The role of immigrants, emigrants and locals in the historical formation of European knowledge agglomerations

Koch, Philipp ORCID:, Stojkoski, Viktor ORCID: and Hidalgo, César A. ORCID: (2023) The role of immigrants, emigrants and locals in the historical formation of European knowledge agglomerations. Regional Studies . pp. 1-15. DOI

[img] PDF - Temporary Embargo (access restricted until embargo expiry date) 27 May 2025 - Requires a PDF viewer such as GSview, Xpdf or Adobe Acrobat Reader

Official URL:


Did migrants make Paris a mecca for the arts and Vienna a beacon of classical music? Or was their rise a pure consequence of local actors? We use data on more than 22,000 historical individuals born between the years 1000 and 2000 to estimate the contribution of famous immigrants, emigrants and locals to the knowledge specialisations of European regions. We find that the probability that a region develops or keeps specialisation in an activity (based on the birth of famous physicists, painters, etc.) grows with both the presence of immigrants with knowledge about that activity and immigrants with knowledge in related activities. In contrast, we do not find robust evidence that the presence of locals with related knowledge explains entries and/or exits. We address some endogeneity concerns using fixed-effects models considering any location–period–activity-specific factors (e.g., the presence of a new university attracting scientists).

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:migration, knowledge spillovers, relatedness, economic history, economic complexity
JEL classification:N90 - Regional and Urban History: General
O15 - Human Resources, Human Development, Income Distribution, Migration
R11 - Regional Economic Activity: Growth, Development, Environmental Issues, and Changes
Divisions:Corvinus Institute for Advanced Studies (CIAS)
Subjects:Information economy
International relations
Funders:French National Research Agency (ANR), European Research Executive Agency, European Lighthouse of AI for Sustainability
Projects:ANR-19-P3IA-0004, 101086712-LearnData-HORIZON-WIDERA-2022-TALENTS-01, 101120237-HORIZON-CL4-2022-HUMAN-02
ID Code:9766
Deposited By: Ádám Hoffmann
Deposited On:27 Mar 2024 14:04
Last Modified:27 Mar 2024 14:37

Repository Staff Only: item control page