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2022/2023  KAN-CCMVI2120U  Migration, Business and Society

English Title
Migration, Business and Society

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Elective
Level Full Degree Master
Duration Summer
Start time of the course Summer
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Max. participants 60
Study board
Study Board for MSc in Economics and Business Administration
Course coordinator
  • Paolo Santini - Department of Strategy and Innovation (SI)
  • Yajna Govind - Department of Economics (ECON)
The course coordination will be shared equally between Paolo Santini (pasa.si@cbs.dk) and Yajna Govind (yg.eco@cbs.dk). For academic questions related to the course, please contact the course coordinators.
Main academic disciplines
  • Globalisation and international business
  • Innovation
  • Economics
Teaching methods
  • Face-to-face teaching
Last updated on 16-11-2022

Relevant links

Learning objectives
Upon successfully completing this course, students should be able to:
  • Demonstrate a good knowledge of migration economics and its challenges for individuals, businesses and societies
  • Recognise the driving forces and the economic, business, social, and policy aspects of migration.
  • Identify the benefits and costs of migration for individuals, business, and host and sending countries. (e.g., what are the effects of large migrants’ inflows in developed countries and large departures from developing ones for businesses and societies?)
  • Balance these costs and benefits to design appropriate policies that would benefit the society as whole.
Course prerequisites
Completed Bachelor degree or equivalent. Some basic knowledge of Statistical Methods. Interest in migration, public policy, and business development.
Migration, Business and Society:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Individual exam
Size of written product Max. 15 pages
Assignment type Written assignment
Duration Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
Grading scale 7-point grading scale
Examiner(s) One internal examiner
Exam period Summer
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
Retake exam: 72-hours, maximum 10-page home assignment.
If the number of registered candidates for the make-up examination/re-take examination warrants that it may most appropriately be held as an oral examination, the programme office will inform the students that the make-up examination/re-take examination will be held as an oral examination instead.

3rd attempt (2nd retake): The second retake is always an online oral exam (20 minutes online oral exam with no preparation time) with one internal examiner and an internal co-examiner.
Course content, structure and pedagogical approach

Course content:

Migration represents one of the biggest humanities’ challenges of the future. In fact, due to climate change, wars, and large economic inequalities, massive movements of individuals across the globe are expected in the following decades. Indeed, in the 2030 Agenda, the UN recognises that migration is a cross-cutting issue relevant to all of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Migration brings transformation in individuals’ lives, businesses and societies and raises many questions, for instance: How successfully are first- and second-generation migrants integrated in the host countries? Do businesses benefit from a more diverse labor force? How are sending and receiving societies impacted by migration? To address these questions, it is important to grasp underlying concepts and facts about migration, and to explore the different effects of migration at different levels.


This course's objective is to underline the challenges, but also the potential benefits, that migration represents for modern businesses and societies. To do so, the course will take an analytical approach to introduce students to the topic of migration at three different levels. At the individual level, the course will present the challenges faced by migrants to integrate in the labor market as well as the effect of competition created by migrants on natives’ wages. At the business level, the course will present theories and evidence of the benefits and costs of increasing diversity. It will explore topics such as policies impacting businesses put in place to attract high-skilled immigrants and inventors in the “global race for talent”. Additionally, it will address the benefits from increased global connections for businesses. Finally, at the societal level, the course will look at the overall contributions and challenges of migration as well as the main policies that have been implemented to address them. 


Overall, this course aims to equip students with critical thinking skills on the topic of migration by introducing them to the literature and current issues in the economics of immigration and explore what migration means for businesses. Given the interactive nature of this class, students will develop the ability to present and discuss this topic and their ideas in a convincing and confident way. In addition to face-to-face lectures, we aim to have 2 external guest speakers, one from an NGO or international organization, one from the business world.



Course structure:

The course will cover the following themes:

  • Migration: An introduction to the concepts and facts. Theory and estimations of migrants’ selection: Self-selection and earnings

  • Theory and empirical evidence of the effect of migrants on the labor market: natives’ wages and employment, job creation and job competition 

  • Migrants’ labor market integration and integration policies in developed countries such as France, Denmark and the U.S.

  • Co-ethnic networks; migrants’ segregation and ethnic enclaves; discrimination; situation of first and second-generation migrants

  • Businesses’ response to migration inflows of high-skills and low-skills migrants

  • Impact of country of origin diversity on the productivity and innovation rates of businesses

  • Migrants, trade, and Foreign-Direct Investment (FDI)

  • High-skill immigration and human capital externalities; taxation and superstar movements 

  • The political economy of migration; political responses; attitudes towards immigrants, and attitudes towards redistribution

  • Welfare state and migration policies

Description of the teaching methods
This course will be entirely face-to-face with some blended-learning aspects. Students will discuss and present existing research work in groups, followed by an in-class open discussion. It will take a very interactive approach where students can discuss in groups. Students will obtain continuous feedback during the course duration.
Feedback during the teaching period
Continuous feedback
Student workload
Preliminary assignment 20 hours
Classroom attendance 33 hours
Examination 20 hours
Preparation 126 hours
Feedback activity 7 hours
Further Information

This is a 3-weeks course.


Preliminary assignment: The course coordinator uploads Preliminary Assignment on Canvas at the end of May. It is expected that students participate as it will be included in the final exam, but the assignment is without independent assessment and grading.


Course and exam timetable is/will be available on  https://www.cbs.dk/uddannelse/international-summer-university-programme-isup/courses-and-exams


We reserve the right to cancel the course if we do not get enough applications. This will be communicated on https://www.cbs.dk/en/study/international-summer-university/courses-and-exams in start March.

Expected literature

Preliminary references list:


  • Card, D. (1990), “The Impact of the Mariel Boatlift on the Miami Labor Market", Industrial and Labor Relations Review, Vol. 43 (2), pp. 245-257

  • Govind, Y. (2021). Is naturalization a passport for labor market integration HAL working paper N° 2021-42.

  • Arendt, J. N., Dustmann, C., & Ku, H. (2022). Refugee migration and the labour market: lessons from 40 years of post-arrival policies in Denmark. Oxford Review of Economic Policy, 38(3), 531-556.

  • Algan, Y., Dustmann, C., Glitz, A., & Manning, A. (2010). The economic situation of first and second-generation immigrants in France, Germany and the United Kingdom.



  • Beerli, A., Ruffner, J., Siegenthaler, M., & Peri, G. (2021). The abolition of immigration restrictions and the performance of firms and workers: Evidence from Switzerland. American Economic Review, 111(3), 976-1012.

  • Niebuhr, A. (2010). Migration and innovation: Does cultural diversity matter for regional R&D activity?. Papers in Regional Science, 89(3), 563-585.

  • Bahar, D., Choudhury, P., Sappenfield, J., & Signorelli, S. (2022). Human Mobility and the Globalization of Knowledge Production: Causal Evidence from Multinational Enterprises. Harvard Business School Technology & Operations Mgt. Unit Working Paper, (22-047).

  • Parsons, C., & Vézina, P. L. (2018). Migrant networks and trade: The Vietnamese boat people as a natural experiment. The Economic Journal, 128(612), F210-F234.

  • Kugler, M., & Rapoport, H. (2011). Migration, FDI and the Margins of Trade. CID Working Paper Series.



  • Kleven, H., Landais, C., Munoz, M., & Stantcheva, S. (2020). Taxation and migration: Evidence and policy implications. Journal of Economic Perspectives, 34(2), 119-42.

  • Alesina, A., Miano, A., & Stantcheva, S. (2018). Immigration and redistribution (No. w24733). National Bureau of Economic Research.

  • Steinmayr, A. (2021). Contact versus exposure: Refugee presence and voting for the far right. Review of Economics and Statistics, 103(2), 310-327.

  • Moraga, J. F. H., & Rapoport, H. (2014). Tradable immigration quotas. Journal of Public Economics, 115, 94-108.


Additional readings:

  • Edo, A., Ragot, L., Rapoport, H., Sardoschau, S., Steinmayr, A., & Sweetman, A. (2020). An introduction to the economics of immigration in OECD countries. Canadian Journal of Economics/Revue canadienne d'économie, 53(4), 1365-1403.

  • Edin, P. A., Fredriksson, P., & Åslund, O. (2003). Ethnic enclaves and the economic success of immigrants—Evidence from a natural experiment. The quarterly journal of economics, 118(1), 329-357.

  • Damm, A. P. (2009), “Ethnic Enclaves and Immigrant Labor Market Outcomes: Quasi-Experimental Evidence", Journal of Labor Economics, Vol. 27 (2), pp. 281-314

  • Chiquiar, D. and G. Hanson (2005), International Migration, Self-Selection, and the Distribution of Wages: Evidence from Mexico and the United States", Journal of Political Economy, Vol. 113 (2), pp. 239-281

  • Foley, C. F., & Kerr, W. R. 2013. Ethnic Innovation and U.S. Multinational Firm Activity. Management Science, 59(7): 1529–1544.

  • Choudhury, P. 2016. Return migration and geography of innovation in MNEs: A natural experiment of knowledge production by local workers reporting to return migrants. Journal of Economic Geography, 16(3): 585–610.

  • Bahar, D., Choudhury, P., & Rapoport, H. (2020). Migrant inventors and the technological advantage of nations. Research Policy, 49(9): 103947.

  • Shrestha, S. A. (2017). No man left behind: Effects of emigration prospects on educational and labour outcomes of non‐migrants. The Economic Journal, 127(600), 495-521.

  • Kleven, H. J., Landais, C., & Saez, E. (2013). Taxation and international migration of superstars: Evidence from the European football market. American economic review, 103(5), 1892-1924.

  • Kleven, H. J., Landais, C., Saez, E., & Schultz, E. (2014). Migration and wage effects of taxing top earners: Evidence from the foreigners’ tax scheme in Denmark. The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 129(1), 333-378.

  • Pinotti, P. (2017). Clicking on heaven's door: The effect of immigrant legalization on crime. American Economic Review, 107(1), 138-68.

Last updated on 16-11-2022