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Does the education level of refugees affect natives’ attitudes?

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  • Lergetporer, Philipp
  • Piopiunik, Marc
  • Simon, Lisa

Abstract

In recent years, Europe has experienced a large influx of refugees. While natives’ attitudes toward refugees are decisive for the political feasibility of asylum policies, little is known about how these attitudes are shaped by information about refugees’ characteristics. We conducted a survey experiment with a representative sample of more than 4,000 adults in Germany in which we randomly provide information about refugees’ education level. Information provision strongly increases respondents’ beliefs that refugees are well educated. The information also increases labor market competition concerns, decreases fiscal burden concerns, and positively affects general attitudes toward refugees. We perform several robustness analyses in additional experiments with more than 5,000 university students. In sum, we show that correcting misperceptions about refugees’ education level has profound effects on natives’ attitudes.

Suggested Citation

  • Lergetporer, Philipp & Piopiunik, Marc & Simon, Lisa, 2021. "Does the education level of refugees affect natives’ attitudes?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 134(C).
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:eecrev:v:134:y:2021:i:c:s0014292121000635
    DOI: 10.1016/j.euroecorev.2021.103710
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    Cited by:

    1. Cattaneo, Cristina & Grieco, Daniela, 2021. "Turning opposition into support to immigration: The role of narratives," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 190(C), pages 785-801.
    2. Boeri, Tito & Gamalerio, Matteo & Morelli, Massimo & Negri, Margherita, 2023. "Pay-As-They-Get-In: Attitudes Towards Migrants and Pension Systems," IZA Discussion Papers 15989, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    3. Tito Boeri & Matteo Gamalerio & Massimo Morelli & Margherita Negri, 2024. "Pay-as-they-get-in: attitudes toward migrants and pension systems," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 24(1), pages 63-78.
    4. Freundl Vera & Kugler Franziska & Wedel Katharina & Werner Katharina & Woessmann Ludger & Grewenig Elisabeth & Lergetporer Philipp & Schüler Ruth & Wirth Olivia, 2023. "The ifo Education Survey 2014–2021: A New Dataset on Public Preferences for Education Policy in Germany," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 243(6), pages 699-710, December.
    5. Darya Korlyakova, 2022. "Do Pessimistic Expectations About Discrimination Make Minorities Withdraw Their Effort? Causal Evidence," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp731, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute, Prague.
    6. Marino, Maria & Iacono, Roberto & Mollerstrom, Johanna, 2023. "(Mis-)perceptions, information, and political polarization," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 119268, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    7. Jeworrek, Sabrina & Leisen, Bernd Josef & Mertins, Vanessa, 2021. "Gift-exchange in society and the social integration of refugees–Evidence from a survey, a laboratory, and a field experiment," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 192(C), pages 482-499.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Refugees; Information provision; Education; Survey experiment; Labor market;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness
    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior

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