Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Chambers College of Business and Economics



Committee Chair

Shuichiro Nishioka

Committee Co-Chair

Ronald Balvers

Committee Member

Brian Cushing

Committee Member

Stratford Douglas

Committee Member

Steven Husted.


This dissertation consists of three essays on trade and investment costs and migration. The first paper documents how timeliness induces U.S. parent firms to adjust their trade activities with affiliates located abroad, and the extent to which these adjustments change according to the time sensitivity of the industry in which the multinational enterprise (MNE) operates. The results show that parent firms operating in manufacturing are sensitive to shipping time. Long shipping lags reduce parent firms' import from (export to) affiliates. At the sectoral level, there exists some heterogeneity in MNE's response to time. When MNEs are ranked on a spectrum of time sensitivity, those operating in computers and machinery are shown to be more time sensitive, with coefficients consistently surpassing that of other industries. Those operating in chemicals and metals appear to be less time sensitive. The results suggest that, countries that focus on reducing bottlenecks and building infrastructure that promote efficient and fast movement of goods across borders are not only promoting trade but more subtly, improving their participation in the global production networks in manufacturing.;The second paper presents empirical evidence on the effects of variable and fixed costs of export on the extensive and intensive margins of trade for South vs. North exporters. In particular, we search for the presence of any systematic development related bias, where South exporters face higher market access friction relative to North exporters. At the extensive margin, where we compare the effects of fixed and variable costs on the probability of success in entering export markets, we do not find any significant development related bias. Similarly, at the intensive margin, where we examine the effect of observable variable cost on the export volume of successfully entrants into export markets, we do not find any significant North-South bias.;The last essay examines how foreign-born migrants from developing countries (South) attract foreign direct investment (FDI) from developed countries (North) to their countries' of origin. South migrants have information advantage over North investors concerning the nature of the investment climate in their home countries. Transfer of this knowledge can lower start-up barriers and help match North investors with investment opportunities in the South. Using bilateral migration and FDI data for 18 OECD and 101 developing countries, the empirical evidence suggests that, high stock of South migrants in North is associated with higher FDI flow from North to South. However, the hypothesis that the positive effects of South-North migration on North-South FDI may be stronger when the start-up costs of investment is higher is the South is not strongly supported by the data.