Do migrants from Eastern European countries become happier once they have settled in Western Europe?
A University of Leicester sociologist has investigated this question – and the answer might make potential migrants think twice before packing their bags. Most migrants were no happier after migration – and migrants from Poland were significantly less happy.
In a paper published in ‘Migration Studies’, Dr David Bartram analyses data from the European Social Survey of more than 42,000 people to try and determine whether happiness can be gained by moving to another country.
Dr Bartram’s research compared the happiness of migrants to the happiness of people remaining in the country the migrants had left (‘stayers’).
“Migrants from eastern Europe do not appear to have gained happiness via migration to western Europe. Migrants are happier than stayers – but the analysis suggests that migrants were already happier than stayers, even prior to migration. So, the happiness advantage of migrants doesn’t emerge as a consequence of migration; that advantage was already present before migration,” he said.
“In general, research on happiness indicates that people don’t make lasting gains in happiness when they gain an increase in their incomes”, said Dr Bartram.
“Migrants, however, might be able to increase their incomes quite a lot by moving to a wealthier country. Even if they do, though, they might end up in a lower ‘relative’ position in the destination country – and relative position usually matters more for happiness than one’s ‘spending power’ or ‘absolute income’”.
Dr Bartram, of the Department of Sociology, found that migrants from Eastern Europe as a whole do not appear to have gained happiness by migrating to Western Europe. However, it depends on where the migrant comes from.
He said: “If average happiness is quite low in the origin country such as Russia and Turkey, then an increase in happiness would likely occur. However, for a country such as Poland where people are generally happier (at least in comparison to Russia, for example), there appears to be decrease in happiness for those who go to western Europe.”
Dr Bartram explains that his research is important for those who are considering migrating to a wealthier country in order to try and gain income and become happier.
“It raises the possibility that people who think life is better in wealthier countries – and who thus go to a wealthier county to try and improve their own lives – might be disappointed by what they experience there.”
NOTE TO NEWSDESK:
FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT DR BARTRAM ON 0116 2522724.
University of Leicester Press Office Contacts:
News Centre Assistant
Tel: 0116 229 7467
Corporate News Officer
Tel: 0116 252 2415
The country is calling its children back, but most seem unwilling to risk returning to an unstable environment.
Read full post here
Source: Mail & Guardian
Doctors who have kept the NHS going are leaving the UK to care for ageing parents overseas due to immigration rule changes, the BMA has warned.
Institute of Race Relations News continues its discussion with A. Sivanandan about Miliband’s policies.
HATNews is precluded from expressing a corporate view: any opinions expressed are therefore those of the authors.
(IRIN) – Hamid’s parents migrated from Afghanistan before he was born and he grew up in Iran where life as an unregistered refugee was hard, particularly after his father returned to Afghanistan never to be heard from again. At the age of 15, Hamid paid smugglers to get him into Europe using money his two older brothers had raised from selling off their tailoring business.
Figures from the Office for National Statistics published today show estimated net migration in the UK has fallen to 216,000 in the year to December 2011, from 252,000 to the year to December 2010, as a raft of recent reforms to the immigration system start to bite.
(IRIN) – When Abdo Giro*, a 55-year-old evangelist minister and political dissident from southern Ethiopia, paid smugglers 55,000 birr (US$3,095) to take him from the Kenyan border town of Moyale to Johannesburg in South Africa, he was completely unprepared for the ordeal that lay ahead.
This report online: http://www.irinnews.org/report.aspx?reportID=95845
Source: Free Movement
The Sunday Telegraph yesterday published an article singling out three Senior Immigration Judges as being excessively lenient. I am going to more or less ignore the issue of the correctness or otherwise of the principle of singling out judges based on outcomes of their cases. It is a very difficult question. I am also, usually, going to exercise restraint and express no opinion on whether the label of leniency has been correctly applied to the judges concerned. Instead, this post looks at the evidential basis for the assertions in the article.
It would not be at all surprising if the judges in question were to receive hate mail and experience other consequences as a result of this article. This is presumably the very purpose of singling them out, naming them and providing some personal details about them. One would therefore hope that if an exercise like this were to be carried out, it would be done very carefully.
The first point to make is that Senior Immigration Judges (a courtesy title, they are in fact Judges of the Upper Tribunal) almost only ever sit on second stage appeals from a Judge of the First-tier Tribunal. Their jurisdiction is limited to errors of law. The question of whether they allow an appeal will depend on whether there was an error of law by the original judge. Disagreeing with the outcome of the case does not of itself disclose an error of law. If there is no error of law then the appeal judge must dismiss the appeal no matter what that judge might have done him or herself if hearing the appeal on its merits.
Secondly, I would not trust these journalists to read the cases and actually understand what ‘allowed’ or ‘dismissed’ means at the end of the reasons in the context of the individual case. Many of these appeals will have been appeals by the Secretary of State, because the Secretary of State has a policy of appealing every single deportation case in which the migrant succeeds at the First-tier Tribunal. When the words ‘appeal allowed’ appear at the end of the reasons, this may well mean that the Secretary of State’s appeal was allowed and therefore that the migrant had lost his or her case.
Thirdly, if the journalists only used reported cases for their sample then they are using only the very limited range of determinations considered to be important enough for the tribunal’s secretive reporting committee to have selected for public consumption.
Lastly, as Richard Moorhead points out, for the exercise to be done in any meaningful way it would have to be done FAR more carefully than seems likely from the article and the sample size involved is so small that it is meaningless in a statistical sense.
The article isn’t really about statistics, though, it is about foreign criminals and the allegedly soft class of judges who allow them to stay in the UK. The named individuals have just been unlucky enough to be caught in crossfire, their names thrown up randomly by a hopelessly flawed witch hunt.
It is impossible to tell how the ‘research’ was carried out because the journalists do not say. As Richard Moorhead has said over on the UK Human Rights Blog in a comment, it is unlikely that the research was carried out in a remotely rigorous academic fashion. The most likely possibilities are (1) simply looking at the online repositories of reported immigration cases, either on BAILII or the tribunal website, (2) looking at the unreported archive of cases stored on the tribunal website (3) popping down to the Supreme Court library at which all Upper Tribunal determinations are still, I think, lodged, or (4) using a Freedom of Information request for case law rather than statistics. The tribunal has claimed not to keep any statistics on individual judges (other than their ‘performance’ in dismissing adjournment requests) and the way the article is written suggests that it is based on a case trawl rather than on statistical data.
Research options (2) and (4) seem most likely. Let us assume for arguments sake that a newspaper that regularly runs anti human rights stories was seeking to name and shame some immigration judges no matter how tenuous the basis for doing so. Let us also assume that one of the journalists has poor form for legal reporting. Little time would have been invested in the exercise. Let us also assume for present purposes that the journalists themselves carried out the research, although it is equally if not more likely that the information was handed to them by another organisation such as Migration Watch UK or an MP’s intern.
If anyone wanted to carry out this research properly, they would need access to all the determinations of the First-tier Tribunal. For the reasons above, determinations of the Upper Tribunal relied on in the article are basically worthless for its purported purpose. To criticise the research methods misses the point, though: it is a shoddy exercise in politics and intimidation.
Migrants who are new to the UK are being exploited by landlords and living in appalling conditions, according to a report by the Housing and Migration Network.
Source: Housing Excellence
UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants, François Crépeau, has urged the international community to embrace a new, balanced discourse on migration based on equal rights, non-discrimination and dignity, as well as on reality.