Tag Archives: #social mobility

How dreams matter for migration: Now Published in the Journal of Population Economics

The article provides evidence that countries with stronger beliefs that hard work leads to a higher social status (the ‘American Dream’) attract a higher proportion of high-skilled immigrants.

Read more in:

Claudia Lumpe: “Public beliefs in social mobility and high-skilled migration”
Journal of Population Economics, Vol. 32 (2019), Issue 3, pp. 981–1008.

Journal Website Issue. Paper Access.

GLO Fellow Claudia Lumpe

Author Abstract: This paper investigates how beliefs of the destination country’s population in social mobility may influence the location choice of high-skilled migrants. We pool macro data from the IAB brain-drain dataset with population survey data from the ISSP for the period 1987–2010 to identify the effect of public beliefs in social mobility on the share of high-skilled immigrants (stocks) in the main OECD immigration countries. The empirical results suggest that countries with higher “American Dream” beliefs, i.e., with stronger beliefs that climbing the social ladder can be realized by own hard work, attracted a higher proportion of high-skilled immigrants over time. This pattern even holds against the fact that existing social mobility in these countries is relatively lower.