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Do integration policies affect immigrants’ adoption of residence country attitudes? Do multicultural policies encourage the retention of more divergent values than assimilationist policies? Do immigrants who live in more liberal countries adopt more liberal attitudes?

Evelyn Ersanilli explores these questions in her recent article for the Journal of Immigrant & Refugee Studies.

Using data gathered from a survey on Turkish immigrants and their descendants in France, Germany and the Netherlands, the author explores how the differences between these three countries may have affected immigrants' attitudes. The countries differ both in terms of their integration policies and in the attitudes of the general population.

The study compared the attitudes of immigrants in the three countries and also looked at the difference between the attitudes of immigrants and that of the majority of the population in their country of residence as measured in the European Value Survey.

The results suggest that the effect of integration policies on immigrants' attitudes is modest, although it appears that the attitudes of people of Turkish immigrant origin are moving towards the average attitude of people in their countries of residence.

Overall, the descendants of Turkish immigrants tend to have more liberal attitudes than the average population in Turkey. Those in the Netherlands for instance are more tolerant of homosexuality than those in France, reflecting the difference in attitude of the general population between these countries. A comparison with data from the European and World Value Surveys indicate that overall, the descendants of Turkish immigrants tend to have more liberal attitudes than the average population in Turkey.

Ersanilli, Evelyn (2012) ‘Model(ling) citizens? Integration Policies and Value Integration of Turkish Immigrants and Their Descendants in Germany, France, and the Netherlands’, Journal of Immigrant & Refugee Studies 10(3), pp 338-358.

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