Ethnic Heterogeneity Politics of Welfare State in the United States: A Time Series Analysis, 1940–2016

  • Udaya R. WagleEmail author


Welfare state policies in the United States have expanded significantly, with some short-term fluctuations, since the 1940s. This paper examines the politics of ethnic heterogeneity in order to explain these welfare state changes. Results from various time-series regressions of public social transfer expenditures with or without health suggest welfare state-limiting roles of race and immigration, with the growing religious heterogeneity consistently helping to bolster welfare state policies. Albeit more nuanced than groundbreaking, findings help understand the nature of the American welfare state politics driven in part by the way ethnic heterogeneity shapes the evolving public opinion and policy preferences.


Welfare state Ethnic heterogeneity Politics United States Time-series data 



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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Public Affairs and AdministrationWestern Michigan UniversityKalamazooUSA

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