Biased Beliefs about Immigration, Economic Concerns, and Information Provision: The Role of Cultural Distance

Last registered on October 01, 2021

Pre-Trial

Trial Information

General Information

Title
Biased Beliefs about Immigration, Economic Concerns, and Information Provision: The Role of Cultural Distance
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0008166
Initial registration date
September 06, 2021
Last updated
October 01, 2021, 4:37 AM EDT

Locations

Region

Primary Investigator

Affiliation
Friedrich Schiller University Jena

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
Friedrich Schiller University Jena

Additional Trial Information

Status
Completed
Start date
2021-09-08
End date
2021-09-24
Secondary IDs
Prior work
This trial is based on or builds upon one or more prior RCTs.
Abstract
We investigate whether individual perceptions of the origin of immigrants are linked to economic concerns about immigration in the host society. In our experiment, participants are randomly assigned to one of three experimental groups: two treatment arms and a passive control group. While respondents in the first treatment arm are only subject to belief elicitation employed as a priming device, respondents in the second treatment arm are exposed to factual information about the overall share of immigrants in their society as well as the share of immigrants stemming from European countries. Conversely, the passive control group is neither exposed to factual information nor the priming device. We aim to analyze whether information provision and/or the priming treatment translate into economic concerns about immigration, immigration policy preferences and preferences for redistribution.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Citation
Bareinz, Patrick and Silke Uebelmesser. 2021. "Biased Beliefs about Immigration, Economic Concerns, and Information Provision: The Role of Cultural Distance." AEA RCT Registry. October 01. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.8166-3.0
Experimental Details

Interventions

Intervention(s)
Participants are randomly assigned to one of three experimental groups: two treatment arms and a passive control group. Specifically, the first treatment consists of a priming device, in which respondents are only subject to belief elicitation about their prior beliefs about the overall share of immigrants as well as the share of immigrants from European countries in Germany, but not exposed to the respective factual information. In contrast, after their prior beliefs have been elicited, respondents in the second treatment arm receive factual information about the overall share of immigrants as well as the share of immigrants stemming from European countries in Germany. Finally, the passive control group is neither exposed to factual information nor the priming device prior to measurement of outcomes. We then aim to examine whether information provision and/or the priming treatment translate into economic concerns about immigration, immigration policy preferences and preferences for redistribution.
Intervention Start Date
2021-09-08
Intervention End Date
2021-09-24

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
Welfare state concerns about immigration
Labor market concerns about immigration
Immigration policy preferences
Preferences for redistribution
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Assessement of advantages and disadvantages of immigration
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
Our experimental design consists of four stages. In the first stage, we elicit respondents' prior beliefs about the overall share of immigrants as well as the share of immigrants stemming from European countries in Germany for those individuals allocated to either treatment arm I or treatment arm II. For the passive control group, belief elicitation is conducted after the measurement of outcomes.

In the second stage, random subsets of respondents are either provided with factual information about the overall share of immigrants and the share of immigrants stemming from European countries in Germany, or exposed to belief elicitation employed as a priming device related to perceived aggregate cultural distance to the immigrant population:
- Treatment arm I: is only exposed to belief elicitation about the overall share of immigrants and the share of immigrants from European countries in Germany, constituting a priming device
- Treatment arm II: receives factual information about the overall share of immigrants (representing the size of the immigrant population) and the share of immigrants from European countries in Germany (representing aggregate cultural distance to the immigrant population), after being exposed to belief elicitation
- Control group (passive): does not receive any information and is only exposed to belief elicitation after the measurement of outcomes

In the third stage, respondents are asked literature-based survey measures of our outcome variables: welfare state and labor market concerns about immigration (i.e. economic concerns about immigration), immigration policy preferences, and preferences for redistribution.

In the fourth stage, we elicit respondents' posterior beliefs about the overall share of immigrants and the share of immigrants from European countries in Germany to evaluate belief updating of individuals.
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
Randomization done by a computer
Randomization Unit
Individual
Was the treatment clustered?
No

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
No clustering
Sample size: planned number of observations
3000 individuals
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
Approximately 1000 individuals for each experimental group
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
Friedrich Schiller University Jena
IRB Approval Date
2021-08-27
IRB Approval Number
N/A
Analysis Plan

Analysis Plan Documents

Immigration_Economic_Concerns_and_Information_PAP_Cultural_Distance.pdf

MD5: 74214aea280e951b2c00c201db72f0a8

SHA1: 9121dd45dc578d4bdd4c4863e6c27775fcf3ec8d

Uploaded At: September 22, 2021

Post-Trial

Post Trial Information

Study Withdrawal

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Intervention

Is the intervention completed?
No
Data Collection Complete
Data Publication

Data Publication

Is public data available?
No

Program Files

Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials

Relevant Paper(s)

Reports & Other Materials