Moving from a poor economy to a rich one: A job tasks approach

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper studies outcomes for workers moving from a poor to a rich economy employing a job tasks based approach. It uses a data case, whereby a worker could decide to work in a richer economy and place himself there by a daily or weekly commute. This set-up faciliates the disentanglement of income differences motives from a plethora of other motives. Thus it eschews the bias inherent in many studies. The paper emphasizes the idea that tasks are tied to locations, and workers choose a location-task-wage ‘pack.’ The task demanded, which is a bundle of skills, constrains human capital returns for movers. Relatively low task returns generate a substantial offset to the productivity gain for migrants, stemming from the rich economy having higher TFP and capital.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102032
JournalLabour Economics
StatePublished - Oct 2021


  • Human capital differences
  • Location-task-wage bundle
  • Migrant tasks
  • Movers and stayers
  • Pure income effects
  • Rich and poor economies
  • Self-selection
  • TFP differentials

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management


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