Sophie Hatte



Welcome to my webpage. I am a Post-Doctoral Fellow in Economics at the University of Lausanne. 
My research projects focus on microeconomic questions, in particular in the field of political economy, development, and public economics.
You can download my cv here!

Job Market Paper

"Seeds of Populism: Media Coverage of Violence and Anti-Immigration Politics", with M. Couttenier, M. Thoenig and S. Vlachos    
Abstract: In this paper, we investigate how the media coverage of violence fuels support for anti-immigration political platforms. More specifically, we study how the news coverage of immigrants’ criminality impacted voting patterns in the 2009 referendum on the "Minaret Ban" in Switzerland. Led by the populist party SVP, the campaign was perceived as highly controversial since it played aggressively on the fears of Muslim immigration and linked Islam with terrorism and violence. Our analysis combines detailed information on crime coverage in 12 Swiss newspapers with an exhaustive dataset of violent crime detection that reports nationalities. We document a large distortion in immigrants’ over-criminality in the news during the pre-vote period. In addition to the nationality effect, we also show that proximity between the area where a crime was perpetrated and the area where a newspaper is published is a key driver of news coverage. We then assess the effect of the crime over-propensity of immigrants in the news on the Minaret Ban vote, and tackle the possible endogeneity of the relationship between crime news exposure and anti-immigration vote. Thus, for the sake of causality, our analysis makes use of cross-municipality variations in the readership of newspapers that cover different samples of crimes by chance. We instrument municipality-specific crime news exposure with an aggregation of the share of foreign crimes committed in areas where newspapers have their headquarters, by weighting each newspaper by its market share in the municipality. We find that, should newspapers have reported foreigners’ crime over-propensity at its true value, the “yes” vote would have decreased by 4 percentage points, which is comparable to an increase in the share of highly educated people by 50%. Another interesting counterfactual exercise shows that in the presence of a law forbidding from reporting a crime perpetrator's nationality, the outcome of the referendum would have nearly been reversed at the national level. 


"The Geography of NGO Activism against Multinational Corporations", with P. Koenig  [Paper]     
World Bank Economic Review - Forthcoming - Rang 1 CNRS

"Are environmentally responsible firms less vulnerable when investing abroad? The role of reputation", with R. Bazillier and J. Vauday [Paper]
Journal of Comparative Economics, 2017, vol. 45, p. 520-543 - Rang 1 CNRS

"Mass media effects on non-governmental organizations", with M. Couttenier  [Paper] 
Journal of Development Economics, 2016, vol. 123, p. 57-72 - Rang 1 CNRS

Working Papers and Work in Progress

"Activism under the Influence: Corporate Donation, NGO Campaign and Lobbying"
an early draft is available upon request

"Communication Strategies of Non-Governmental Organizations: Theory and Evidence", with M. Couttenier, P. Fleckinger and M. Glachant
an early draft is available upon request

"Twitter Revolution", with E. Zhuravskaya

Publication in French

"La RSE influence-t-elle le choix de localisation des firmes multinationales ? Le cas de l’environnement‪", with R. Bazillier and J. Vauday  
Revue d'Economie Industrielle, 2014, vol. 148, no. 4, p. 383-409 - Rang 3 CNRS