Papers from the International Association for Cross-Cultural Psychology Conferences

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The host majority has an important impact on how immigrants adapt to their new land. The focus of the present chapter1 is to understand attitudes of Portuguese young people towards immigration. To achieve this aim, a pilot study was conducted with the ISATIS (International Study of Attitudes Towards Immigration and Settlement) instrument. The sample consisted of 477 Portuguese youngsters attending courses in high school, interviewed in 1999 and in 2006. All participants were of Portuguese origin and 94% were born in Portugal. Their age ranged between 16 and 20 years. An examination of acculturation expectations towards immigration showed that Integration is the option most preferred, while Exclusion is the least preferred. In-between preferences are Segregation and Assimilation. Globally, there was a positive social climate towards immigration and immigrants. However, from 1999 to 2006 those positive attitudes were less strong. Girls revealed more positive attitudes towards immigration and immigrants than boys. Regarding attitudes towards diversity, tolerance is clearly the strongest link. With respect to security, economic security and personal security are the weakest links. The indicators of immigration climate (perceived personal, economic and cultural consequences of diversity and immigration, the tendency to advocate prohibition of immigration and attitude toward 17 ethnocultural groups) are reasonably strong. Immigration climate is more strongly linked to diversity attitudes as compared with security.

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