Migrant Networks and Job Search: Evidence from Thailand
Eik Leong Swee
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND CULTURAL CHANGE | UNIV CHICAGO PRESS | Published : 2017
Social networks may be important to internal migrants in developing countries where the extent of information asymmetry is sizable. This paper identifies network effects among rural-urban migrants in Thailand by exploiting heterogeneous response to rainfall shocks as exogenous variation affecting network size. While networks substantially reduce the duration of job search, in this case they tend to direct migrants toward agricultural (rather than nonagricultural) jobs because the local average treatment effects estimator identifies what happens to employment outcomes when the agricultural part of the network increases.