Interactions between international migration and the welfare state

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The intertemporal and intratemporal redistribution features of the welfare state make it an attractive destination for immigrants, particularly for low-skill immigrants. George Borjas (1994) reports that foreign-born households in the United States accounted for 10 percent of households receiving public assistance in 1990, and for 13 percent of total cash assistance distributed, even though they constituted only 8 percent of all households in the United States. In this chapter we explore the implications of various redistribution policies for the attitude of the native-born towards migrants. We analyze the effect of migration on the shape and magnitude of redistribution policies that are determined in a political economy equilibrium; at the same time, we address the question of whether the level of migration, when not restricted, is higher or lower in this welfare state than in the laissez-faire (no-redistribution) economy.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInternational Migration
Subtitle of host publicationTrends, Policy and Economic Impact
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages20
ISBN (Electronic)9781134557875
ISBN (Print)9780415237826
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2005


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