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SERC/Urban and Spatial Programme Discussion Paper
Immigrant Diversity and Economic Development in Cities: A Critical Review
Thomas Kemeny
November 2013
Paper No' SERCDP0149:
Full Paper (pdf)

JEL Classification: O4; O15; O18; O31; R0; J28; J31

Tags: diversity; immigration; cities; regional economic performance

This paper reviews a growing literature investigating how ‘immigrant’ diversity relates to urban economic performance. As distinct from the labor-supply focus of much of the economics of immigration, this paper reviews work that examines how growing heterogeneity in the composition of the workforce may beneficially or harmfully affect the production of goods, services and ideas, especially in regional economies. Taking stock of the existing literature, the paper argues that the low-hanging fruit in this field has now been picked, and lays out a set of open issues that need to be taken up in future research in order to fulfil the promise of this work.