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Immigration and Preferences for Redistribution in Europe

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  • Alberto Alesina
  • Elie Murard
  • Hillel Rapoport

Abstract

We examine the relationship between immigration and attitudes toward redistribution using a newly assembled data set of immigrant stocks for 140 regions of 16 Western European countries. Exploiting within-country variations in the share of immigrants at the regional level, we find that native respondents display lower support for redistribution when the share of immigrants in their residence region is higher. This negative association is driven by regions of countries with relatively large Welfare States and by respondents at the center or at the right of the political spectrum. The effects are also stronger when immigrants originate from Middle-Eastern countries, are less skilled than natives, and experience more residential segregation. These results are unlikely to be driven by immigrants' endogenous location choices.

Suggested Citation

  • Alberto Alesina & Elie Murard & Hillel Rapoport, 2019. "Immigration and Preferences for Redistribution in Europe," NBER Working Papers 25562, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:25562
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D6 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
    • P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism

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