Country-Specific Investments and the Rights of Non-Citizen
14 Pages Posted: 12 May 2017 Last revised: 14 Jul 2017
Date Written: Febuary 3, 2017
In a 2007 article, Adam Cox and Eric Posner developed a “Second Order” theory of immigration law that offered predictions about when countries are likely to provide non-citizens with strong legal protections from removal. They argued that states benefit when migrants make “country-specific” investments, but that migrants are only willing to make those investments when they are afforded strong legal protections that would secure their place in the host country. One implication of this theory was that because countries with less common national languages require greater country-specific investments from migrants, those countries are likely to provide migrants with strong legal protections. In this essay, we empirically evaluate that hypothesis. Consistent with the theory, we find that countries with less common national languages are more likely to provide a Right to Asylum in their constitution or sign Bilateral Labor Agreements.
Keywords: Human Rights, Migration, Immigration, Bilateral Labor Agreements
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