ERIC Number: ED472782
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2002-Aug
Enclaves, Language and the Location Choice of Migrants. Discussion Paper.
Bauer, Thomas K.; Epstein, Gil S.; Gang, Ira N.
Empirical studies in the migration literature have shown that migration enclaves (networks) negatively affect the language proficiency of migrants. These studies, however, ignore the choice of location as a function of language skills. Using data on Mexican migration to the United States, this paper examines the location choice of migrants and connects the location decision with their language proficiency. It estimates a conditional logit model using data on Mexican-U.S. migration collected by the Mexican Migration Project. Data are based on an ethno-survey approach. Interviews are generally conducted from December to January, when sojourner U.S. migrants often return to Mexico. These interviews are supplemented with surveys of migrants located in the United States. Results show that Mexican migrants with good English proficiency will choose, on average, to migrate to destinations with smaller ethnic enclaves as their English language proficiency improves, while Mexican migrants with poor English proficiency will choose locations that have large enclaves (since as the size of the enclave increases, the need for using English decreases). Two appendixes contain a data description and an econometric model. (Adjunct ERIC Clearinghouse for ESL Literacy Education.) (Contains 16 references.) (SM)
Descriptors: English (Second Language), Ethnic Distribution, Geographic Location, Language Proficiency, Language Usage, Limited English Speaking, Mexican Americans, Migrants
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Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Institute for the Study of Labor, Bonn (Germany).