Is fear of immigration fueled by facts or ignorance?

Are the views of anti-immigrant people shaped by reality, or are they merely opposed to something they don’t know anything about? I attempt to answer this question in this post on an international level. I look at how attitudes towards immigration vary by country.

If it is the countries with few immigrants that are against immigration, then we could reasonably conclude that fear of immigration is driven by speculation and ignorance. As people in low immigration countries have very little experience with immigration. If, however, it is countries with many immigrants that are more against immigration, then we could conclude that the fear of immigration is more evidence- or experience-based.

Continue reading


How is cultural assimilation affected by community leaders?

Why do certain immigrant groups tend to assimilate, while others don’t? This post argues that immigrant institutions (such as religious communities or foreign language media) have an important role in determining the degree of assimilation.

Moreover, altruistic institutions (those who care about their group’s identity and wealth) and extractive institutions (those who only care about the group’s identity to the extent that it increases their own revenue) may have different effects.

Continue reading