Highly- skilled migration and the promotion of entrepreneurship in

The economic impact of migration: UK
and the West Midlands
George Windsor
West Midlands Economic Forum, October 2013
This Presentation
My research
UK context
West Midlands
 Commenced 1 December 2011
 Co-funded by Loughborough University and
Paragon Law Ltd.
 Supervisors: Dr. Liz Mavroudi; Dr. Adam Warren
My research (1)
Highly skilled migration and the promotion of
entrepreneurship in the UK
Non-EEA migrants
Points Based System (PBS)
Focusing on Tier 1 Migrants
Tier 1 Entrepreneur
Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur
1. How is non-EEA high skilled entrepreneurial migration incentivised in
the UK?
- How does this relate to place?
2. How do non-EEA high skilled migrants negotiate UK migration policy?
3. How do non-EEA high skilled entrepreneurial migrants interact with
social and cultural life between the UK and their home country?
My research (2)
 National and regional manifestation of migration
and fiscal policy and its impact on non EEA
 Participants: 57 Interviewees
 Policy impact: Feedback and dissemination
 Migration as variegated and complex
 Multi-scalar geographies of migration
 Flows of people and knowledge through defined spaces
and geographies
 Measuring migration
International Passenger Survey (IPS)
Labour Force Survey (LFS)
Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA) data
Home Office data on asylum seekers and their dependents
= Long-Term International Migration (LTIM)
UK context
My focus: Political geography
Points Based System for non EEA migrants
High value, highly qualified, high capital: Tier 1 PBS
Liberal paradox (Hollifield 2004)
Total migration: 497,000 people immigrated to the UK in the year ending
December 2012, which is a statistically significant decline from the 566,000
who immigrated during the previous year (ONS 2013)
Labour migration: 179,000 immigrated to the UK in the year ending
December 2012 (ONS 2013)
International students: 180,000 immigrants arrived in the UK for formal study
in the year ending December 2012 (ONS 2013)
Tier 1 (High value) migrants: year ending June 2013 fall in numbers with the
previous 12 months, from 21,397 to 12,419 (-8,978) (Home Office 2013)
Fall in grants of extensions in the year ending June 2013, from 85,036 to
72,649 (-12,387) (Home Office 2013)
West Midlands (1)
Migration: In 2010, international migration resulted in a net increase of 13,000
people in the region. The net change from interregional migration was -8,000;
that is 8,000 more people moved out of the region to other parts of the UK than
arrived from other regions. (ONS 2013)
Labour Force Survey (LFS): there were around 122,000 non-UK nationals in
employment in the West Midlands in summer 2006, representing 4.9% of total
employment, of whom 86,000 had entered the UK since 1991 and 54,000 had
entered since 2001. (Green et al. 2007)
Skills and labour shortage
Importance of institutional framework
Economic impact could be positive or negative
West Midlands (2)
West Midlands Migrant Worker Employer Survey
 Respondents to the West Midlands Migrant Worker Employer Survey
were asked to assess the overall impact of employing migrant workers
on their business:
 47% of employers surveyed reported a positive impact - with:
 36% indicating the impact as ‘very positive, with few problems’, and
 11% reporting that the overall experience was ‘generally positive, but
with some problems’
 48% of employers reported ‘overall little change’ in business
 No employers cited a negative impact
 The remainder didn’t know or refused to answer.
(Green et al. 2007: 121)
West Midlands (3)
West Midlands Migrant Worker Employer Survey
(Green et al. 2007)
West Midlands (4)
West Midlands Migrant Worker Employer Survey
 “The economy would not possibly be as buoyant in
this area without migrant workers. … There is no
way on this earth you can sustain the economy
without them.”
 “They spend money, they work, they earn money
and they spend money.”
(Green et al. 2007: 124)
West Midlands and Birmingham (5)
 Highly skilled migration and the proliferation of Creative Industries in
 ‘The research confirms that ‘hard’ economic factors (career and
employment opportunities; education and universities; cost of living
and affordability of housing) play a key role in the decision of
individuals to come to the Birmingham city-region and these factors are
more influential in comparison with soft ‘quality of life’ factors in
attracting talent.’ (Brown et al. 2009a: 1)
 ‘…challenges as a result of its industrial history and which as yet have
not been completely overcome - despite a policy focus on physical
regeneration and the economic restructuring/diversification that has
occurred over the last 15 years.’ (Brown et al 2009a: 4)
West Midlands and Birmingham (6)
 ‘service sector growth has been focused around Birmingham,
commencing with an ambitious strategy of economic and physical
regeneration the 1980s and 1990s which formed the catalyst in the
transformation of the industrial/financial/service base of the city. Since
the mid-1980s, Birmingham has tried to establish itself as an important
exhibition and conference centre, notably with the construction of the
International Convention Centre (ICC) and the National Exhibition
Centre (NEC) and has focused on ‘business tourism’ to boost service
sector employment. Nonetheless, it is only in within the last decade or
so that the expanding service sector has made a significant impact on
the city and region in terms of Gross Value Added (GVA) and this has
corresponded with substantial employment growth in the financial and
professional business services sector.’ (Brown et al. 2009a: 8)
 Positive and negative impacts on West Midlands
 Status as multicultural hub promotes economic
 Migration important for local and regional
economic performance
 Questions?
 Discussion
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