Journal Article

Foreign assistance and migration choices: Disentangling the channels

Economics Letters, 172: 148-151

At least since the large refugee movements to the EU in 2015, many policymakers see foreign aid as a means to stem migrant inflows. Yet, little is known about the mechanisms through which foreign aid might affect migration decisions. To this end, we run gravity-type regressions for the aid categories  proposed by Clemens et al. (2012): (i) short-impact aid that may generate income growth in the short  to medium term, and (ii) late-impact aid that affects non-monetary dimensions of well-being such as the quality of public services but may lead to higher incomes only in the long run. We find a strongly negative impact of late-impact aid, which suggests that donors may be able to dampen migrant inflows by focusing on improved public services.


Dr. Mauro Lanati
Mauro Lanati


Publication Date
JEL Classification
F22, F35, O15