Destabilization, Migration and Multiplication: Unintended Consequences of U.S. Foreign Policy in the Americas

Susana Quiros, Pennsylvania State University
Marta Tienda, Princeton University

A large literature has investigated the growing volume of unauthorized migration, but comparatively few studies have empirically examined how admission policies have reshaped the size and composition of legal immigration from the region. Using administrative data on new legal permanent residents, we estimate family unification migration multipliers to investigate the pathways to US residence pursued by immigrants from Latin America, differentiating between Central and South American nations. Given their longer history in the U.S., it is not surprising that family unification has benefited Mexicans. However, preliminary results suggest that Dominicans have been the group that has taken full advantage of family unification provisions. While family unification has also benefited Central Americans, the total number of family immigrants from Central America is lower than that of Dominicans.

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 Presented in Session P6. Migration and Urbanization/Population, Development, and the Environment