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DAPP gives continuity to study about immigration as a vector of development for Brazil

Project maps new migratory cycles in Brazil and in the world with the aim of proposing adjustments in migration policy and administration

1 month ago

This year the FGV/DAPP Immigration and Development applied research group commenced a new series of studies to give continuity to reflection on the opportunities which immigration presents for Brazilian development. Using a multidisciplinary approach, the “Assessment of the potential impacts of new migratory cycles on Brazil” project maps the current migration scenario in Brazil and in the world, in different environments and senses.

The study aims at recommending, based on its results, adjustments in public policies for a more suitable guidance of Brazil’s insertion in new migratory flows with the aim of promoting national development. It is thus a development of the reference work entitled “Analysis and Assessment of the Institutional Development of Immigration Policy in Brazil for the Twenty-First Century,” which received the 2015 FGV Outstanding Applied Research Prize. The work carried out by the unit resulted in consultancy work for the Ministry of Labor (MTE), which traced alternatives for the modernization of the governance of immigration policy in Brazil, focusing on the vision of immigration as a strategic vector for development.

Based on its accumulated expertise in this area, with this project FGV/DAPP seeks to foresee the potential implications for Brazilian society and the Brazilian labor market of restrictive immigration policies in the United States and some European countries. It is believed that it will be possible to help Brazilian policies take advantage of the potentials of this scenario.

In 2015, the European Union faced the largest migratory crisis since the Second World War, with impacts on European society and numerous repercussions for international organizations working with the mitigation of the perverse effects on the immigrants who are part of these flows. The elevated flow of immigrants intensified the feeling of xenophobia among Europeans, although other factors also contributed to this: the crisis of the welfare state, which undermined social benefits; threats of terrorist attacks, which put the question of public security center stage; and the impact of these questions on the rise of parties from the extreme right.

Regional elections in Germany in 2015 and 2016 revealed the dissatisfaction of the population with the refugee policy adopted by Chancellor Angela Merkel. It should also be noted that one of the motivations for Brexit — the popular vote for the United Kingdom to leave the European Union in 2016 — was the increased presence of immigrants in the country. The issue of migration was also present in the  2016 elections in the United States and more recently in the first round of French elections in April 2017.

This international context of restrictive immigration laws on the part of developed countries and the worsening of the internal political and social scenario in Syria, Afghanistan, and Somalia, demands a potential for change in migratory flows to developing and/or emerging countries.

Given this international scenario, the project seeks to answer if Brazil is institutionally prepared for the entrance of immigrants. It will thus be investigated how the country is inserted in the new migratory flows in order to encourage development, as well as examining what are the impacts of this on the labor market, the demographic structure, and the perception of civil society.

Network analysis stage:

The monitoring of the public debate on the social networks seeks to map the reaction of civil society to new migratory flows. The analyses will be made based on focuses taking into account the specificity of each country considered for the study — France, the United Kingdom, Germany, Spain, the United States, and Brazil —, such as elections, periods of arrivals of new contingents of immigrants, and events such as terrorist attacks. Particularly in the Brazilian case, the research will accompany the perception of the population on social networks about the progress of the Migration Law through congress.

Flow analysis stage:

Information will be updated about international migration flows, using the databases of the Office of National Statistics, from the United Kingdom; Eurostat, the statistical authority of the European Union; and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). Its aim is to map the context of international migration in Europe in order to understand its dynamics through the profile of the European labor market and the workers who are part of this.

In addition, databases will be used from the Ministry of Labor of Brazil, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the International Labor Organization (ILO), and the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE) in relation to flows of migrants whose destination is Brazil and the adaptation characteristics of these individuals to Brazilian society and the Brazilian labor market. Using data from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the profile of migrants who ask for refuge in Brazil will be observed, in order to analyze, amongst other questions, their education levels and their establishment in the Brazilian labor market.


Quasi-experimental analysis stage:

A quantitative assessment will be carried out of the impact of the wave of Haitian immigration in Brazil on the labor market, using quasi-experimental methods. This assessment will allow the measurement of how the recent immigration phenomenon has affected the national labor market and to identify the potential impact of future waves of immigration to the country, if they occur, thereby making a contribution to public policies. The methodology consists of a set of statistical methods to select a sample as close as possible to the ideal control group, which would result from random selection.

The use of this methodology for the case of assessing the impact of the presence of Haitians in the Brazilian labor market is made possible because of the peculiarity of this wave of immigration: it has a clear beginning, after the occurrence of an earthquake in Haiti in January 2010. Added to this are two other factors: the evident difference, after the period in question, between the pre- and post- Haitian immigration situation and the fact that it is a large-scale phenomenon — it is estimated that between 40,000 and 70,000 Haitians have come to Brazil since the earthquake.


Demographic simulation stage:

The assessment of the population growth perspective will use the Demographic Simulator tool, developed previously by FGV, using the population projection for the country and potential productivity data. The aim is to assess the potential impact on economic performance of the alteration of the demographic reality, resulting from the entrance of immigrants. The tool will use simulations based on flexible statistical and mathematical models based on different potential immigration profiles, which can be mapped from the initial phase of this project, that of context.


Diretoria de Análise de Políticas Públicas | Fundação Getulio Vargas


Marco Aurelio Ruediger



Marco Aurelio Ruediger


Ana Lúcia Guedes

Wagner Oliveira

Janaína Fernandes

Danielle Sanches

Maria Isabel Couto

Lucas Calil

Tatiana Ruediger

Alexandre Spohr

Paula Duarte

Bárbara Barbosa

Cynthia Cunha

Miguel Orrillo

Andressa Falconiery

Beatriz Pinheiro


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