Zimmermann delivered keynote on Migration & Wellbeing in Kyiv

International Conference “People Matter: Quality of Life and Population Wellbeing in Post-Transition Economies organized by the Kyiv School of Economics and VoxUkraine on September 14-15, 2017 in Kyiv in Ukraine. Available: full program of the conference. The organizing committee of the conference included GLO Fellow Olena Nizalova (University of Kent), Yuri Gorodnichenko (University of California, Berkley), Tymofiy Mylovanov (Kyiv School of Economics and University of Pittsburgh), Mariya Aleksynska (ILO), and Olga Kupets (Kyiv School of Economics).

GLO Fellow Olena Nizalova (University of Kent), Conference Chair, while opening the conference:

Klaus F. Zimmermann (UNU-MERIT, Maastricht University and President of the Global Labor Organization – GLO) had provided a keynote lecture on “Migration and Wellbeing” on September 14. He also chaired a policy panel on “Migration caused by conflicts: Wellbeing of refugees and internally displaced people”.

In his keynote lecture, Zimmermann stressed his personal research interest dealing with Ukrainian issues. He had supported early on as former President of the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin) and as Founding Director of the Bonn-based Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) the creation of the well-known and influential Ukrainian Longitudinal Monitoring Survey (ULMS). The creation of the data set was done by research teams headed by Hartmut Lehmann (University of Bologna), also present at the conference. On September 14, also an entire session of the event (ULMS: Peculiarities of Panel Data Collection in Post-Soviet Context) chaired by Olga Kupets (Kyiv School of Economics) discussed challenges of the ULMS data creation in the transition context.

Zimmermann underlined the visionary aspect of this venture and its big success. The survey is discussed in a review paper; Zimmermann was also involved in two papers dealing with the economic and political consequences of the Russian – Ukrainian ethnic divide in transition:

►H. Lehmann, A. Muravyev and K. F. Zimmermann: The Ukrainian Longitudinal Monitoring Survey: Towards a Better Understanding of Labor Markets in Transition, IZA Journal of Labor and Development, 1 (2012).

►A. Constant, M. Kahanec and K. F. Zimmermann: The Russian-Ukrainian Earnings Divide, Economics of Transition, 20 (2012), 1-35.

►A. Constant, M. Kahanec and K. F. Zimmermann: The Russian-Ukrainian Political Divide, Eastern European Economics, 49 (2011), 97-109.

Zimmmermann also mentioned his advisory work for the EU Commission, which lead also to the publication of an article about Ukrainian – German migration and the potentials for future migration flows:

►C. Biavaschi and K. F. Zimmermann: Eastern Partnership Migrants in Germany: Outcomes, Potentials and Challenges, IZA Journal of European Labor Studies, 3 (2014)

Unfortunately, IZA has terminated (“merged”) the publication of both journals, the IZA Journal of Labor and Development and IZA Journal of European Labor Studies in 2017 after Zimmermann had left IZA in 2016.

Klaus F. Zimmermann (UNU-MERIT and GLO)


In his conference keynote on “Migration & Wellbeing”, Zimmermann dealt with the following issues:

(1) The Value of Mobility

(2) GDP or Happiness?

(3) Measurement of Happiness and Wellbeing

(4) Research Questions

(5) Migration and the Wellbeing of the Natives

(6) Wellbeing of Migrants and Conditions at Home

(7) Migrants Abroad and the Wellbeing of the Left Behind

(8) Conclusions and Challenges

His overview was based on the following key publications:

(5) Wellbeing of the Natives:

►A. Akay, A. Constant and C. Giulietti: The Impact of Immigration on the Well-Being of Natives, Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, (2014), 103, 72-92.

►A. Akay, A. Constant, C. Giulietti, and M. Guzi: Ethnic Diversity and Well-Being, Journal of Population Economics, (2017), 30, 265-306.

►M. Kuroki: Racial Diversity, Immigrants and the Well-being of Residents: Evidence from US Counties, Forthcoming, Journal of Population Economics, (2018). https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00148-017-0657-9; GLO Discussion Paper, No. 76.

►N. B. Simpson, Happiness and Migration, in. A. Constant and K. F. Zimmermann (Eds.), International Handbook on the Economics of Migration, Edward Elgar, (2013), 393-407.

►W. Betz and N. B. Simpson, The Effects of International Migration on the Well-being of Native Populations in Europe, IZA Journal of Migration, 2013,2.

(6) Migrants’ Wellbeing and Macroeconomic Conditions

Akay, O. Bargain and K. F. Zimmermann: Home Sweet Home? Macroeconomic Conditions in Home Countries and the Well-Being of Migrants, Journal of Human Resources, 52 (2017), 351-373.

(7) Migrants Abroad and the Wellbeing of the Left Behind


►A. Akay, C. Giulietti, J.D. Robalino and K. F. Zimmermann: Remittances and Well-Being among Rural-to-Urban Migrants in China, Review of Economics of the Household, 12 (2014), 517-546.

► M. Akgüc, C. Giulietti and K. F.Zimmermann: The RUMiC Longitudinal Survey: Fostering Research on Labor Markets in China, IZA Journal of Labor & Development, 2014, 3:5

► A. Akay, O. Bargain, C. Guilietti, J. D. Robalino and K. F.Zimmermann: Remittances and Relative Concerns in Rural China, China Economic Review, 37 (2016), 191-207.

Social Remittances:

►M. Nikolova, M. Roman and K. F. Zimmermann: Left Behind but Doing Good? Civic Engagement in Two Post-Socialist Countries. Journal of Comparative Economics, 45 (2017), 658–684.


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