Ethnic Heterogeneity and Knowledge Formation in Europe

10 Pages Posted: 13 Nov 2012

See all articles by Valentina Bosetti

Valentina Bosetti

Bocconi University; CMCC - Euro Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change

Cristina Cattaneo

CMCC - Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici

Elena Verdolini

Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM), CMCC - Euro Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change

Date Written: November 8, 2012

Abstract

Is the interaction of diverse cultures a factor hampering or facilitating the creation of new ideas? In the present article we summarize results of a study investigating the role of ethnic heterogeneity of the labor force in the creation of new knowledge. We employ a panel of 20 European countries and we study the impact of the share of foreigners in the skilled labor force on two measures of innovation, namely the number of patents and the number of citations of scientific publications. The empirical findings indicate that greater ethnic diversity in the skilled professions is associated with greater innovation. What underlined hypotheses may drive such result? First, skilled foreigners contribute to enlarge the size of the skilled labor force, which in turn is responsible for larger innovation. Second, foreigners positively affect natives' productivity. The interaction of diverse culture and problem solving approaches may indeed favor the creation of new ideas.

Keywords: cultural diversity, innovation, skilled migration, knowledge production function, Europe

JEL Classification: F22, J24, O31

Suggested Citation

Bosetti, Valentina and Cattaneo, Cristina and Verdolini, Elena, Ethnic Heterogeneity and Knowledge Formation in Europe (November 8, 2012). Review of Environment, Energy and Economics (Re3), November 2012. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2174383

Valentina Bosetti

Bocconi University

Via Gobbi 5
Milan, 20136
Italy

CMCC - Euro Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change

via Augusto Imperatore, 16
Lecce, I-73100
Italy

Cristina Cattaneo (Contact Author)

CMCC - Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici ( email )

via Augusto Imperatore, 16
Lecce, I-73100
Italy

Elena Verdolini

Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM), CMCC - Euro Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change ( email )

C.so Magenta 63
Milano, 20123
Italy

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