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Immigration and nationalism: The importance of identity

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  • Russo, Francesco Flaviano

Abstract

I study how immigration affected electoral outcomes in Italy accounting for changes in the immigrants identity, measured as their cultural distance from the natives. I consider three metrics of cultural distance based on language, on religion and on genetic traits which are related to the vertical transmission of values and norms across generations. I find that the increased cultural distance between immigrants and natives determined more votes for nationalist, anti-immigration, parties, although this is not the result of increased religious distance. The immigrant share does not explain electoral outcomes once either of the three distance metrics is accounted for.

Suggested Citation

  • Russo, Francesco Flaviano, 2021. "Immigration and nationalism: The importance of identity," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 137(C).
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:eecrev:v:137:y:2021:i:c:s0014292121001343
    DOI: 10.1016/j.euroecorev.2021.103781
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Elections; Culture; Language; Religion;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers

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