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Migration: an economic and social analysis 

Home Office Occasional Paper No. 67, January 2001
by Stephen Glover, Ceri Gott, Anaïs Loizllon, Jonathan Portes, Richard Price, Vasanthi Srinivasan ,Sarah Spencer, Carole Willis 


Download: Download it here from the Home Office webpage

This was one of the first serious attempts to study of the social and economic impacts of migration in the UK.  The report, downloadable above, is written to be accessible to non-economists.

Its findings challenge the myth that migrants are somehow a drain on the economy, which has obscured objective policy debate for decades. In particular we find that: 

  • Migrants experience mixed success in the labour market, but on average earn more than the existing population, contributing to economic growth.
  • There is little evidence that migration damages the employment prospects of existing resident workers, although more research is needed in this area. The research suggests that migrants fill labour market gaps reducing inflationary pressures and improving productivity. 
  • Migrants make significant cultural and social contributions to UK society, including a widening of consumer choice and the contributions of many notable figures in the arts, academia, medicine, science and sport.
  • Reduced transport and transaction costs and increased economic integration, as a result of globalisation, have led to increased flows of people around the world in recent years, both to and from the UK.
  • There is a need for more research in this area - indeed, it is striking how little research on migration there has been in the UK. In particular we need more analysis into the congestion and regeneration effects of migration, any distributional implications, the social contribution made by migrants, and the implications of migration for source countries.
  The pathbreaking approach developed in this report has since been replicated and updated by academic and government researchers.  

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