Event type

Do We Need Unskilled Immigrants?

M9B-073 (New IMF Building)
Washington DC
Applicable countries
United States
Event description

Migration into the US and Europe has increased sharply in the postwar period in the U.S., legal immigration more than quintupled from roughly 200,000 per year in he 1950s to over a million per year during the last decade and the moderation of the trend during the Great Recession is expected to be temporary (Shierholz 2011). Moreover, labor market competition from immigrants is most intense for natives with the lowest levels of education. For example, while immigrants in the United States comprised only 13 percent of the working age population in 2000, they made up 28 percent of the population with less than a high school diploma, and over half of all those with less than 8 years of schooling. According to the OECD(2010) the advanced countries are home to 88 million migrants who have no tertiary educations, accounting for 76% of their total foreign –born population. In some countries, notably the United States, Canada, France, Italy and the UK undocumented migrants from countries such as Mexico, Central America and the Philippines account for a large part of the unskilled immigration flow (Goldin et al,2011), Among the general public, the perception that migrants, especially low-skilled migrants, are a major cause of stagnant wages and high unemployment in advanced countries is widespread. For this reason, most studies of immigrantimpact have focused on the effects on low-skilled natives.


Uri Dadush





Paper209.88 KB
Presentation329.16 KB