Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung

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Zertifikat "audit berufundfamilie"

Inhaltsbereich: Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung

Redistribution Preferences, Attitudes towards Immigrants, and Ethnic Diversity



"Ethnic diversity plays a crucial role in shaping national economic and social policy. A change in the ethnic composition of a country affects citizens' everyday life and social environment and may challenge present societal values, such as solidarity with and trust in fellow citizens. Based on the European Social Survey, I show that more contact with members of other ethnic groups in daily life is positively related to more open attitudes of natives towards immigrants. More interethnic contact of natives reduces their social distance to immigrants, their perception of immigrants as a threat to society, and their opposition to future immigration. In turn, an open-minded and tolerant attitude promotes mutual trust and solidarity within society. Since attachment to fellow residents and a feeling of fellowship are essential drivers for supporting governmental redistribution measures, I argue that there is no direct, but an indirect relationship between ethnic diversity and natives' support for redistribution, with attitudes towards immigrants and immigration acting as mediators. By applying bivariate recursive probit estimations, I can decompose the predictors' marginal effects on natives' support for redistribution into a direct effect and an indirect effect that works through natives' attitudes towards immigrants. A decomposition method that has so far been relatively unnoticed in the empirical literature. Our results reveal that perception of immigrants as a threat to societal values or country's economy decrease natives' support for redistribution substantially by 15 to 22 percent. The same applies to natives who reject future inflows of immigrants. Natives' desire for social distance to immigrants in private and working life, however, does not affect their demand for redistribution. Thus, the diffuse fear of losing intangible goods triggered by immigration is substantial in the formation of natives' socio-political attitudes. Living in ethnically more diverse neighborhoods, though, increases natives' support for redistribution by 0.4 to 1.5 percent through the promotion of pro-immigrant attitudes and stronger solidarity with fellow residents. These results are robust to IV estimation strategies, which control for reverse causality and the possibility of natives' selective out-migration." (Author's abstract, IAB-Doku) ((en))


Bibliographical information

Coban, Mustafa (2020): Redistribution Preferences, Attitudes towards Immigrants, and Ethnic Diversity. (IAB-Discussion Paper, 23/2020), N├╝rnberg, 58 p.