Labour Market

The MPC focuses on how Europe can resume economic growth while addressing demographic decline. On the one hand, the crisis has driven up unemployment and it falls to governments to protect citizens and migrants already there from any unfair competition that would come from new immigrants. On the other hand, unprecedented demographic changes are underway with population losses at working age that may call for replacement migration. In this context MPC concentrates on the four following topics:

  • Migration and competition in the labour market: the classical question “do immigrants reduce wages and increase unemployment in the receiving countries” has to be reframed in the context of overall employment reduction and shifting demand of goods and services in relation with population ageing.
  • Migration and innovation: the connection between highly-skilled migration and growth comes through innovation and the creation of human capital. With Europe competing with developed and emerging economies, innovation is a way to push competitiveness and the immigration of highly-skilled workers complements investment in education.
  • Migration and welfare systems: In the present recession the use of the welfare system has become a safety net which brings about distributive conflicts and there is an acute debate on non-citizens being a burden to the system. Research will broaden the scope to understand how immigration affects the balance between fiscal contribution and welfare benefits.
  • Migration and outsourcing: in response to European workers losing their jobs in connection with companies’ strategies of outsourcing, research will examine to which extent immigration, by bringing labour to capital, may discourage outsourcing and complement the native labour force.