US Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas – International Migration Remains the Last Frontier of Globalization

The cross-border flow of people, or international migration, is by far the most politically charged aspect of globalization and the one with seemingly the least progress in recent decades. Migration is a truly global phenomenon, and the cross-border movement of people today is arguably on the same scale as during the great migrations at the turn of the 20th century. By most estimates, the average citizen of the world would be better off with more open borders. However, these estimates are typically predicated on strong assumptions about how the world works, such as the interaction between migration and the provision of public goods and services such as education, Social Security and unemployment insurance. While the cross-border flow of workers may never be as free as the crossborder flow of goods and capital or ideas, even the levels of migration that prevail today may generate significant welfare gains to host and home countries.

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SOURCE: Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas