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Inaugural Lecture - Imran Rasul

Publication date: Nov 16, 2011 2:27:20 PM

Start: Nov 29, 2011 6:30:00 PM
End: Nov 29, 2011 8:00:00 PM

Location: Gustave Tuck Lecture Theatre

29 November 2011

UCL Wilkins Gustave Tuck Lecture Theatre - 6.30pm

Professor Imran Rasul obtained his PhD in Economics from the LSE in 2003. He is now a Professor at University College London, co-director of the Centre for the Microeconomic Analysis of Public Policy at the Institute of Fiscal Studies, and research co-director of the Human Capital Research Group of the International Growth Centre. His research interests include labor, development and public economics. He is a managing editor of the Review of Economic Studies journal. He was awarded the 2007 IZA Young Economist Prize and the 2008 CESIfo Distinguished Affiliate Award.

The Making of Modern America: Migratory Flows in the Age of Mass Migration

We provide new estimates of migrant flows into and out of America during the Age of Mass Migration at the turn of the twentieth century. Our analysis is based on a novel data set of administrative records covering over 20 million migrants who entered Ellis Island, New York between 1892 and 1924. We use these records to measure inflows into New York, and then scale-up to estimate inflows into America as a whole.

The accounting exercise overturns common wisdom on two fronts. First, we estimate flows into the US to be 20% and 170% higher than stated in official statistics for the 1900-10 and 1910-20 decades, respectively. Second, we estimate the rate of out-migration from the US to be 76% during 1900-10 and close to 100% during the turbulent 1910-20 decade. These figures are between two and three times larger the official statistics estimates in each decade.

We discuss how this effective two-way flow between the US and Europe  informs understanding the selection of immigrants that chose to permanently reside in the US, their impact on Americans in labor markets, and long run institutional change both in America and Europe.

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