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Intergenerational mobility and the political economy of immigration

Henning Bohn () and Lopez-Velasco, Armando R.

Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, 2018, vol. 94, issue C, 72-88

Abstract: Flows of US immigrants are concentrated at the extremes of the skill distribution. We develop a dynamic political economy model consistent with this observation. Individuals care about wages and the welfare of their children. Skill types are complementary in production. Voter support for immigration requires that the children of median-voter natives and of immigrants have sufficiently dissimilar skills. We estimate intergenerational transition matrices for skills, as measured by education, and find support for immigration at high and low skills, but not in the middle. In a version with guest worker programs, voters prefer high-skilled immigrants but low-skilled guest workers.

Keywords: Immigration; Political economy model; Overlapping generations; Intergenerational mobility; Guest workers (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: F22 E24 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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