Comparative Politics Job Talk with Emily Sellars
DateDecember 1, 2014
Time12:00pm to 1:30pm
4357 Bunche Hall
Belinda SunnuPhone email@example.com
Presenter:Emily Sellars, University of Wisconsin–MadisonTitle: “Does Emigration Inhibit Political Reform? Evidence from the Mexican Agrarian Movement, 1916–1945″Abstract:Does emigration encourage or inhibit political reform? I investigate this question using data from a critical period in Mexican history. Following the Revolution in 1910, the Mexican government implemented a major redistributive land reform program. The program began during a period of high emigration from Mexico, but migration patterns were halted and reversed following the Stock Market Crash of 1929. Using a research design similar to a difference-in-differences approach, I demonstrate that there was a significant acceleration in land redistribution in high- relative to low-emigration states after the shock to emigration opportunities. Drawing on an original formal model and on archival research on the agrarian movement, I trace this outcome to the role of emigration in reducing political pressure on the government during the 1920s and to the importance of repatriates in the agrarian movement after 1930. These findings have important implications for understanding the political impacts of emigration and their development consequences.
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