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DATA-SURVEY: Migrant Acceptance Index: A Global Examination of the Relationship Between Interpersonal Contact and Attitudes toward Migrants

John H. Fleming, Neli Esipova, Anita Pugliese, Julie Ray and Rajesh Srinivasan
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John H. Fleming: Gallup, United States
Neli Esipova: The Gallup World Poll, United States
Anita Pugliese: Gallup, United States
Julie Ray: The Gallup World Poll, United States
Rajesh Srinivasan: United States

Border Crossing, 2018, vol. 8, issue 1, 103-132

Abstract: Using independently sampled Gallup World Poll survey data from 140 countries, we explored the relationship between interpersonal contact and attitudes toward migrants from a perspective not typically found in the social psychological literature. We hypothesized that respondents who report personally knowing a migrant living in their home country would be more accepting of migrants generally (using a three-item Migrant Acceptance Index (MAI) score) than respondents who do not know a migrant. Results supported our hypothesis in 134 of the 140 countries suggesting that the strong relationship between interpersonal contact and attitudes toward migrants is near-universal. We also quantified migrant acceptance at the country level, finding a wide spectrum of attitudes toward migrants. Low acceptance countries were located primarily in Eastern and Southeastern Europe and high acceptance countries were located in Northern Europe and sub-Saharan Africa. We discuss these results in the context of interpersonal contact theory (Allport, 1954) and the larger context of global migration.

Keywords: migrant acceptance; attitudes; interpersonal contact; Gallup World Poll (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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