Skill Transferability, Migration, and Development: Evidence from Population Resettlement in Indonesia

55 Pages Posted: 20 Jun 2016

See all articles by Samuel Bazzi

Samuel Bazzi

Boston University - Department of Economics

Arya Gaduh

University of Arkansas

Alexander D. Rothenberg

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

Maisy Wong

The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania

Date Written: May 1, 2016

Abstract

We use a natural experiment in Indonesia to provide causal evidence on the role of location-specific human capital and skill transferability in shaping the spatial distribution of productivity. From 1979-1988, the Transmigration Program relocated two million migrants from rural Java and Bali to new rural settlements in the Outer Islands. Villages assigned migrants from regions with more similar agroclimatic endowments exhibit higher rice productivity and nighttime light intensity one to two decades later. We find some evidence of migrants' adaptation to agroclimatic change. Overall, our results suggest that regional productivity differences may overstate the potential gains from migration.

Suggested Citation

Bazzi, Samuel and Gaduh, Arya and Rothenberg, Alexander D. and Wong, Maisy, Skill Transferability, Migration, and Development: Evidence from Population Resettlement in Indonesia (May 1, 2016). The Wharton School Research Paper No. 94, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2797476

Samuel Bazzi (Contact Author)

Boston University - Department of Economics ( email )

270 Bay State Road
Boston, MA 02215
United States

Arya Gaduh

University of Arkansas ( email )

402 Business Building
Fayetteville, AR 72701
United States
1-479-575-8776 (Phone)

Alexander D. Rothenberg

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System ( email )

20th and C Streets NW
Washington, DC 20551
United States

Maisy Wong

The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania ( email )

3641 Locust Walk
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6365
United States
215-746-3470 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://maisy.wharton.upenn.edu/

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
74
Abstract Views
816
rank
386,635
PlumX Metrics