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Values and Support for Immigration: A Cross-Country Comparison


Davidov, Eldad; Meuleman, Bart; Billiet, Jaak; Schmidt, Peter (2008). Values and Support for Immigration: A Cross-Country Comparison. European Sociological Review (ESR), 24(5):583-599.

Abstract

In this article, we estimate and compare the effects of two value dimensions taken from the theory of basic human values—namely, self-transcendence and conservation—on attitudes toward immigration in 19 countries. Data from the first wave (2002–03) of the European Social Survey (ESS) is utilized for the analyses. This cross-national survey measures basic human values with a new 21-item instrument. Attitudes toward immigration are operationalized using two dimensions: willingness to allow immigrants into the country and rejection of conditions to allow them. Effects of the value dimensions on immigration attitudes are compared across 19 nations using multiple-group multiple-indicators structural equation modelling (MGSEM). We hypothesize that these effects are equal across countries. The critical statistical legitimacy for comparing these effects across countries is discussed in detail, and partial measurement invariance is evidenced. The MGSEM provides strong support for our hypotheses in 17 countries: self-transcendence displays a positive effect on support for immigration, and conservation a negative effect. This result is robust also after accounting for several individual and contextual variables. Effects are found to differ a little across countries. It is shown that clusters of countries with equal effect sizes can be distinguished, and possible explanations for effect size differences are discussed.

In this article, we estimate and compare the effects of two value dimensions taken from the theory of basic human values—namely, self-transcendence and conservation—on attitudes toward immigration in 19 countries. Data from the first wave (2002–03) of the European Social Survey (ESS) is utilized for the analyses. This cross-national survey measures basic human values with a new 21-item instrument. Attitudes toward immigration are operationalized using two dimensions: willingness to allow immigrants into the country and rejection of conditions to allow them. Effects of the value dimensions on immigration attitudes are compared across 19 nations using multiple-group multiple-indicators structural equation modelling (MGSEM). We hypothesize that these effects are equal across countries. The critical statistical legitimacy for comparing these effects across countries is discussed in detail, and partial measurement invariance is evidenced. The MGSEM provides strong support for our hypotheses in 17 countries: self-transcendence displays a positive effect on support for immigration, and conservation a negative effect. This result is robust also after accounting for several individual and contextual variables. Effects are found to differ a little across countries. It is shown that clusters of countries with equal effect sizes can be distinguished, and possible explanations for effect size differences are discussed.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Sociology
Dewey Decimal Classification:300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology
Uncontrolled Keywords:Basic human values; attitudes toward immigration; multi-group structural equation modeling; measurement (metric) invariance; European Social Survey
Language:English
Date:18 March 2008
Deposited On:13 Mar 2010 08:45
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 13:48
Publisher:Oxford University Press
ISSN:0266-7215
Additional Information:This is a pre-copy-editing, author-produced PDF of an article accepted for publication in European Sociological Review following peer review. The definitive publisher-authenticated version European Sociological Review, doi:10.1093/esr/jcn020 is available online at: http://esr.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/abstract/jcn020v1
Publisher DOI:10.1093/esr/jcn020
Related URLs:http://esr.oxfordjournals.org/ (Publisher)
Permanent URL: http://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-28308

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