Journal Article

Growth effects of nineteenth-century mass migrations: “Fome Zero” for Brazil?

Yvonne Stolz, Joerg Baten and Tarcísio Botelho

in European Review of Economic History

Volume 17, issue 1, pages 95-121
Published in print February 2013 | ISSN: 1361-4916
Published online February 2013 | e-ISSN: 1474-0044 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ereh/hes019
Growth effects of nineteenth-century mass migrations: “Fome Zero” for Brazil?

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We estimate a long-run trend of Brazilian human capital that extends back to the very beginning of the eighteenth century. With new data on selective immigration during the era of mass migrations at the end of the nineteenth century, we show that human capital endowment of international migrants can induce effects on economic development that persist until today. According to our estimations, the effect of selective immigration on real GDP per capita in the year 2000 is significant and equals around US$75 overall. As a reference, this value equals the amount poor Brazilians get to supplement their subsistence in the “Fome Zero” (Zero Hunger) program. We argue that human capital formation is a highly path-dependent and persistent process.

Journal Article.  13024 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Industrial History ; Labour History ; Economic History

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