model with ETC predicts an increase in both high- and low-skilled natives’ welfare, the standard model would predict a decrease in the welfare of the high skilled and a larger increase in the welfare of the low skilled. In the second experiment, I examine the effects of an increase in low-skilled immigration and find that in this case, since the initial production technology is low-skilled intensive, the ETC effects are smaller. These results imply that if ETC is ignored, both in the short run and long run, wage and welfare analyses of immigration will be incomplete, and even misleading.
This paper provides new insights into the effect of birth cohort size on cohort lifetime wages and its sensitivity to the future trajectories of immigration and fertility. The main innovation is to relax the typical assumption of perfect substitution of labor by age. The effect of imperfect substitution of labor by age is to qualify the standard result that smaller birth cohorts are likely to enjoy relatively high wages since that result depends on the size of co-worker cohorts. The positive small cohort effect on lifetime wages therefore depends on demographic patterns, which are simulated here through low and high fertility and immigration projections. The analysis applies to actual and projected cohorts for Australia and tests the sensitivity to alternative demographic parameters, and the substitution and discount parameters. The effects of imperfect substitution can amount several percentage points of lifetime wages.
Can corrective information change citizens’ misperceptions about immigrants and subsequently lead to favorable immigration opinions? While prior studies from the USA document how corrections about the size of minority populations fail to change citizens’ immigration-related opinions, they do not examine how other facts that speak to immigrants’ cultural or economic dependency rates can influence immigration policy opinions. To extend earlier work, we conducted a large-scale survey experiment fielded to a nationally representative sample of Danes. We randomly expose participants to information about non-Western immigrants’ (1) welfare dependency rate, (2) crime rate, and (3) proportion of the total population. We find that participants update their factual beliefs in light of correct information, but reinterpret the information in a highly selective fashion, ultimately failing to change their policy preferences.
In recent decades, citizenship policies in Europe have changed significantly: some governments have introduced restrictive new requirements for citizenship, while others have made citizenship more accessible. What explains this variation? Despite a burgeoning literature on both comparative citizenship and spatial competition among parties, scholarship on this question remains in its infancy and primarily focused on the influence of the far right. Expanding on this growing research, this article argues that citizenship policy change results from electoral competition on both sides of the political spectrum, in conjunction with governments’ ideological orientation. Using new data on citizenship policies across sixteen European countries from 1975 to 2014, the author demonstrates that left-of-center governments facing increasing levels of left party competition are associated with more accessible policy changes, while increasing levels of party competition from the far right yield more restrictive policy changes under not only right-of-center governments, but also centrist and left-of-center governments as well.
Not a day passes without political discussion of immigration. Reception of immigrants, their treatment, strategies seeing to their inclusion, management of migration flows, limitation of their numbers, the selection of immigrants; all are ongoing dialogues. European Societies, Migration, and the Law shows that immigrants, regardless of their individual status, their different backgrounds, or their different histories and motivations to move across borders, are often seen as 'the other' to the imaginary society of nationals making up the receiving (nation-)states. This book provides insights into this issue of 'othering' in the field of immigration and asylum law and policy in Europe. It provides an introduction to the mechanisms of 'othering' and reveals strategies and philosophies which lead to the 'othering' of immigrants. It exposes the tools applied in the implementation and application of legislation that separate, deliberately or not, immigrants from the receiving society.
Immigrants to the United States are assigned to ethnic and racial categories that often make little sense in an international context or are actively resisted by new arrivals. This study uses a large, nationally representative sample to test how skin color constrains and patterns that resistance, and how individual characteristics shape identification choices. Using the 2003 New Immigrant Survey, I find that skin tone has significant relationships with ethnic and racial self-identification choices for immigrants, even after controlling for characteristics like country of origin, with higher rates of Latinx identification among light-skinned immigrants than dark-skinned respondents, and especially high rates of refusing the “standard” racial categories for those near the middle of the skin tone scale. The racial categories selected by immigrants reflect not only their region of origin, but also their education level and their age, controlling for a range of demographic predictors. I discuss the implications for the racialization of immigrants to the United States.
Years ago at graduate school, a fellow student in the American Seminar class asked, “What is the difference between race and ethnicity?” The professor replied, “Asians usually find it hard to distinguish the two.” The student was from an Asian country and the professor did not elaborate the distinction between the concepts. It is no brainer for Americans to tell the difference; however, for people new to American society who have not lived in a racially conscious and divisive society, it is confusing to refer to a minority people as belonging to both a particular race and to a different ethnicity. In the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, when millions of immigrants came to America in search of better life and supplied American industries with labor, they were labeled white, yellow, brown, or black. This skin-colored definition of people as different races reflected American racial views of people of different cultures. Even in current mainstream discourse, racial and ethnic minorities are still called people of color or colored people, instead of minorities.
The authors introduce the idea of California inaugurating a new wave of progressive state citizenship, with other states such as Connecticut, Illinois, Oregon, and New York also making significant moves toward expanded citizenship rights. They summarize their argument, challenging long-held views of American citizenship as an exclusively national concept and concerns that “states rights” are necessarily harmful for immigrants and communities of color. The authors offer a new framework of state citizenship that builds on recent works in progressive federalism as well as citizenship rights. Going from concept to application, the authors challenge the long history of civil rights scholarship that has steadfastly remained nationally oriented, showing that states have also played critical roles in expanding Black rights. They also challenge immigration scholarship to take seriously the role of states in expanding citizenship rights for unauthorized immigrants. Finally, they show how the framework of state citizenship offers a systematic way to understand expansions in the rights of women and LGBTQ populations, among other groups, throughout United States history.
This chapter explores historical and current religious discrimination in language and its crossover with xenophobia and racism. We consider slurs, stereotypes, and demonization related to prejudice against various belief systems. The chapter looks at religions that are a minority (especially among immigrants) in the U.S., but with a focus on contemporary anti-Semitism and anti-Muslim prejudice (Islamophobia). Discrimination against Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, and traditional religions is explored. We also consider the growing discrimination against non-theists (atheists), which is an often-overlooked area.
US immigration policy has deeply racist roots. From his rhetoric to his policies, President Donald Trump has continued this tradition, most notoriously through his border wall, migrant family separation, and child detention measures. But who exactly supports these practices and what factors drive their opinions? Our research reveals that racial attitudes are fundamental to understanding who backs the president's most punitive immigration policies. We find that whites who feel culturally threatened by Latinos, who harbor racially resentful sentiments, and who fear a future in which the United States will be a majority–minority country, are among the most likely to support Trump's actions on immigration. We argue that while the President's policies are unpopular with the majority of Americans, Trump has grounded his political agenda and 2020 reelection bid on his ability to politically mobilize the most racially conservative segment of whites who back his draconian immigration enforcement measures.
Xenophobic narratives that describe Latinx immigrants as culturally deficient, threatening, and undeserving lawbreakers have received extensive scrutiny from the public and academics alike. However, few scholars have examined the positive narratives that surround this group, an especially important line of inquiry given the nature and prevalence of colorblind racial ideology today. In this paper, we consider how (seemingly) positive elite news media discourse contributes to the racialization of Latinx immigrants. We analyzed 1383 frames derived from newspaper articles appearing on the front page of The New York Times between 2001 and 2019. We found that even supportive articles contribute to the racialization of this group by subtly reinforcing boundaries between “us” and “them,” especially when compared to positive articles about non-Latinx immigrants. Specifically, positive newspaper articles portrayed Latinx immigrants as economically exploitable, as vulnerable but blameworthy, and as mostly illegal. We also found that positive newspaper articles portrayed both Latinx and non-Latinx immigrants as devoted to their families and traditional gender roles. However, we argue that this depiction reinforces a hierarchy based on White notions of deservingness. Our analysis shows the flexibility of colorblind discourse to prop up existing racial hierarchies in U.S. society and to “Other” racial and ethnic minorities.
A body of scholarship interrogates conventional notions of citizenship, viewing full social inclusion beyond formal status and as a matter of belonging. This paper integrates the perspective of anti-Blackness with that of belonging and theorizes anti-Black non-belonging. Based on more than a year of fieldwork in the Lisbon metropolitan area, I illustrate how the reality of anti-Black non-belonging in Portugal means that African-descendant women are vulnerable to racist, everyday practices in public space that impact their individual and group reality and feelings of national belonging. Employing a counter narrative methodology, I argue that Cape Verdean women’s narratives of anti-Black non-belonging illustrate the agentic strategy that they deploy to carve our alternative modes of belonging as they navigate their everyday lives. Their accounts illustrate the continued need for African-descendant women to draw from their everyday knowledge of domination to employ resistance, whether through their own parenting or through their own reactionary voices in public space. Anti-Black non-belonging is therefore both a form of racialization and a matter of resistance; as African-descendent women are racialized as foreign, non-being, and out of place, they also challenge the ideology of Portuguese anti-racialism that places Africans and African descendants outside of European citizenry.
Long-term social and demographic changes - and the conflicts they create - continue to transform British politics. In this accessible and authoritative book Sobolewska and Ford show how deep the roots of this polarisation and volatility run, drawing out decades of educational expansion and rising ethnic diversity as key drivers in the emergence of new divides within the British electorate over immigration, identity and diversity. They argue that choices made by political parties from the New Labour era onwards have mobilised these divisions into politics, first through conflicts over immigration, then through conflicts over the European Union, culminating in the 2016 EU referendum. Providing a comprehensive and far-reaching view of a country in turmoil, Brexitland explains how and why this happened, for students, researchers, and anyone who wants to better understand the remarkable political times in which we live.
This chapter explores Trump’s language around immigration to determine how he manages to terrorize immigrants while arguing that immigrants should be the source of America’s terror. Drawing on conceptual metaphor theory and over 300 speeches and 6,000 tweets, the authors find that Trump’s primary metaphor represents America as a fortress that is under attack, its cities and towns overrun by polluting invaders. Trump characterizes Mexico as the enemy that sent unauthorized immigrants to wreak havoc, and represents himself as the only hero who can save the nation. Along the way, the chapter explores Trump’s misleading extension of MS-13, the notorious gang, to all Latino gangs and even all young Latinos, and Trump’s extension of the phrase “criminal alien” (immigrants who commit felonious crimes) to all unauthorized immigrants. The authors draw parallels to related conceptual metaphors to be found in the history of Western ethnic nationalism, including Nazi Germany.
How do economic opportunities abroad affect citizens’ ability to exit an authoritarian regime? This article theorizes the conditions under which authoritarian leaders will perceive emigration as a threat and use imprisonment instead of other types of anti-emigration measures to prevent mass emigration. Using data from communist East Germany's secret prisoner database that we reassembled based on archival material, the authors show that as economic opportunities in West Germany increased, the number of East German exit prisoners – political prisoners arrested for attempting to cross the border illegally – also rose. The study's causal identification strategy exploits occupation-specific differences in the changing economic opportunities between East and West Germany. Using differential access to West German television, it also sheds light on the informational mechanism underlying the main finding; cross-national data are leveraged to present evidence of the external validity of the estimates. The results highlight how global economic disparities affect politics within authoritarian regimes.
This chapter challenges that claim that intellectuals comprise an elite class that possess a unique capacity to raise difficult questions and challenge the status quo. Nabil Echchaibi draws on his own collaborative work with scholars and artists on the questions of immigration, borders, and frontiers to suggest that scholarship is enriched when subjects are invited in as collaborators. He argues that scholars need to collective re-imagine research as a collaboration across a diverse set of expertise and genres, work that embraces the obliqueness of knowledge with the hope of producing an “other” form of knowledge that goes beyond the intellectual boundaries and epistemic and linguistic limitations that shape media scholarship. Rather than making our work more accessible to the public, he argues, we should be working with publics in order to transform our work to be more relevant and therefore more readily heard to publics beyond academia.
Many western liberal democracies have witnessed increased discrimination against immigrants and opposition to multiculturalism. Prior research identifies ethno-linguistic differences between immigrant and native populations as the key source of such bias. Linguistic assimilation has therefore been proposed as an important mechanism to reduce discrimination and mitigate conflict between natives and immigrants. Using large-scale field experiments conducted in 30 cities across Germany – a country with a high influx of immigrants and refugees – we empirically test whether linguistic assimilation reduces discrimination against Muslim immigrants in everyday social interactions. We find that it does not; Muslim immigrants are no less likely to be discriminated against even if they appear to be linguistically assimilated. However, we also find that ethno-linguistic differences alone do not cause bias among natives in a country with a large immigrant population and state policies that encourage multiculturalism.