Areas of Research

Motivations for migration

Why do people migrate? How can we identify the different reasons that mobilize individuals under different conditions? A study of the Mexico-U.S. flows, which uncovers four distinct types of migrants between 1970 and 2000. Each migrant type corresponds to a specific theoretical account, and becomes prevalent under specific economic, social and political conditions. 

Remittances and inequality

Why do migrant send remittances? A study of the Thai case, which finds that the evidence for various motivations is sensitive to migrant selectivity; and a short review piece.

How do remittances shape economic inequalities in origin communities? A study of the Mexico-U.S. case, which connects remittances to increasing wealth inequality in Mexico.

Social networks and inequality

How do social networks influence social inequality? A study that shows how social networks  characterized by homophily (ties between similar individuals) exacerbate inequality.

A review piece that provides a taxonomy of network effects and their implications for inequality.

Social networks and migration

How do social networks influence the diffusion of migration? Two studies of the internal migration flows in Thailand, which show that social ties can have differential effects on migration, and generate striking variations in aggregate migration flows over time. These findings explain why migration becomes widespread in some communities, while it remains minimally diffused in similar others.

A qualitative study of Mexico-U.S. migration, which identifies three social mechanisms underlying the network effects on migration.


Statistical methods

Applications of Bayesian inference, agent-based modeling and simulation, cluster analysis, matching methods, instrumental variables estimation, and selection models.