Shushanik Margaryan

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Nicolas Hérault

Title: Does Education Affect Attitudes towards Immigration? Evidence from Germany.

Abstract: The literature to date has established a significant positive correlation between education and pro-immigration attitudes. However, simple OLS estimates may be biased due to omitted variables. To estimate the effect of schooling on immigration attitudes, we use the staggered implementation of a schooling reform across states and over time in West Germany that prolonged compulsory schooling from eight to nine years. Based on data from the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP), our results suggest that an additional year of schooling lowers the probability of being very concerned about immigration to Germany by around six percentage points (20 percent). Furthermore, our findings imply significant spillovers from maternal education to immigration attitudes of her offspring. While we find no evidence for returns to education within a range of labour market outcomes, higher social trust appears to be an important mechanism behind our findings.

Presenter: Shushanik Margaryan, University of Hamburg, Germany

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