Selecting Only the Best and Brightest? An Assessment of Migration Policy Selectivity and its Effectiveness

30 October 2020

This workshop is to present and solicit feedback on a yet to be published paper, written by Professors Glenn Rayp, Ilse Ruyssen and Samuel Standaert, that introduces a new set of comprehensive and cross-country comparable indicators of migration policy selectivity which account for its multidimensional nature, and analyses the impact of the differential treatment of immigrants on the size and structure of migration flows. Specifically, the authors combine all publicly available and relevant data on migration policy selectivity since WWII to build three composite indicators differentiating selectivity in terms of skills, economic resources and nationality. Using these indicators, they characterize the migration policy of 42 (mostly OECD) countries from 1990 to  2014.

Overall, the selectivity of migration policy is shown to strongly increase over time. While more developed countries tend to select more based on the nationality of migrants, there is evidence of convergence in selectivity on the basis of economic resources between OECD and non-OECD countries. Furthermore, the skill selectivity of EU countries increases over time but remains below the level of non-EU OECD countries like Australia, Canada and the US. Subsequently, we estimate the impact of migration policy selectivity on the scale and structure of migration flows. Selectivity is found to have a significant impact on migration flows, primarily when it is based on nationality or economic resources. Its effect is comparable in magnitude to the traditional gravity model determinants of migration and far larger than that of the overall level of restrictiveness of migration policy.

Speakers: Samuel Standaert & Ilse Ruyssen 
Authors: Glenn Rayp, Ilse Ruyssen and Samuel Standaert
Friday, 30 October 2020
12.30 - 13.30 (Central European Summer Time)
UNU-CRIS, virtual

This workshop is free of cost, but registration is required. Further information will be sent to you how to join this workshop prior to the event.

Please register here.



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