Immigrant entrepreneurs continue to be a hot topic for study (see posting from February), but recently came across a survey in Mexico that I would like to highlight. According to the Mexican Family Life Survey (MxFLS) website, "MxFLS is the first Mexican survey with national representation departing from a longitudinal design, tracking the Mexican population for long periods of time regardless of migration decisions with the objective of studying the dynamics of economy, demographics, epidemiology, and population migration throughout this panel study of at least, a 10-year span." The Mexican Family Life Survey has collected two waves of data on more than eight thousand households with a ninety percent rate of recontact between 2002 and 2005. Additionally, the survey appears to be agnostic to relocation decisions of the participating households, in particular, reporting to continue to follow households which relocate to the United States.
I applaud the organizers of this effort for their ambition and hope that the data collected can help to shed light on immigrant entrepreneurship. One of the common criticisms of research in this area is the inability to track previous job activities before immigration occurs and to compare that to later job activities. Tracking people across such long distances and for such a length of time should prove very interesting indeed.
Special thanks to a colleague, Cristina Fernandez, who helped with some research and translation on this post.
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