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Melinda Fremerey / Lukas Hörnig / Sandra Schaffner Externe Veröffentlichung 21. Dezember 2023 Becoming neighbors with refugees and voting for the far-right? The impact of refugee inflows at the small-scale level

We investigate the effect of the refugee inflow between 2014 and 2017 on the electoral support for far-right parties in the 2017 German federal election. Leveraging unique, fine-grained data, we differentiate between the impact of refugee inflow at two distinct geographic scales: the immediate neighborhood (1km x 1km) and the county level.

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Externe Veröffentlichung
Becoming neighbors with refugees and voting for the far-right? The impact of refugee inflows at the small-scale level
Melinda Fremerey / Lukas Hörnig / Sandra Schaffner Externe Veröffentlichung 21. Dezember 2023

Becoming neighbors with refugees and voting for the far-right? The impact of refugee inflows at the small-scale level

Elsevier - Labour Economics

Institut der deutschen Wirtschaft (IW) Institut der deutschen Wirtschaft (IW)

We investigate the effect of the refugee inflow between 2014 and 2017 on the electoral support for far-right parties in the 2017 German federal election. Leveraging unique, fine-grained data, we differentiate between the impact of refugee inflow at two distinct geographic scales: the immediate neighborhood (1km x 1km) and the county level.

To address potential endogeneity concerns, we employ past settlement patterns as instrumental variables. Our results reveal noteworthy variations across geographic scales and regions. In recent decades, far-right parties’ electoral success has increased in many Western European countries. Until 2017, Germany was one of the few countries in Europe that did not have the representation of an extreme right-wing party in its parliament.1 However, in 2017, the Alternative für Deutschland (Alternative for Germany, hereafter AfD) became the first far-right party to enter the German federal parliament since World War II. While immigration is one of several reasons3 for the rise of far-right parties (see, e. g., Lubbers and Scheepers, 2000; Van der Brug et al., 2000; Inglehart and Norris, 2016), how native populations perceive refugees may vary based on their direct interactions with refugees. It is therefore crucial to investigate the influence of refugee inflow at different spatial scales, where the likelihood of interactions varies. The AfD’s entry into the German federal parliament underscores the importance of examining these dynamics. In this paper, we investigate the relationship between refugee inflows and far-right votes in Germany at a highly granular level. Our analysis leverages a unique data set that includes small-scale election results from the 2017 federal election, coupled with socio-economic and demographic characteristics at the granular 1 km × 1 km grid cell level 

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Externe Veröffentlichung
Becoming neighbors with refugees and voting for the far-right? The impact of refugee inflows at the small-scale level
Melinda Fremerey / Lukas Hörnig / Sandra Schaffner Externe Veröffentlichung 21. Dezember 2023

Becoming neighbors with refugees and voting for the far-right? The impact of refugee inflows at the small-scale level

Elsevier - Labour Economics

Institut der deutschen Wirtschaft (IW) Institut der deutschen Wirtschaft (IW)

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