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Identifying the Determinants of Attitudes towards Immigrants: A Structural Cross-Country Analysis

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  • Brenner, Jan

    ()
    (RWI)

  • Fertig, Michael

    ()
    (ISG, Cologne)

Abstract

Utilizing subjective data to infer on fundamental issues of individual opinion is associated with severe conceptual and methodological problems. This paper addresses these problems and investigates the attitudes towards immigrants within a cross-country framework. To this end, we utilize data from the first wave of the European Social Survey (ESS) in a structural latent variable model. The determinants of attitudes towards immigrants are estimated by employing different identification restrictions on the model. Our results suggest that educational attainment as well as parental education are the main driving forces behind attitudes formation. Average attitudes across countries further seem to increase with per capita GDP. All our findings are stable across countries and identification strategies.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 2306.

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Length: 36 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp2306

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Keywords: subjective data; identification; minorities;

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References

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  1. Anna Maria Mayda (Georgetown University), 2005. "Who Is Against Immigration? A Cross-Country Investigation of Individual Attitudes towards Immigrants," Working Papers gueconwpa~05-05-10, Georgetown University, Department of Economics.
  2. Kevin H. O'Rourke & R. Sinnott, 2003. "Migration Flows: Political Economy of Migration and the Empirical Challenges," Trinity Economics Papers 20036, Trinity College Dublin, Department of Economics.
  3. Hainmueller, Jens & Hiscox, Michael J., 2007. "Educated Preferences: Explaining Attitudes Toward Immigration in Europe," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 61(02), pages 399-442, April.
  4. Francisco Rivera-Batiz & Myeong-Su Yun & Ira Gang, 2002. "Economic Strain, Ethnic Concentration and Attitudes Towards Foreigners in the European Union," Departmental Working Papers 200214, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.
  5. Borjas, George J & Freeman, Richard B & Katz, Lawrence, 1996. "Searching for the Effect of Immigration on the Labor Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 246-51, May.
  6. Fertig, Michael & Schmidt, Christoph M, 2002. "The Perception of Foreigners and Jews in Germany - A Structural Analysis of a Large Opinion Survey," CEPR Discussion Papers 3222, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Giovanni Facchini & Anna Maria Mayda, 2006. "Individual Attitudes towards Immigrants: Welfare-State Determinants Across Countries," Working Papers gueconwpa~06-06-02, Georgetown University, Department of Economics.
  8. David Card & Christian Dustmann & Ian Preston, 2005. "Understanding attitudes to immigration: The migration and minority module of the first European Social Survey," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 0503, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  9. Zimmermann, Klaus F. (ed.), 2005. "European Migration: What Do We Know?," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199257355, September.
  10. Christian Dustmann & Ian Preston, 2004. "Racial and Economic Factors in Attitudes to Immigration," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 0401, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  11. Dustmann, Christian & Preston, Ian, 2001. "Attitudes to Ethic Minorities, Ethnic Context and Location Decisions," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 111(470), pages 353-73, April.
  12. Fertig, Michael & Schmidt, Christoph M., 2001. "First- and Second-Generation Migrants in Germany - What Do We Know and What Do People Think," IZA Discussion Papers 286, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  13. Joseph Daniels & Marc von der Ruhr, 2005. "God and the Global Economy: Religion and Attitudes Toward Trade and Immigration in the United States," Working Papers and Research 0501, Marquette University, Center for Global and Economic Studies and Department of Economics.
  14. Muthen, Bengt, 1983. "Latent variable structural equation modeling with categorical data," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1-2), pages 43-65.
  15. Christian Dustmann & Ian Preston, 2004. "Is Immigration Good or Bad for the Economy? Analysis of Attitudinal Responses," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 0406, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  16. Bauer, Thomas K. & Lofstrom, Magnus & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2000. "Immigration Policy, Assimilation of Immigrants and Natives' Sentiments towards Immigrants: Evidence from 12 OECD-Countries," IZA Discussion Papers 187, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  17. Kenneth F. Scheve & Matthew J. Slaughter, 2001. "Labor Market Competition And Individual Preferences Over Immigration Policy," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 83(1), pages 133-145, February.
  18. Bengt Muthén, 1984. "A general structural equation model with dichotomous, ordered categorical, and continuous latent variable indicators," Psychometrika, Springer, vol. 49(1), pages 115-132, March.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Aleksynska, Mariya, 2007. "Attitudes Towards Immigrants and Relative Deprivation: The Case of a Middle-Income Country," MPRA Paper 4595, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Jonas Månsson & Josefin Dahlander, 2011. "Social interaction impact on attitudes – Native Swedes’ attitudes towards labour immigrants and guest workers after hurricane Gudrun," Baltic Journal of Economics, Baltic International Centre for Economic Policy Studies, vol. 11(1), pages 51-64, July.
  3. Aleksynska, Mariya, 2011. "Relative deprivation, relative satisfaction, and attitudes towards immigrants: Evidence from Ukraine," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 35(2), pages 189-207, June.
  4. Jan Brenner, 2007. "Parental Impact on Attitude Formation - A Siblings Study on Worries about Immigration," Ruhr Economic Papers 0022, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
  5. Michael Fertig & Christoph Schmidt, 2011. "Attitudes towards foreigners and Jews in Germany: identifying the determinants of xenophobia in a large opinion survey," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 9(1), pages 99-128, March.
  6. Demidova, Olga, 2012. "The European residents' attitude towards immigrants: A comparative analysis based on the ESS data," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 28(4), pages 23-34.

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