Economic Policy 2017, 32:4, 10.1093/epolic/eix012 The originally published version of this article (10.1093/epolic/eix012) did not contain the Panel discussion. This is now available below. OUP apologises for the error. Panel discussion In their comments, Fabian Waldinger recommended using either variables in changes or levels in models that include both types of variables, while Ghazala Azmat suggested to look at non-EU migration and investigate how second and third-generation immigrants voted. Regarding the results on migration, Roberto Galbiati highlighted that Viskanic (2017) finds that a percentage point increase in Polish immigration to the United Kingdom caused an increase in votes in favour of Brexit of about 3 percentage points. He suggested that this part of the paper should be reconsidered in light of alternative studies focusing more on causation than prediction. Similarly, Hans-Werner Sinn highlighted that survey evidence indicates that migration was a major issue in the Brexit vote. As a result, he advised the authors to be particularly careful in interpreting these results. Moritz Schularick wondered about the role of English nationalism in the Brexit vote. He also suggested that instead of focusing on maximizing R-squared, the analysis could be framed as a 0 or 1 question, that is, whether one can predict district-level ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ votes. Gabriel Felbermayr questioned the reliability of exploiting regional variation when analyzing the effects of trade or immigration on voting behaviour because of generalized wage effects that diffuse geographically in the entire country. He also suggested exploiting the 1975 referendum in the United Kingdom to analyse what happened between 1975 and 2016 using a similar exercise or in a difference-in-differences setting. Following one of the comments by Vasso Ioannidou during her discussion, Ugo Panizza argued that it would be useful to analyse in more detail the sub-sets of the population that were more susceptible to false claims during the campaign. Related to this comment, Kevin O’Rourke observed that one of the main issues with Brexit is that unlike other countries, there was no validation of statements made during the campaign. Andrea Ichino asked if there is a way to validate the paper’s predictions externally, for example, predict the vote in France. He also noted that the authors should better control for the role of the media during the campaign. In response to comments and questions, Dennis Novy first acknowledged that many variables are strongly correlated, but reinforced that the key variable that dominates in the regressions are individuals’ qualifications. He also highlighted that it is not fair to state that the polls were incorrect in this particular case because the result was unpredictable in the run-up to the referendum. He also said that the analysis can indeed be done separately for levels and changes, and recognized that the results on migration should be discussed more carefully. Finally, Dennis Novy clarified that while important, there are no reliable measures to capture the role of English nationalism. REFERENCE Viskanic M. ( 2017). ‘Fear and loathing on the campaign trail: did immigration cause Brexit?’ Working Paper. © CEPR, CESifo, Sciences Po, 2017.
Economic Policy – Oxford University Press
Published: Jan 1, 2018
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