For best experience please turn on javascript and use a modern browser!

Measuring Immigration Policies: Preliminary Evidence from IMPALA

By Michel Beine, Brian Burgoon, Mary Crock, Justin Gest, Michael Hiscox, Patrick McGovern, Hillel Rapoport and Eiko Thielemann


This article presents the methods and preliminary findings from IMPALA, a database that systematically measures the character and stringency of immigration policies. Based on a selection of data for six pilot countries between 1990 and 2008, we document the variation of immigration policies across countries and over time. We focus on three specific dimensions: the number of entry tracks for economic workers; the measurement and role of bilateral agreements that complement unilateral immigration policies, and aggregation procedures that allow for gauging the stringency of immigration regulations comparatively.


International migration, government policy and regulation, labour economics policies

Publication details

CESifo Economic Studies (2015), 61 (3), 527–59. doi: 10.1093/cesifo/ifu038

Download article