Spain's Loss of Human Capital after the Civil War: Spanish Refugees in Mexico Articles uri icon

publication date

  • March 2022

start page

  • 537

end page

  • 564


  • 4


  • 52

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0022-1953


  • Among the important consequences of non-voluntary migration due to forced exile is the loss of human capital in the country of origin. Quantitative measurement of the human capital represented by the Spanish refugees who migrated to Mexico after the Spanish Civil War is largely missing from the economic-history literature. The use of multivariate regression models, focusing on occupation, height, and foreign-language facility as proxies of human capital, finds that the Spanish Republican refugees to Mexico presented a premium of human capital exceeding that of traditional economic migrants from Spain to Mexico, who were already considered "privileged". The data sources also allow the analysis to isolate the human capital of the exiled women, thereby overcoming the traditional invisibility of women in recorded economic history.


  • History
  • Sociology