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The primary aim of the program is to foster policy innovations and public-private partnerships that maximize the benefits of international migration for migrants, the places they arrive to, and the communities from which migrants depart. To achieve this, the program will focus its efforts three-fold:
Encouraging new lawful migration channels, especially in the Africa-Europe corridor;
Educating and persuading policymakers on the demographic shifts in sub-Saharan Africa that will create inevitable migration pressures; and
Informing and shaping policies around development aid and migration deterrence, to shape policies that promote smart migration governance and maximize sustainable development impacts.
One such solution we developed to channel migration pressures into tangible, mutual benefits for both a country of migrant origin and a country of migrant destination is the Global Skill Partnership model (GSP). This brochure describes the GSP model, where it is being applied, and what makes it different from existing bilateral labor agreements. Essentially, the country of origin agrees to train potential migrants in skills specifically and immediately needed in a country of destination, before those people leave. And in return, a country of destination provides technology and finance to support the training and employment of both those potential migrants and non-migrants at the origin. The model was specifically designed to promote economic development in countries of origin, and combat “brain drain.”
Do immigrants from poor countries hurt native workers? A study by an influential immigration economist at Harvard University recently found that a famous flood of Cuban immigrants into Miami dramatically reduced the wages of native workers. But there’s a problem. The Borjas study had a critical flaw that makes the finding spurious.
Using data collected by the North Carolina Growers’ Association (NCGA), the leading employer of workers with H-2 visas, Michael Clemens shows that foreign workers have almost no direct effect on the employment prospects of US workers in H-2 occupations. Instead, they actually a large and positive indirect effect on US employment by contributing to North Carolina’s economy.
An influential strand of research has tested for the effects of immigration on natives’ wages and employment using exogenous refugee supply shocks as natural experiments. Several studies have reached conflicting conclusions about the effects of noted refugee waves such as the Mariel Boatlift in Miami and post-Soviet refugees to Israel. As a whole, the evidence from refugee waves reinforces the existing consensus that the impact of immigration on average native-born workers is small, and fails to substantiate claims of large detrimental impacts on workers with less than high school.
Imagine you are a Guatemalan living and working in the United States without the proper documents. Almost certainly (because it is legally required) there is a poster in the place where you work—most likely in English and Spanish—that “Equal Opportunity is the Law” and that you are protected from discrimination “on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), or national origin.”
There are over 25 million refugees in the world today and most of them—especially those in developing countries—do not have formal labor market access (LMA). Granting refugees formal LMA has the potential to create substantial benefits for refugees and their hosts.
An increasingly common justification for European development assistance to Africa is the notion that it will reduce migration from the South. While this sounds intuitive and makes for an appealing argument, the research shows that it is highly unlikely. As communities become less poor, more people gain the abilities and wherewithal to undertake an expensive journey to a better life elsewhere. Development often increases migration—at least initially.