This collection contains three articles from the fields of migration and development economics. In the first, paper we assess empirically the changes in returns to education at the subnational level in Uganda using the Uganda National Household Surveys for 2002/2003 and 2005/2006. Our results indicate that average returns to schooling tended to converge across regions in the last decade. The overall trend in convergence of returns to schooling took place at all levels of educational attainment and this behavior in returns to education is mostly driven by the dynamics of returns to schooling in urban areas. We analyse subnational convergence in returns to education and unveil deviant dynamics in Northern Uganda. We discuss the potential challenges to inclusive economic growth in Uganda which are implied by our results
In the second article, a method aimed at estimating global bilateral migration flows and assessing their determinants is presented. We employ the fact that available net migration figures for a country are (nonlinear) aggregates of migration flows from and to all other countries of the world in order to construct a statistical model that links the determinants of (unobserved) migration flows to total net migration. Using simple specifications based on the gravity model for international migration, we find that migration flows can be explained by standard gravity model variables such as GDP and population in the source and destination countries and the distance between them. The usefulness of such models is exemplified by combining estimated specifications with population and GDP projections in order to assess quantitatively the expected changes in migration flows to Europe in the coming decades.
The third paper takes a close look at relative deprivation as a potential driver of emigration rates of countries. The main hypotheses derived from the theory on relative deprivation and migration are tested empirically using data on migration of low, medium and high skilled individuals between OECD countries and the rest of the world, and are largely confirmed by the data. We find that countries with higher aggregate relative deprivation, ceteris paribus, face higher emigration rates. The relationship between relative poverty and emigration rates is particularly strong for low skilled emigrants, who are likely to receive comparably low incomes. The sensitivity of emigration rates of high skilled individuals is considerably lower. The results suggest that differences in absolute income, and other measures of opportunities, are by no means sufficient to explain global migration flows and effective policies require the consideration of relative poverty and the distribution of income in the source countries of migrants.