This chapter analyses the wage gap created by migration for graduates in Mexico, specifically looking at migration episodes before and after graduating from college and their subsequent influence on wages. The dataset used for the analysis is the Mexican Family Life Survey (MXFLS), a survey that collects information on all the permanent migration episodes of individuals from the age of twelve. The chapter describes the migration path over time for graduates by estimating three sequential stages of such a path: (i) migration choices before attending college; (ii) the likelihood of graduating from college; and (iii) an earnings equation representing returns to human capital. Results suggest that migration in Mexico creates a wage gap through the type of location to which the individual moved before college but not through migration episodes after college. Results highlight that the rural-to-urban migration in the search of better living conditions is the key driver of graduate migration in Mexico, but not the urban-to-urban or the urban-to-rural migration found in developed countries where individuals look for a return to the human capital they accumulated in college. Findings also show that the higher the heterogeneity of the migration path, the higher the wage premium. From a policy perspective, this result suggests that the focus should be on providing not just one but multiple opportunities for permanent migration across heterogeneous locations, especially for potential college students living in small cities or villages.
Alessandra Faggian, Jonathan Corcoran and Rachel S. Franklin
This chapter is the first analysis of graduate mobility patterns in the United States with a focus on unveiling the role that inter-regional migration plays in shaping graduate salaries. By classifying graduates into five groups based on their sequential migration behaviour first from their pre-university state to college and then from college to their current job location, results reveal that most migratory individuals – that is, ‘repeat migrants’ – benefit from the highest wage premium both in terms of mean (16.3 per cent) and median salary (13.2 per cent). Results also point to other migration behaviours attracting wage premiums, although these vary according to the type of graduate. In particular, domestic graduates benefit more from return migration (an 11.3 per cent increase in mean salary) than repeat migration (10.1 per cent) possibly because of network and family effects in the state of domicile. Overall we find that migration behaviour does influence labour-market outcomes and salaries in particular. Geographical space – in this case represented by migration flows – matters, and should always be included in analyses. This study is a first step towards gaining a more comprehensive understanding of the role that migration plays in shaping the spatial distribution and dynamics of human capital across the United States. This is particularly important given that the United States is the world’s largest education market that continues to experience marked growth.
Roberta Comunian, Sarah Jewell and Alessandra Faggian
Current research in regional science and economic geography has been placing increasing emphasis on the role played by the attraction and retention of graduates in shaping patterns of local economic development in Europe and internationally. Within this growing field of study, the patterns of migration of graduates has been explored in detail and its connection with personal benefits for the individual (higher salaries) and regional cumulative outcomes have been examined. Another trend, which has received some, although marginal, attention, is the increase in female participation and achievement in higher education. The scope of this chapter is to consider the interconnection between these two fields in graduate studies: gender and migration patterns. Using data from the 2006/07 cohort longitudinal DLHE survey, migration patterns of graduates are explored, with particular focus on gender dynamics. Graduates are classified according to their sequential migration behaviour first from their pre-university domicile to university, then from university to first job post-graduation, and finally their job 3.5 years after graduation. The chapter further focuses on the potential salary benefits of migration decisions and their difference across the two gender groups. It also explores how these migration patterns and the potential salary benefits of migration vary across different subject groups.