Who migrates out of Africa? Education, occupational status and earnings as determinants of migration from Senegal to France, Italy and Spain

Pau Baizán, Institució Catalana de Recerca i Estudis Avançats (ICREA) and Universitat Pompeu Fabra
Amparo Gonzalez-Ferrer, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC)

This paper examines the role of individuals’ education, socio-economic status, and income on migration from Senegal to Europe. Our main hypothesis is that selectivity of migrants is to a large extent the result of different employment probabilities at destination, according to skills. The intermediate or positive selectivity (with respect to the source population) often found in migration studies will then reflect the inadequacy of the skills of important fractions of the sending countries’ population to the requirements of labor markets of receiving countries. We use life course data from the survey «Migrations between Africa and Europe», which includes data on migrants, non migrants and returned migrants, surveyed in Senegal, France, Italy and Spain. Our results from event history models confirm the strong positive selection of Senegalese migrants to Europe. Consistently with our hypothesis, predicted earnings in Europe (accounting for the selectivity of migration) for low educated individuals falls below minimum wages in Europe.

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Presented in Session 64: Selection issues in migration