Zhu, L., Hall, M., and Matsudaira, J. (2020). "Immigration Enforcement and Employment in Large Firms: Evidence from County Participation in 287(g)." In B. Jivetti and M. N. Hoque (Ed.), Population Change and Public Policy. Springer.
Abstract: In this chapter, we examine the effect of 287(g) on employment in large firms, separately for Hispanic and white workers. Using the data on county-level 287(g) applications and establishment-level employee data from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, we employ a difference-in-differences identification strategy, comparing employment outcomes of establishments in 287(g) implemented counties to those in 287(g) denied counties, before and after the implementation of 287(g). Overall, we find that 287(g) has significant and negative impacts on both Hispanic and white employment. The effects are concentrated in a few selected industries; for Hispanic workers, agriculture and mining, health care/social services, and accommodation/food services suffer the largest negative impacts, while for white workers, the adverse employment effects are mostly concentrated in wholesale and retail trade, as well as in administrative support/waste management and the health sectors. We also find that 287(g) differentially affects Hispanic and white workers by gender. For Hispanic workers, most of the effects are driven by male employment, consistent with the fact that deportation in the interior U.S. disproportionately impacts Hispanic men more than Hispanic women. For white workers, on the contrary, both male and female employment are negatively and statistically significantly affected by the implementation of 287(g).
"Comparative Immigration Policies and the Effect of International Students in U.S. Higher Education." (Job Market Paper) [PDF]
Abstract: The international student population has been steadily growing globally in recent decades, yet there have been ongoing debates, especially in the U.S., over immigration policies regarding international students and their impact on domestic students. Proponents argue that international students contribute to U.S. economy and help smooth budget fluctuations in U.S. public universities; while opponents seek to restrict the size of and post-graduation work visas for international students claiming that they displace U.S. domestic students and workers. In this paper, I examine the causal effect of international student enrollment on college completion of U.S. domestic students by leveraging a restrictive immigration policy change in the U.K. that induced more international students from former British colonies to enroll in U.S. universities. Using newly obtained administrative data on all international students in the U.S. between 2003 and 2015, I find that an additional international student per program leads to 0.7 more domestic students to obtain a college degree four years later. The effect is concentrated in public four-year institutions. Additionally, I find positive cross-degree-level effect of international students in master's degree programs on U.S. domestic students in bachelor's degree programs. The positive impact is most likely through cross-subsidization of tuition, serving as evidence of resource effects. The findings show that international students respond to comparative immigration policies. The restrictive immigration policies and anti-immigrant sentiment in the U.S. during the Trump administration could have contributed to the recent decline in international enrollment that indirectly harms domestic students and U.S. higher education.
"About Time: How Combination and Sequence of Weather Events Shape Mexico-U.S. Migration Flows." (with Filiz Garip)
Abstract: Existing work presents mixed findings on the impact of weather events on international mobility from Mexico to the United States. Relying on finer-grained measures and a longer time span, we find the combination of precipitation and temperature extremes and their particular sequencing to be crucial to predicting weather-driven migration responses out of Mexico in the period 1990-2018. We also show heterogeneity in these responses by household wealth status. Specifically, we find that wealthier households in rural communities migrate in the immediate aftermath of a negative weather shock (relative to the ‘normal’ weather in their community), while poorer households need to experience a positive weather event following a negative one in order to migrate to the United States. This pattern suggests that migration as an adaptation strategy might be available to select households in the developing world, and the most vulnerable might be excluded from resorting on an international trip unless they experience particular sequences of weather events that allow them to raise the necessary funds first.
"The Risk of Being Deported: Deportation Prevalence among Unauthorized Immigrants in the interior U.S."
Abstract: Deportation of unauthorized immigrants has increasingly become one of the most heated topics in the U.S. However, little is known about cumulative deportation risk one faces. Using 2006-2013 U.S. deportation data and synthetic cohort life table method, this study estimates the cumulative probability of interior deportation for unauthorized immigrants in the U.S. over time and by gender. The results show that, depending on the examined year, estimated length of stay, and age window of stay, an unauthorized immigrant in the U.S. faces up to 28% cumulative probability of being deported, which is far higher than commonly thought. Compared to the point-in-time deportation rates, the cumulative risks portray a completely different picture for the unauthorized immigrants facing deportation. Moreover, the deportation risks diverge drastically by gender – across all analysis years, men at all ages have higher deportation prevalence than women – and the gap can be as large as 12 times depending on the year. The gender disparity in deportation risk has important and serious implications for Hispanic children’s wellbeing as well as inequality in the society.
"Effect of U.S.-Canada Comparative Immigration Policies on Immigrant Inflow and Labor Markets in Canada."
Abstract: Current U.S. immigration quota system that imposes limits on the number of green cards based on nationalities has not changed since 1991, while demand has increased exponentially. This results in long wait times for individuals from high demand countries. For employment-based green cards, in recent years, college-educated workers from India need to wait for over a decade before submitting applications. In contrast, Canada has implemented several favorable immigration policies to attract high-skilled immigrants. In this paper, I examine the effect of comparative immigration policies in the U.S. and Canada on immigrant inflows and labor market outcomes in Canada. I first show that the adoption of Express Entry, Canada's point-based immigration program, significantly increases new economic immigrants from India. I then estimate the labor market impact of new immigrants using an instrumental variable strategy. Preliminary results show that the surge of new immigrants does not negatively affect employment in local labor markets.
"International Students and Natives’ Attitude towards Immigration." (with Tung Dang)
Abstract: Across the world, immigration has been transforming many countries' demographics in the past decades, which has crucial implications on future politics and the policy-making processes of many developed democracies. In this paper, we examine the causal effect of international students on local communities' attitudes towards immigration. By using administrative data of the universe of international students in the U.S. from 2001 to 2015 and an instrumental variable identification strategy, we are able to isolate the labor market competition hypothesis in immigration attitude formation, and focus exclusively on the sociopsychological hypothesis. Our preliminary results show that overall, an increase in the share of international students at the county level results in marginally more conservative immigration attitude of natives. Interestingly, this effect is driven entirely by individuals with democratic party identity.
"Direct and Spillover Effects of DACA: Evidence from Consumption Patterns and Labor Market Outcomes." (with Rene Crespin)
"Weather Fluctuations in Mexico Linked to Undocumented U.S. Migration and its Duration." (with Filiz Garip)
"Backcasting Using Machine Learning: Age-Specific County Population Counts for Children in the 1960s." (with Esra Kose, Henry Manley, and Douglas Miller)