Location Choice, Labor Market Conditions, and Marital Sorting among Immigrants

Job Market Paper

Labor market integration programs affect not only immigrants’ economic outcomes but also their social integration. In this paper, I analyze how measures of social integration, like the share of marriages with natives and immigrants’ spatial concentration, change under different policy scenarios. I first show correlations between immigrants’ labor market outcomes, marital patterns, and spatial distribution. Then, using German data, I estimate a structural model with location, marriage, and labor supply decisions. The model reflects two trade-offs immigrants face: a) partner choice: ”marry your like” vs. economic gains from marriage with a native, and b) location choice: a region with higher wages vs. a region with better marriage opportunities. Model simulations reveal that: 1) reducing the immigrant-native income gap by 25% decreases immigrants’ spatial concentration (by 2.9%), but lowers the share of immigrant women married to natives (by 2 pp); 2) declining the regional wage gap by 50% significantly reduces immigrants’ spatial concentration (by 15%), increases the share of immigrant men married to native (by 1.1 pp), but decreases the share of immigrant women married to natives (by 0.6 pp). I also find that ignoring adjustments in location and marriage choices under both policies overstates the decrease in immigrant-native income inequality and underpredicts the welfare gains. The reason for that is when immigrants’ labor market position improves, they give up part of their income gains and marry natives less often to satisfy their taste for similarity in partners’ origin, increasing their welfare.

This research has been financed by the European Research Council (ERC) through Starting Grant no. 804989.

Across-District Marriage Migration in India

Work in progress

The sex ratio in India is regionally very skewed. As a result, it is common for women to move out of their district for marriage. In this paper, we focus on the causes and consequences of women’s marriage migration. First, we document new empirical facts associated with sex ratio, probability of marriage migration, and household characteristics. We find that women are more like to migrate for marriage to a region with a more skewed sex ratio and to a rural household, where the household head has at least primary education. Second, we build a static marriage market model with across-district marriage migration. We use the model to analyze the intrahousehold bargaining power of local and migrant women. Preliminary results show a negative correlation between men’s marriage surplus and the probability of marrying a woman from the other district. It might indicate that the bargaining power of arriving women is higher, and they might profit from moving away from home.

This research has been financed by the European Research Council (ERC) through Starting Grant no. 804989.

Early life shocks and human capital: skill development among Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children

Work in progress

This research has been financed by the European Research Council (ERC) through Starting Grant no. 804989.


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International Doctorate in Economic Analysis
Facultat d'Economia i Empresa
Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona
Edifici B - Campus de Bellaterra
08193 Bellaterra
Cerdanyola del Vallès
Barcelona (Spain)

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