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Thesis Defense - Riccardo Turati

Riccardo Turati

(UCLouvain, IRES)

will defend his thesis entitled

Migration, Culture and Politics


This thesis investigates the role of international migration on individuals and societies, through its effects on population diversity, on natives' voting preferences and on individual cultural traits and beliefs. The first two chapters explores the effect of immigration-driven diversity on US states and countries economic performance. They show a positive effect on the economy, by increasing the skill and knowledge set of a countries or states. Diversity can enhance economic growth and countries economic complexity when potential complementarities between skills are available. The third and fourth chapters investigate the impact of immigration on Europeans’ voting preferences over the 2007-2016. The education-specific effects are highlighted, both on immigrants and voters sides. The presence of highly educated immigrants has pushed European voters towards less nationalistic and more redistributive parties, while lowly educated immigration has the opposite effect. Moreover, we show that the presence of immigrants only influences lowly educated natives voting behavior. The fifth and sixth chapters shed new light on the relation between culture and international migration. First, MENA emigrants are culturally selected: less religious and more gender-egalitarian individuals are more prone to move towards OECD destination countries. Then, I show that having a reliable connection abroad makes natives culturally different. By moving from their origin countries and interacting with their peers at home, migrants influence cultural traits both in the origin and destination countries.

Jury members :

Prof. Frédéric Docquier (UCLouvain, IRES), supervisor and secretary

Prof. William Parienté (UCLouvain, IRES)

Prof. Giovanni Peri (University of California, Davis)

Prof. Hillel Rapoport (Paris School of Economics)

Prof. Fabio Mariani (UCLouvain, IRES), President

07 January
17:00 - 18:30
1 Place Montesquieu
Ottignies-Louvain-la-Neuve, Wallonie