The Economics of Immigration  book cover
2nd Edition

The Economics of Immigration

ISBN 9780367416164
Published November 27, 2020 by Routledge
470 Pages 90 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

This book, in its second edition, introduces readers to the economics of immigration, which is a booming field within economics. The main themes and objectives of the book are for readers to understand the decision to migrate, the impacts of immigration on markets and government budgets and the consequences of immigration policies in a global context. Our goal is for readers to be able to make informed economic arguments about key issues related to immigration around the world.

This book applies economic tools to the topic of immigration to answer questions like whether immigration raises or lowers the standard of living of people in a country. The book examines many other consequences of immigration as well, such as the effect on tax revenues and government expenditures, the effect on how and what firms decide to produce and the effect on income inequality, to name just a few. It also examines questions like what determines whether people choose to move and where they decide to go. It even examines how immigration affects the ethnic diversity of restaurants and financial markets.

Readers will learn how to apply economic tools to the topic of immigration. Immigration is frequently in the news as more people move around the world to work, to study and to join family members. The economics of immigration has important policy implications. Immigration policy is controversial in many countries. This book explains why this is so and equips the reader to understand and contribute to policy debates on this important topic.

Table of Contents

Part I: Background on Immigration

Chapter 1: Why Study the Economics of Immigration?

Chapter 2: Patterns of International Migration

Chapter 3: Determinants of Immigration

Part II: Immigrant Selection and Assimilation

Chapter 4: Selection in Immigration

Chapter 5: Assimilation

Chapter 6: The Second Generation

Part III: Labor Market Effects of Immigration

Chapter 7: Labor Market Effects of Immigration: Theory

Chapter 8: Labor Market Effects of Immigration: Evidence

Part IV: Other Effects of Immigration

Chapter 9: Effects on Other Markets in the Destination

Chapter 10: Fiscal Effects

Chapter 11: Effects on Source Countries

Part V: Frontiers in Immigration Research

Chapter 12: Frontiers in the Economics of Immigration 

Part VI: Immigration Policy

Chapter 13: U.S. Immigration Policy

Chapter 14: Immigration Policy around the World

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Cynthia Bansak is the Charles A. Dana Professor of Economics at St. Lawrence University. She holds a BA from Yale University and an MA and PhD in Economics from the University of California, San Diego. She considers herself an applied microeconomist with research interests in labor economics, international immigration, remittances, educational attainment and business cycles. Bansak is a research fellow at IZA.

Nicole Simpson is the W Bradford Wiley Professor of Economics at Colgate University. She holds a BA in Economics from the University of St. Thomas in Minnesota and an MA and PhD in Economics from the University of Iowa. She is a macroeconomist who focuses on labor issues. Her research areas include the determinants of immigration, the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and education. Simpson is a research fellow at IZA.

Madeline Zavodny is a Professor of Economics at the University of North Florida. She holds a BA in Economics from Claremont McKenna College and a PhD in Economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Before joining UNF, she taught at Agnes Scott College and Occidental College and was an economist with the Federal Reserve System. Zavodny is a research fellow at IZA.


"Great textbook for undergraduate, interdisciplinary classes on immigration! It provides an up-to-date summary of key research findings regarding migration flows over the past decades, focusing on their determinants and selectivity, as well as on the assimilation of migrants and their impact on receiving and sending economies. Overall, a useful and clear introduction to the economics of immigration and a prerequisite to immigration policy discussions."

Catalina Amuedo-Dorantes, Professor of Economics, University of California, Merced

"The Economics of Immigration covers the breadth and depth of the economic analysis of migration. For each topic, the book provides an intuitive summary of the theory, an overview of the state-of-the-art research as well as interesting case studies from all over the world. The book is an indispensable resource for students interested in the causes and consequences of migration."

Benjamin Elsner, Assistant Professor of Economics, University College Dublin

"The authors have created a thoroughly accessible, informative, and authoritative introduction to the economics of immigration. The book is particularly effective at presenting formal economic models in an understandable way and at providing a well-rounded synthesis of the empirical research on the economics of immigration. This textbook is unique in that it goes beyond theory and covers an extensive range of relevant topics and current policy discussions with remarkable breadth and depth. This is an outstanding and comprehensive resource for any student studying migration."

Mary Lopez, Professor of Economics, Occidental College

"Bansak, Simpson, and Zavodny have written an ideal textbook for undergraduate students interested in the economics of emmigration. The text examines the economic costs and benefits of the migration experience from the perspective of immigrants, residents of origin countries, and people in the destination. The authors cover a range of immigration issues while providing important context for understanding how and why academics sometimes disagree about the economic causes and consequences of migration."

Chad Sparber, W. Bradford Wiley Professor of Economics, Colgate University

"The past two decades have seen economists’ interest in immigration grow from beyond the labor market effects on wages and employment to virtually every facet of the economy. Recent research has examined the relationship between immigration and economic growth, fiscal policy, income mobility, law, health, housing, families, innovation, and more. Bansak, Simpson, and Zavodny have managed to distil this vast body of literature into a format that is easily accessible to anyone interested in immigration policy. The result is a textbook than can simultaneously be assigned in both an upper-division economics course and introductory courses on immigration across the social sciences."

Michael Coon, Associate Professor of Economics, The University of Tampa