Does Immigration Reduce the Support for Welfare Spending? : a Cautionary Tale on Spatial Panel Data Analysis
2019-08, Auspurg, Katrin, Brüderl, Josef, Wöhler, Thomas
There has been a long-lasting debate over whether increasing ethnic diversity undermines support for social welfare, and whether this conflict thesis applies not only to the United States, but also to European welfare states. In their 2016 ASR article, Schmidt-Catran and Spies analyzed a panel (1994 to 2010) of regional units in Germany and concluded that this thesis also holds for Germany. We argue that their analysis suffers from misspecification: their model specification assumes parallel time trends in welfare support in all German regions. However, time trends strongly differed between Western and Eastern Germany after reunification. In the 1990s, Eastern Germans’ attitudes adapted to a less interventionist Western welfare system (“Goodbye Lenin effect”). When allowing for heterogeneous time trends, we find no evidence that increasing proportions of foreigners undermine welfare support, or that this association is moderated by economic hardship (high unemployment rates). We conclude with some general suggestions regarding the conceptualization of context effects in spatial analyses.
2014, Hinz, Thomas, Wöhler, Thomas, Freitag, Markus
How does social integration take place away from disadvantaged areas with social problems? A German-Swiss study is examining how migrants and locals in small and medium-sized towns live together.
Emotional Integration across Immigrant Generations in Baden‐Württemberg, Germany : the Role of Discrimination
2018-06, Hochman, Oshrat, Stein, Anna, Lewin-Epstein, Noah, Wöhler, Thomas
Immigrants’ integration is a multi‐faceted process, involving structural, cultural, social, and emotional dimensions. This study focuses on the emotional dimension of integration, investigating immigrants’ emotional attachments to their national origin and their host country. Specifically, we ask what role perceived discrimination plays in shaping identification preferences among immigrants and immigrant descendants in Germany. The contribution of this study is twofold: First, we present results for three generations of post‐WWII labour migrants of Turkish and Italian descent. Second, we estimate the consequences of perceived individual discrimination for national and ethnic identification separately. The findings indicate that while discrimination is not related to ethnic identification, it is negatively correlated with national identification. Regarding future challenges, we believe that our findings suggest that the German society can come closer to achieving integration of migrants by reducing perceptions of rejection by the immigrant population, or better yet, fighting off discrimination against immigrant minorities.
Auf gute Nachbarschaft
2013, Hinz, Thomas, Wöhler, Thomas, Freitag, Markus
Soziale Integration einmal anders: Wie gelingt die Eingliederung von Migranten fern der problembeladenen sozialen Brennpunkte? Eine deutsch-schweizerische Studie untersucht das Miteinander von Zuwanderern und Einheimischen in kleineren und mittleren Städten.
No children in later life, but more and better friends? : Substitution mechanisms in the personal and support networks of parents and the childless in Germany
2016, Schnettler, Sebastian, Wöhler, Thomas
Given increases in childlessness, we ask if and how the permanently childless substitute for adult children in their later-life support networks. Previous research finds that they are disadvantaged on several network and support indicators. Yet, the role of different substitution mechanisms remains unclear. We examine two substitution mechanisms: substitution through adjustments of network size/composition and through higher efficiency of personal ties. Data are from the German Ageing Survey (childless: N = 1,886; parents without/with residentially proximate children: N = 4,437/8,337). Our descriptive and regression results on network size/composition and the number of potential informational and emotional supporters show that both mechanisms play a role: the childless have more friends and extended kin, and they are more likely to consider them as potential supporters, than parents. Across cohorts or age groups, the relative effect size of network size/composition versus tie efficiency changes. Parents with no children nearby constitute a mixed type that shows similarities to the childless on some indicators of social support and to parents with at least one child nearby on other indicators. Our findings provide a foundation for better predicting how current demographic trends affect future scenarios of social support in later life and for identifying the future need for formal care services. Thus, they are relevant for social scientists and policy makers alike.