Introducing the Economics of Immigration

Economics of Immigration Series

The Chicago Policy Review is pleased to present a new special series on immigration. Originally conceived in October 2016, the Review did not anticipate that the timing of this series would be so relevant. Currently, the economic and cultural impacts of immigration are taking center stage in U.S. political and policy debates. The outcomes of this ongoing debate are uncertain, but we hope that our presentation of a synthesis of current research will help us make sense of these questions.

In this context, the Chicago Policy Review aims to fulfill its mission by presenting the most respected sources on the effects of immigration to help inform the public debate. While immigration policy affects many domains—from the cultural to the political—this series will focus on economic policy implications. Analysis of immigration policy effects on wages, native unemployment, and factors for growth are the areas of highest concern and debate in the public discussion. We have thus targeted our selection of academic pieces accordingly.

Readers will find expert consensus on some issues, such as how immigration benefits the overall economy and educated workers. They will also find conflicting opinions about the effects of immigration on low-skilled native workers with low levels of education. Whether unskilled citizens adjust well to the influx of low-skilled immigrants, and if so, how quickly they can do so, will continue to be a source of debate in the near future. No empirical evidence can answer normative questions about fairness, national obligations to native workers, or national ideals. Insofar as evidence has a role to play, though, we leave the essays to speak for them.


Nick Pellow, Senior Editor, Finance & Economics



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Nicholas Pellow

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