Migration, migrant integration and support for social spending: The case of Switzerland

Author(s) : Dennis Spies, Alexander Schmidt-Catran

Source : https://doi.org/10.1177/0958928715612170

Abstract:

« An extensive body of scholarship has claimed that the relationship between migration and the welfare state is a potentially troublesome one, because the native population might be concerned about the fiscal, economic and cultural threats this poses. At the same time, studies have argued that ‘migrants differ’, not only in their actual numbers but also in their similarities or differences compared with the native population. Taking these differences into account, we analyse the effect of the integration of migrants for natives’ support for welfare. In detail, we test for the possibility that the integration of migrants might have a direct impact on the economic and cultural difficulties which natives associate with migration and in this way will have an indirect effect on their support for social spending. Our results show that the objective integration of migrants has only limited relevance for the relationship between migration and welfare support and point to the need to focus on subjectively perceived migration- and integration-related attitudes of natives. »

Keywords Economic and cultural threats, integration, migration, Switzerland, welfare chauvinism, welfare spending, welfare support

 

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