Call Me By Your Name: A Field Experiment on Cultural Assimilation and Ethnic Discrimination in Schools

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See all articles by David Martinez de Lafuente

David Martinez de Lafuente

European University Institute - Economics Department (ECO)

Date Written: March 29, 2019

Abstract

In a field experiment, I test whether cultural assimilation efforts of immigrant families mitigate discriminatory attitudes of schools. I sent fictitious visit requests to more than 2,500 schools located in the region of Madrid (Spain). I find that, controlling for family characteristics, Romanian families who give a Spanish name to their child are 50 percent less discriminated than Romanian families who select a Romanian name for their son. Emails from families whose members have Romanian names are 9 pp less likely to receive a response than emails from Spanish-named families. I do not find evidence of heterogeneous effects across school, neighborhood or municipality characteristics. This suggests that the socioeconomic composition and political preferences of the population do not affect the size of discrimination and returns to assimilation efforts.

Keywords: migration, assimilation, names, discrimination, field experiment, education, identity

JEL Classification: I20, J15, R23

Suggested Citation

Martinez de Lafuente, David, Call Me By Your Name: A Field Experiment on Cultural Assimilation and Ethnic Discrimination in Schools (March 29, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=

David Martinez de Lafuente (Contact Author)

European University Institute - Economics Department (ECO) ( email )

Villa San Paolo
Via della Piazzuola 43
50133 Florence
Italy

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