Foreigners that Steal Jobs?

I’m happy to announce that a tangible product of my SNSF project on attitudes towards foreigners has seen the light: a peer-reviewed working paper on the role of unemployment risk an values in attitudes towards foreigners.

In this paper, we examine attitudes towards foreigners at the individual level, more precisely attitudes towards equal opportunities for foreigners. Reporting that individuals with low levels of education tend to oppose equal opportunities for foreigners will not surprise anyone, but values and beliefs can account for this finding. We show that the opposition by individuals with high levels of education increases with the risk of unemployment.


The blue line is for individuals with primary and lower secondary education; the red line for individuals with upper secondary education; the green line for individuals with tertiary education.

The same pattern can be observed when we look at skills level rather than education. Individual values and beliefs cannot account for the differences related to the risk of unemployment for individuals with tertiary education.

Pecoraro, Marco, and Didier Ruedin. 2013. “A Foreigner Who Doesn’t Steal My Job: The Role of Unemployment Risk and Values in Attitudes towards Foreigners.” FORS Working Paper Series 2013 (5): 1–37.

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