Labor Immigration Policies in High-Income Countries: Variations Across Political Regimes and Varieties of Capitalism
The Journal of Legal Studies, Forthcoming
39 Pages Posted: 29 Nov 2017
Date Written: July 14, 2017
This paper analyses how and why labor immigration policies in high-income countries vary across political regimes (democracies vs autocracies) and types of capitalism (liberal vs. coordinated market economies). I investigate these policy variations based on a unique dataset of the characteristics of 77 labor immigration policies in 33 high-income countries. Compared to policies in democracies, labor immigration programs in autocracies are characterized by greater openness to labor immigration, more restrictions of migrants’ rights, and stronger trade-offs between openness and rights. With regard to variations across types of capitalism, I find that immigration programs in liberal market economies (LMEs) impose fewer limits on the employment conditions of migrants but they place more restrictions on migrants’ social rights than policies in coordinated market economies (CMEs). Policy trade-offs between openness and social rights are more likely to occur in LMEs with liberal welfare states than in CMEs with other types of welfare states.
Keywords: immigration, migrant rights, political regimes, varieties of capitalism, welfare states
JEL Classification: F22, H77, J15, J61, K27
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