UCL Discovery
UCL home » Library Services » Electronic resources » UCL Discovery

Do Immigrants Move to Welfare? Subnational Evidence from Switzerland

Ferwerda, Jeremy; Marbach, Moritz; Hangartner, Dominik; (2023) Do Immigrants Move to Welfare? Subnational Evidence from Switzerland. American Journal of Political Science 10.1111/ajps.12766. (In press). Green open access

[thumbnail of American J Political Sci - 2023 - Ferwerda - Do Immigrants Move to Welfare  Subnational Evidence from Switzerland.pdf]
Preview
Text
American J Political Sci - 2023 - Ferwerda - Do Immigrants Move to Welfare Subnational Evidence from Switzerland.pdf - Published Version

Download (798kB) | Preview

Abstract

The welfare magnet hypothesis holds that immigrants are likely to relocate to regions with generous welfare benefits. Although this assumption has motivated extensive reforms to immigration policy and social programs, the empirical evidence remains contested. In this study, we assess detailed administrative records from Switzerland covering the full population of social assistance recipients between 2005 and 2015. By leveraging local variations in cash transfers and exogenous shocks to benefit levels, we identify how benefits shape intracountry residential decisions. We find limited evidence that immigrants systematically move to localities with higher benefits. The lack of significant welfare migration within a context characterized by high variance in benefits and low barriers to movement suggests that the prevalence of this phenomenon may be overstated. These findings have important implications in the European setting where subnational governments often possess discretion over welfare and parties frequently mobilize voters around the issue of “benefit tourism.”.

Type: Article
Title: Do Immigrants Move to Welfare? Subnational Evidence from Switzerland
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1111/ajps.12766
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1111/ajps.12766
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © 2023 The Authors. American Journal of Political Science published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of Midwest Political Science Association. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/), which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited and is not used for commercial purposes.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of Political Science
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10178749
Downloads since deposit
9Downloads
Download activity - last month
Download activity - last 12 months
Downloads by country - last 12 months

Archive Staff Only

View Item View Item