Research / BFI Working PaperMar 31, 2022

The Immigrant Next Door: Long-Term Contact, Generosity, and Prejudice

Leonardo Bursztyn, Thomas Chaney, Tarek A. Hassan, Aakaash Rao

We study how decades-long exposure to individuals of a given foreign descent shapes natives’ attitudes and behavior toward that group. Using individualized donations data from large charitable organizations, we show that long-term exposure to a given foreign ancestry leads to more generous behavior specifically toward that group’s ancestral country. To shed light on mechanisms, we focus on attitudes and behavior toward Arab-Muslims, combining several existing large-scale surveys, cross-county data on implicit prejudice, and a newly-collected national survey. We show that greater long-term exposure: (i) decreases both explicit and implicit prejudice against Arab-Muslims, (ii) reduces support for policies and political candidates hostile toward Arab-Muslims, (iii) leads to more personal contact with Arab-Muslim individuals, and (iv) increases knowledge of Arab-Muslims and Islam in general.

More Research From These Scholars

BFI Working Paper Jun 20, 2018

Misperceived Social Norms: Female Labor Force Participation in Saudi Arabia

Leonardo Bursztyn, Alessandra González, David Yanagizawa-Drott
Topics:  Economic Mobility & Poverty
BFI Working Paper Jul 21, 2020

The Cost of Privacy: Welfare Effects of the Disclosure of COVID-19 Cases

David Argente, Chang-Tai Hsieh, Munseob Lee
Topics:  COVID-19
BFI Working Paper Sep 1, 2020

Misinformation During a Pandemic

Leonardo Bursztyn, Aakaash Rao, Christopher Roth, David Yanagizawa-Drott
Topics:  COVID-19