Brain Gain or Brain Waste? The Performance of Return Labor Migrants in the Ukrainian Labor Market
Economics Education and Research Consortium Working Paper No. 11/06E
46 Pages Posted: 9 Apr 2011
Date Written: February 28, 2011
Return migration is an important channel through which international labor migration can have a direct positive effect on development of the sending country. Using the unique individual-level data set, this study identifies the main characteristics of return labor migration to Ukraine and analyzes the economic activities chosen by migrants after their return. Return migration to Ukraine is of limited scale, and it often occurs due to the temporary nature of employment abroad, family reasons or failed migration experience. Applying a multinomial probit model, we find that return migrants are more likely to find employment in the non-farm informal sector than in the formal sector compared to nonmigrants but this effect becomes insignificant when we correct for the sample selection into return migration. At the same time, return migrants are found to have higher probability of being nonemployed and this effect is stronger among returnees with re-migration intention. Overall, there is no strong evidence of "brain gain" from return labor migration in Ukraine.
Keywords: return migration, sample selection, activity choice, informal sector
JEL Classification: J61, J24, F22, C36, O17
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