DP17294 The effect of exposure to ethnic minorities on ethnic preferences

Author(s): Pascal Achard, Sabina Albrecht, Elena Cettolin, Riccardo Ghidoni, Sigrid Suetens
Publication Date: May 2022
Keyword(s): attitudes toward ethnic diversity, discrimination, Immigration, intergroup contact, panel data, prejudice, Refugees, voting
JEL(s): C23, D91, J15, R23
Programme Areas: Public Economics, Political Economy
Link to this Page: cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=17294

We investigate the effect of exposure to ethnic minorities on the majority's preferences with regard to that group using individual-level panel data from the Netherlands. The data combine ethnic preferences with administrative data on refugee facilities. The study period is marked by a sudden inflow of refugees in some neighborhoods. We find that individuals living close to refugee facilities developed a more positive attitude toward ethnic minorities and became less inclined to support anti-immigration parties. Preferences of individuals living farther away remained unchanged. An investigation of channels suggests that the local effect is due to contact between residents and refugees.