Wednesday, December 7th, 2016 8:54 am

Migration Within Europe

Question A: Freer movement of people to live and work across borders within Europe has made the average western European citizen better off since the 1980s.

Responses
 

Source: European IGM Economic Experts Panel
www.igmchicago.org/european-economic-experts-panel

Responses weighted by each expert's confidence

Source: European IGM Economic Experts Panel
www.igmchicago.org/european-economic-experts-panel

Question B: Freer movement of people to live and work across borders within Europe has made many low-skilled western European citizens worse off since the 1980s.

Responses
 

Source: European IGM Economic Experts Panel
www.igmchicago.org/european-economic-experts-panel

Responses weighted by each expert's confidence

Source: European IGM Economic Experts Panel
www.igmchicago.org/european-economic-experts-panel

Question A Participant Responses

Participant University Vote Confidence Comment Bio/Vote History
Aghion Philippe Aghion Harvard Did Not Answer
Bio/Vote History
         
Allen Franklin Allen Imperial College London Agree 7
Free movement is a good thing economically and in many other ways.
Bio/Vote History
         
Antras Pol Antras Harvard Strongly Agree 8
As with trade, it would be hard to argue that migration has been worse for the average western citizen.
Bio/Vote History
         
Baldwin Richard Baldwin The Graduate Institute Geneva Strongly Agree 10 Bio/Vote History
         
Besley Timothy J. Besley LSE Did Not Answer
Bio/Vote History
         
Blanchard Olivier Blanchard Peterson Institute Agree 7
Bio/Vote History
         
Bloom Nicholas Bloom Stanford Strongly Agree 10
Bio/Vote History
         
Blundell Richard William Blundell University College London Agree 8
Free movement has improved the matching of skills in europe, there may have been some pressure on wages at the bottom but that is not clear.
Bio/Vote History
         
Bénassy-Quéré Agnès Bénassy-Quéré Paris School of Economics Strongly Agree 9
Existing studies conclude to higher GDP and net tax receipts in immigration countries.
Bio/Vote History
         
Carletti Elena Carletti Bocconi Agree 5
Bio/Vote History
         
Danthine Jean-Pierre Danthine Paris School of Economics Agree 3
Instances of excessive mobility may have led to negative perceptions (feeling of being worse off)
Bio/Vote History
         
De Grauwe Paul De Grauwe LSE Agree 9
Bio/Vote History
         
Eeckhout Jan Eeckhout University College London Strongly Agree 10
Bio/Vote History
         
Fehr Ernst Fehr Universität Zurich Agree 6
Bio/Vote History
         
Freixas Xavier Freixas Universitat Pompeu Fabra Strongly Agree 8
More job opportunities have implied more options and made the average citizen better off
Bio/Vote History
         
Fuchs-Schündeln Nicola Fuchs-Schündeln Goethe-Universität Frankfurt Strongly Agree 7
Bio/Vote History
         
Galí Jordi Galí Universitat Pompeu Fabra Uncertain 5
If the "average" citizen is mobile it has certainly increased the range of opportunities available to him/her.
Bio/Vote History
         
Garicano Luis Garicano LSE Strongly Agree 9
Bio/Vote History
         
Giavazzi Francesco Giavazzi Bocconi Strongly Agree 10
Bio/Vote History
         
Griffith Rachel Griffith University of Manchester Strongly Agree 8
Bio/Vote History
         
Guerrieri Veronica Guerrieri Chicago Booth Strongly Agree 8
Bio/Vote History
         
Guiso Luigi Guiso Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance Agree 1
Bio/Vote History
         
Hellwig Martin Hellwig Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods Did Not Answer
Bio/Vote History
         
Honohan Patrick Honohan Trinity College Dublin Agree 6
Scale of growth in intra-EU migration tends to be exaggerated.
Bio/Vote History
         
Kleven Henrik Kleven LSE Strongly Agree 6
Bio/Vote History
         
Krahnen Jan Pieter Krahnen Goethe University Frankfurt Agree 7
Welfare comparisons are hard to substantiate. Moreover, note the identification problem: EU trade and migration happened simultaneously.
Bio/Vote History
         
Krusell Per Krusell Stockholm University Strongly Agree 8
People migrate because they want to. Secondary effects are likely positive too.
Bio/Vote History
         
Kőszegi Botond Kőszegi Central European University Strongly Agree 6
Bio/Vote History
         
La Ferrara Eliana La Ferrara Bocconi Agree 4
Bio/Vote History
         
Leuz Christian Leuz Chicago Booth Agree 7
Especially when considering that many western European countries have low birth rates and aging populations.
Bio/Vote History
         
Meghir Costas Meghir Yale Strongly Agree 9
Bio/Vote History
         
Neary Peter Neary Oxford Strongly Agree 7
All the evidence points to migration as improving productivity in host countries, with very small negative effects on displaced workers
Bio/Vote History
         
O'Rourke Kevin O'Rourke Oxford No Opinion
Again, no such thing as "average citizen". But these freedoms are very popular across EU, and they surely have increased EU GDP.
Bio/Vote History
         
Pagano Marco Pagano Università di Napoli Federico II Strongly Agree 8
Mobility has not only provided employment to migrant workers, but also raised firm profitability and often wages in recipient countries.
-see background information here
Bio/Vote History
         
Pastor Lubos Pastor Chicago Booth Agree 8
Bio/Vote History
         
Persson Torsten Persson Stockholm University Agree 8
Bio/Vote History
         
Pissarides Christopher Pissarides LSE Strongly Agree 10
European workers have more choice of work location to maximize their returns
Bio/Vote History
         
Portes Richard Portes London Business School Strongly Agree 10
There is an extensive empirical literature demonstrating the broad-based economic benefits of migration. Very few losers.
Bio/Vote History
         
Prendergast Canice Prendergast Chicago Booth Agree 8
Bio/Vote History
         
Reichlin Lucrezia Reichlin London Business School Agree 8
Bio/Vote History
         
Repullo Rafael Repullo CEMFI Agree 8
Bio/Vote History
         
Rey Hélène Rey London Business School Agree 8
Efficiency gains from labour mobility, insurance (via remittances) for lower income economies, societal gains from exposure to other culture
Bio/Vote History
         
Schoar Antoinette Schoar MIT Agree 7
Bio/Vote History
         
Van Reenen John Van Reenen MIT Agree 8
People sort according to their comparative advantage. Complement to other EU freedoms
-see background information here
Bio/Vote History
         
Vickers John Vickers Oxford Agree 7
Bio/Vote History
         
Voth Hans-Joachim Voth University of Zurich Agree 8
Bio/Vote History
         
Weder di Mauro Beatrice Weder di Mauro Gutenberg University Mainz and INSEAD Strongly Agree 10
Bio/Vote History
         
Whelan Karl Whelan University College Dublin Agree 8
Agree, though effects on the average person are not the same as on every person.
Bio/Vote History
         
Wyplosz Charles Wyplosz The Graduate Institute Geneva Strongly Agree 8
You see European people everywhere at work or in retirement.
Bio/Vote History
         
Zilibotti Fabrizio Zilibotti Universität Zurich Strongly Agree 10
Mobility from South to North important for cushioning crisis.
Bio/Vote History
         

Question B Participant Responses

Participant University Vote Confidence Comment Bio/Vote History
Aghion Philippe Aghion Harvard Did Not Answer
Bio/Vote History
         
Allen Franklin Allen Imperial College London Disagree 6
I think we are all better off from immigration.
Bio/Vote History
         
Antras Pol Antras Harvard Uncertain 6
As with trade, the effects on low-skilled workers are a bit less clear. Immigrants compete more directly with them. Some might have lost.
-see background information here
Bio/Vote History
         
Baldwin Richard Baldwin The Graduate Institute Geneva Strongly Disagree 10 Bio/Vote History
         
Besley Timothy J. Besley LSE Did Not Answer
Bio/Vote History
         
Blanchard Olivier Blanchard Peterson Institute Agree 8
Bio/Vote History
         
Bloom Nicholas Bloom Stanford Disagree 8
Bio/Vote History
         
Blundell Richard William Blundell University College London Uncertain 7
Free movement has improved matching of skills and capital increasing productivity and income with offsetting effects on the low skilled.
Bio/Vote History
         
Bénassy-Quéré Agnès Bénassy-Quéré Paris School of Economics Uncertain 7
Some countries have failed to carry out the needed solcial investment and/or to compensate the losers.
Bio/Vote History
         
Carletti Elena Carletti Bocconi Agree 5
Bio/Vote History
         
Danthine Jean-Pierre Danthine Paris School of Economics Agree 3
Again inadequate policies are more to blame than mobility itself. Moreover many other low skilled workers have been made better off.
Bio/Vote History
         
De Grauwe Paul De Grauwe LSE Uncertain 5
Bio/Vote History
         
Eeckhout Jan Eeckhout University College London Disagree 8
Bio/Vote History
         
Fehr Ernst Fehr Universität Zurich Disagree 6
Bio/Vote History
         
Freixas Xavier Freixas Universitat Pompeu Fabra Agree 6
The remuneration of low-skilled labor has gone down except, possibly, for those that emigrate within Europe.
Bio/Vote History
         
Fuchs-Schündeln Nicola Fuchs-Schündeln Goethe-Universität Frankfurt Agree 2
Bio/Vote History
         
Galí Jordi Galí Universitat Pompeu Fabra Agree 6
Downward pressure on wages from immigrants with a lower reservation wage.
Bio/Vote History
         
Garicano Luis Garicano LSE Disagree 6
Bio/Vote History
         
Giavazzi Francesco Giavazzi Bocconi Strongly Disagree 1
again the question is about movements within europe, thus no doubts
Bio/Vote History
         
Griffith Rachel Griffith University of Manchester Disagree 6
The free movement of workers has probably led higher unemployment amongst some low skilled-workers, but probably not many.
Bio/Vote History
         
Guerrieri Veronica Guerrieri Chicago Booth Disagree 8
Bio/Vote History
         
Guiso Luigi Guiso Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance Agree 1
free movement of labor has been an important mechanism for many low skill workers for finding a job after they lost it during the euro crisi
Bio/Vote History
         
Hellwig Martin Hellwig Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods Did Not Answer
Bio/Vote History
         
Honohan Patrick Honohan Trinity College Dublin Disagree 6
Bio/Vote History
         
Kleven Henrik Kleven LSE Uncertain 8
Bio/Vote History
         
Krahnen Jan Pieter Krahnen Goethe University Frankfurt Disagree 5
Freer migration has increased GDP, and thus has raised transfers to lower-skilled people. The balance, I believe (!), may well be positive.
Bio/Vote History
         
Krusell Per Krusell Stockholm University Disagree 8
Same as trade question. Some gain, some lose, also among low-skilled workers.
Bio/Vote History
         
Kőszegi Botond Kőszegi Central European University Agree 2
Bio/Vote History
         
La Ferrara Eliana La Ferrara Bocconi No Opinion
Bio/Vote History
         
Leuz Christian Leuz Chicago Booth Agree 6
Native wages for lowest-skilled decrease, but also depends on relative skills of migrants to low-skilled natives
-see background information here
Bio/Vote History
         
Meghir Costas Meghir Yale Disagree 8
Bio/Vote History
         
Neary Peter Neary Oxford Disagree 7
This is definitely a widespread perception, whipped up by populist politicians; but migrants typically bring skills and consume few services
Bio/Vote History
         
O'Rourke Kevin O'Rourke Oxford Disagree 5
Some lose when public services/housing stock aren't expanded, as in UK. I doubt numbers are huge across EU. Real UK problem: domestic policy
Bio/Vote History
         
Pagano Marco Pagano Università di Napoli Federico II Uncertain 7
The evidence on the effect of immigration from EU (as opposed to non-EU) countries on recipient-countries' low-skill wages is ambiguous.
Bio/Vote History
         
Pastor Lubos Pastor Chicago Booth Agree 6
Bio/Vote History
         
Persson Torsten Persson Stockholm University Disagree 7
Bio/Vote History
         
Pissarides Christopher Pissarides LSE Agree 10
migration from east European countries has kept wages of unskilled workers in western countries low
Bio/Vote History
         
Portes Richard Portes London Business School Strongly Disagree 10
Some, not many., Social and political effects are another story.
Bio/Vote History
         
Prendergast Canice Prendergast Chicago Booth Agree 8
Bio/Vote History
         
Reichlin Lucrezia Reichlin London Business School Strongly Disagree 8
Bio/Vote History
         
Repullo Rafael Repullo CEMFI Disagree 6
Bio/Vote History
         
Rey Hélène Rey London Business School Disagree 4
effects are very hard to quantify
Bio/Vote History
         
Schoar Antoinette Schoar MIT Uncertain 7
Bio/Vote History
         
Van Reenen John Van Reenen MIT Disagree 1
Main wage effect of immigrants is small & is on previous cohorts of immigrants
Bio/Vote History
         
Vickers John Vickers Oxford Uncertain 4
Bio/Vote History
         
Voth Hans-Joachim Voth University of Zurich Uncertain 1
Bio/Vote History
         
Weder di Mauro Beatrice Weder di Mauro Gutenberg University Mainz and INSEAD Strongly Disagree 9
Bio/Vote History
         
Whelan Karl Whelan University College Dublin Disagree 1
Empirical evidence on effects of migration from Eastern Europe suggest limited effects on wages in the UK for example.
Bio/Vote History
         
Wyplosz Charles Wyplosz The Graduate Institute Geneva Uncertain 4
I can't remember studies on that issue. My intuition is that low skilled workers moved to services where they benefit from complementarities
Bio/Vote History
         
Zilibotti Fabrizio Zilibotti Universität Zurich Disagree 4
True, at best, for specific sectors of the labor market (construction in rich countries). Sorry, I answered this to previous in error...
Bio/Vote History
         

About the European IGM Economic Experts Panel

This panel explores the views of European economists on vital public policy issues. It does this by polling them on important policy questions, by including a way for them to explain their answers briefly if they wish, and by disseminating these responses directly to the public in a simple format.

To that end, our panel was chosen to include distinguished experts with a keen interest in public policy from the main areas of economics, to be geographically diverse, and to include older and younger scholars. As with the IGM’s US panel, the experts are all outstanding researchers in their fields. The panel includes recipients of top national and international prizes in economics, fellows of the Econometric society and the European Economic Association, members of distinguished national and international policymaking bodies in Europe, recipients of significant grants for economic research, highly accomplished affiliates and program directors of the Centre for Economic Policy Research and the National Bureau of Economic Research, and past and current editors of leading academic journals in the profession. This approach not only provides a set of panelists whose names will be familiar to other economists and the media, but also delivers a group with impeccable qualifications to speak on public policy matters in Europe and beyond.

Questions for the European IGM Economic Experts Panel are emailed individually to all members of the panel. They are phrased as statements with which one can agree or disagree. The experts are also asked how confident they are in their knowledge of the issue associated with the question (10 being highest). Each panelist responds electronically at his or her convenience. Panelists may consult whatever resources they like before answering. They may also include brief comments with their responses, or provide links to relevant sources.

It is important to explain one aspect of our voting process. In some instances a panelist may neither agree nor disagree with a statement, and there can be two very different reasons for this. One case occurs when an economist knows a lot about a topic and yet sees the evidence on the exact claim at hand as ambiguous. In such cases our panelists vote "uncertain". A second case relates to statements on topics so far removed from the economist's knowledge that he or she does not feel well placed to judge. In this case, our panelists vote "no opinion".

Panelists suggest many of the questions themselves. Members of the public are also welcome to suggest questions (see link below). Although IGM faculty members are responsible for deciding the final version of each question, we send a draft of the question to the panel in advance and invite them to point out problems with the wording if they see any. This process helps us to reduce vagueness or problems of interpretation.

The panel data are copyrighted by the Initiative on Global Markets and will be analyzed for an article to appear in a peer-reviewed journal.

chicago booth