The Openness-Rights Trade-off in Labour Migration, Claims to Membership, and Justice

Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 22 (2):283-296 (2019)
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This paper looks at a recent challenge to the liberal inclusivist view that everyone on the state’s territory should have a path to citizenship. Economists have argued that giving immigrants an inferior legal status would persuade wealthy countries to admit more, with beneficial consequences for global justice. Whilst this trade-off might seem appealing from the impersonal perspective of the policymaker it generates incoherence from the perpective of the collective of democratic citizens, since it requires them to treat their own unjust attitudes as an objective constraint. The paper also rejects the idea that a voluntary choice to migrate can be taken as consent to an inferior status.



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Chris Bertram
University of Bristol

References found in this work

Rescuing Justice and Equality.G. A. Cohen (ed.) - 2008 - Harvard University Press.
The Problem of Global Justice.Thomas Nagel - 2005 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 33 (2):113-147.
The Ethics of Immigration.Joseph Carens - 2013 - New York: Oxford University Press.

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