This study advances the current literature investigating the relationship between contextual out-group exposure, inter-group attitudes and the role of inter-group contact. Firstly, it introduces the concept of contact-valence into this relationship; that is, whether contact is experienced positively or negatively. Secondly, it presents a comparative analysis of how processes of out-group exposure and frequency of (valenced) contact affect prejudice across both neighbourhoods and workplaces. Applying path analysis modelling to a nationally-representative sample of white British individuals in England, we demonstrate, across both contexts, that increasing out-group exposure is associated with higher rates of both positively- and negatively-valenced contact. This results in exposure exhibiting both positive and negative indirect associations with prejudice via more frequent inter-group mixing. These countervailing contact-pathways help explain how out-group exposure is associated with inter-group attitudes. In neighbourhoods, increasing numbers of individuals experiencing positive-contact suppress an otherwise negative effect of neighbourhood diversity (driven partly by increasing numbers of individuals reporting negative contact). Across workplaces the effect differs such that increasing numbers of individuals experiencing negative-contact suppress an otherwise positive effect of workplace diversity (driven largely by increasing numbers of individuals experiencing positive contact).

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Laurence , James; Schmid, Katharina; Hewstone , Miles

Ethnic diversity, inter-group attitudes and countervailing pathways of positive and negative inter-group contact: An analysis across workplaces and neighbourhoods

04/2018
This study advances the current literature investigating the relationship between contextual out-group exposure, inter-group attitudes and the role of inter-group contact. Firstly, it introduces the concept of contact-valence into this relationship; that is, whether contact is experienced positively or negatively. Secondly, it presents a comparative analysis of how processes of out-group exposure and frequency of (valenced) contact affect prejudice across both neighbourhoods and workplaces. Applying path analysis modelling to a nationally-representative sample of white British individuals in England, we demonstrate, across both contexts, that increasing out-group exposure is associated with higher rates of both positively- and negatively-valenced contact. This results in exposure exhibiting both positive and negative indirect associations with prejudice via more frequent inter-group mixing. These countervailing contact-pathways help explain how out-group exposure is associated with inter-group attitudes. In neighbourhoods, increasing numbers of individuals experiencing positive-contact suppress an otherwise negative effect of neighbourhood diversity (driven partly by increasing numbers of individuals reporting negative contact). Across workplaces the effect differs such that increasing numbers of individuals experiencing negative-contact suppress an otherwise positive effect of workplace diversity (driven largely by increasing numbers of individuals experiencing positive contact).
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Ethnic diversity, inter-group attitudes and countervailing pathways of positive and negative inter-group contact: An analysis across workplaces and neighbourhoods
Laurence , James; Schmid, Katharina; Hewstone , Miles
Social Indicators Research
Vol. 136, n 2, 04/2018, p. 719 - 749

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