The relevance of contextual generalised trust in explaining individual immigration sentiments

Josefina Sipinen, Peter Söderlund, Bäck Maria

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

This paper measures both individual- and contextual effects of generalised trust on Europeans’ attitudes towards immigration. Our data come from round 7 of the European Social Survey (ESS) with which it is possible to measure generalised trust also at the subnational level (NUTS levels). This enables us to capture evident variation in generalised trust within countries. Our main contribution is to test whether two persons who have the same level of generalised trust, but who live in regions differing in mean generalised trust, have different opinions about immigrants. Our results show, first of all, that people with high generalised trust have positive immigration attitudes. Second, living in a high-trusting region does not seem to generally encourage even more positive attitudes towards immigrants. Third, there is, however, another type of contextual effect that moderates the relationship between individual-level generalised trust and pro-immigration attitudes. A high-trusting regional context encourages high-trusting people to develop even more positive attitudes towards immigrants.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)456-479
Number of pages23
JournalEuropean Societies
Volume22
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 7 Aug 2020
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

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