The short and long-term impact of migration on regional innovation and technological diversification: An analysis of US cities during the ages of mass migration (1870-1930)
This project contributes to the literature on migration impact by focusing on the effects of immigration on innovation at city level. The main aim is to quantitatively assess the impact of immigration on the innovation performance and technological diversification of US cities in both the short and long term. I focus on the ‘’age of mass migration’’, when about 30 million people from many different countries migrated to the USA (1870-1930). The hypothesis to be tested is that the arrival of large and diverse communities of migrants allowed US cities tap into new skills, expand their capabilities and in turn develop new technological trajectories. Therefore I posit that immigration can represent an important driver of technological change at city/State level. More in details this project will add to the existing literature by (i) showing the contribution of immigration to both the quality and quantity of innovation; (ii) unveiling the heterogeneous impact of different ethnic communities on technological diversification; (iv) providing comprehensive quantitative evidence on historical immigration and innovation in US cities.