Nikola Mirilovic, The Politics of Immigration: Dictatorship, Development, and Defense
The links between migration and security are understudied, and the empirical content of the immigration literature tends to be limited to case studies of western democracies. The conventional wisdom holds that democracies adopt liberal immigrant admissions policies. However, the opposite should be expected: dictatorship, along with economic development and large-scale security threats, tends to increase immigration. In immigration policymaking, officials' hands are not tied by supposed economic or demographic necessities or by domestic or international norms. The theory proposed in this article explains contemporary cross--national variation in and macrohistorical patterns of immigration policymaking. Econometric findings show that dictatorship and large-scale threats tend to increase migrant stocks and inflows, and that there is much more per capita migration into rich dictatorships than rich democracies.
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