A theory of migration as a response to occupational stigma

C. Simon Fan, Oded Stark

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

A theory is developed of labor migration that is prompted by a desire to avoid "social humiliation." In a general-equilibrium framework, it is shown that as long as migration can reduce humiliation sufficiently, migration will occur even between two identical economies. Migration increases the number of individuals who choose to perform degrading jobs and consequently, migration lowers the price of the good produced in the sector that is associated with low social status. Moreover, the greater an individual's aversion to performing degrading jobs, the more likely it is that he will experience a welfare gain when the economy opens up.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)549-571
Number of pages23
JournalInternational Economic Review
Volume52
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2011
Externally publishedYes

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