WMU News

International finance expert opens lecture series

Oct. 8, 2005

KALAMAZOO--A labor economist and leading authority on immigration and international finance will lead off the 2005-06 Werner Sichel Lecture-Seminar Series on Wednesday, Oct. 12, at Western Michigan University.

Dr. Catalina Amuedo-Dorantes is associate professor of economics at San Diego State University and will speak on "Differences in Remittance Patterns Among Latino Immigrants in the United States." All of the lectures are free and open to the public and begin at 3 p.m. in Room 3508 of Knauss Hall.

Amuedo-Dorantes' studies on immigration and international finance have resulted in a distinctive research agenda. Her work on the impact of remittances--repatriated earnings of immigrant workers--on exchange rates and the interplay of immigrants with banking institutions has paved the way for new insights into the impacts of remittances on receiving economies. While on the WMU campus, Amuedo-Dorantes also will deliver a seminar paper titled "International Remittances and their Employment Implications in Receiving Areas" at noon in Room 2302 of Friedmann Hall.

Now in its 42nd year, the lecture series features six nationally known economists, who will address this year's theme, "Immigrants and Their International Money Flows." In recent years, workers' remittances have captured the attention of policymakers and researchers. For a number of developing nations, these inflows of funds are their largest source of foreign exchange earnings, exceeding official aid, direct foreign investment and export earnings. The series will address a myriad of issues relating to these growing international money transfers.

Future programs in the Sichel Lecture-Seminar Series

Nov. 16, "The Power of Home: Remittances to Families and Communities," presented by Dr. Leah Karin VanWey, assistant professor of sociology at Indiana University, Bloomington. VanWey has extensively studied international and internal migration in Thailand, Mexico and Brazil.

Jan. 25, "The New Economics of the Brain Drain," presented by Dr. Oded Stark, professor of economics at the universities of Bonn, Klagenfurt and Vienna and Warsaw University. Stark is a renowned researcher in the field of migration and has made numerous contributions in the fields of labor, development, population and urban and international economics.

Feb. 15, "Remittances in the Pacific," presented by Dr. David McKenzie, an economist in the Development Research Group, Growth and Investment Unit of The World Bank. McKenzie's clever use of econometric techniques to tease out complicated economic relationships has furthered the understanding of household behavior in developing and emerging market economies.

March 22, "Migration and Local Economic Development in Mexico," presented by Dr. Christopher M. Woodruff, associate professor of economics at the University of California-San Diego. Woodruff's research focuses on the challenges faced by small and medium-sized firms in developing and transition economies and has found remittances from Mexicans in the United States play an important role in financing urban Mexican microenterprises.

April 5, "International Migration and Economic Development in Low Income Countries: Lessons from Recent Data," presented by Dr. Robert E.B. Lucas, professor of economics at Boston University. Lucas' wealth of expertise on the determinants of and labor market responses to migration as well as his understanding of income inequality, the brain drain, remittances and policies toward migration has resulted from his studies of Botswana, South Africa, India, Malaysia, Zimbabwe and other countries.

For more information on the series, contact Dr. Susan Pozo, WMU professor of economics, at susan.pozo@wmich.edu or (269) 387-5553.

Media contact: Mark Schwerin, (269) 387-8400, mark.schwerin@wmich.edu

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