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Partition, migration, and jute cultivation in India

Fenske, James and Bharadwaj, Prashant (2011): Partition, migration, and jute cultivation in India.

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We show that refugees can play positive roles in receiving economies by looking at the partition of India. We use an instrumental variables (IV) strategy to show that migrants played a major part in India's take-up of jute cultivation. Our estimates suggest that migrants fully explain post-partition jute cultivation. Consistent with migrants bringing jute-specific skills with them, we find that migrants did not depress jute yields, did not increase the cultivation of other crops, and did not lower native wages. Our results are robust to migrant selection into districts with the best markets for jute.

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