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Preferences for Redistribution among Emigrants from a Welfare State

  • Ilpo Kauppinen


    (Ifo Institute)

  • Panu Poutvaara


    (University of Munich and Ifo Institute)

This paper studies attitudes towards income redistribution in the country of origin among those who stay in a welfare state, and those who emigrate. We find a striking gender difference among Danish emigrants. Majority of men opposes increasing income redistribution, while majority of women supports it. Women are somewhat more positive towards redistribution also in Denmark, but the gender difference is much smaller. We study to what extent differences in attitudes towards redistribution are driven by beliefs about the determinants of individual success, generalized trust, assimilation to the new home country, and self-selection of emigrants to the United States and other destinations. We do not find evidence of assimilation to political values prevalent in the new home country.

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Paper provided by Norface Research Programme on Migration, Department of Economics, University College London in its series Norface Discussion Paper Series with number 2012009.

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Date of creation: Jan 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:nor:wpaper:2012009
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  1. Alberto Alesina & Eliana La Ferrara, 2001. "Preferences for Redistribution in the Land of Opportunities," NBER Working Papers 8267, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Alberto Alesina & George-Marios Angeletos, 2004. "Fairness and Redistribution," Levine's Bibliography 122247000000000283, UCLA Department of Economics.
  3. Lena Edlund & Rohini Pande, 2002. "Why Have Women Become Left-Wing? The Political Gender Gap And The Decline In Marriage," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(3), pages 917-961, August.
  4. Corneo, Giacomo & Gruner, Hans Peter, 2002. "Individual preferences for political redistribution," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(1), pages 83-107, January.
  5. Meltzer, Allan H & Richard, Scott F, 1981. "A Rational Theory of the Size of Government," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(5), pages 914-27, October.
  6. Fong, Christina, 2001. "Social preferences, self-interest, and the demand for redistribution," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 82(2), pages 225-246, November.
  7. Bénabou, Roland & Ok, Efe, 1997. "Social Mobility and the Demand for Redistribution : the POUM Hypothesis," IDEI Working Papers 78, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse, revised 1999.
  8. Alberto F. Alesina & Paola Giuliano, 2009. "Preferences for Redistribution," NBER Working Papers 14825, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Erzo F. P. Luttmer & Monica Singhal, 2011. "Culture, Context, and the Taste for Redistribution," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 3(1), pages 157-79, February.
  10. Borjas, George J, 1987. "Self-Selection and the Earnings of Immigrants," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(4), pages 531-53, September.
  11. Gordon B. Dahl, 2002. "Mobility and the Return to Education: Testing a Roy Model with Multiple Markets," RCER Working Papers 488, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  12. Thomas Piketty, 1994. "Social Mobility and Redistributive Politics," Working papers 94-15, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  13. Charles M. Tiebout, 1956. "A Pure Theory of Local Expenditures," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 64, pages 416.
  14. Daniel Chiquiar & Gordon H. Hanson, 2005. "International Migration, Self-Selection, and the Distribution of Wages: Evidence from Mexico and the United States," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(2), pages 239-281, April.
  15. La Ferrara, Eliana & Alesina, Alberto, 2005. "Preferences for Redistribution in the Land of Opportunities," Scholarly Articles 4552533, Harvard University Department of Economics.
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