Unity in Diversity? How Intergroup Contact Can Foster Nation Building

85 Pages Posted: 23 Oct 2017 Last revised: 18 Mar 2019

See all articles by Samuel Bazzi

Samuel Bazzi

Boston University - Department of Economics

Arya Gaduh

University of Arkansas

Alexander D. Rothenberg

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

Maisy Wong

The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania

Date Written: October 2017

Abstract

We use a population resettlement program in Indonesia to identify long-run effects of intergroup contact on national integration. In the 1980s, the government relocated two million ethnically diverse migrants into hundreds of new communities. We find greater integration in fractionalized communities with many small groups, as measured by national language use at home, intermarriage, and children's name choices. However, in polarized communities with a few large groups, ethnic attachment increases and integration declines. Residential segregation dampens these effects. Social capital, public goods, and ethnic conflict follow similar patterns. Overall, our findings highlight the importance of localized contact in shaping identity.

Keywords: Cultural change, diversity, identity, Language, migration, Nation building

JEL Classification: D02, D71, J15, O15, R23

Suggested Citation

Bazzi, Samuel and Gaduh, Arya and Rothenberg, Alexander D. and Wong, Maisy, Unity in Diversity? How Intergroup Contact Can Foster Nation Building (October 2017). CEPR Discussion Paper No. DP12377, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3057291

Samuel Bazzi (Contact Author)

Boston University - Department of Economics ( email )

270 Bay State Road
Boston, MA 02215
United States

Arya Gaduh

University of Arkansas ( email )

402 Business Building
Fayetteville, AR 72701
United States
1-479-575-8776 (Phone)

Alexander D. Rothenberg

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System ( email )

20th and C Streets NW
Washington, DC 20551
United States

Maisy Wong

The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania ( email )

3641 Locust Walk
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6365
United States
215-746-3470 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://maisy.wharton.upenn.edu/

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
0
Abstract Views
436
PlumX Metrics