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Are attitudes determined by location? Differences in perceptions of asylum seekers between residents of two Zagreb neighbourhoods

Abstract : Based on two theoretical approaches—contact theory and threat perception theory—in combination with meaningful encounter and media perspective and using the example of two neighbourhoods in Zagreb, this paper aims to explore several issues related to asylum seekers: (1) the definition and perceptions of asylum seekers expressed by locals; (2) attitudes towards asylum seekers in relation to vicinity to an asylum seeker centre and contact with asylum seekers on the neighbourhood level; and (3) the relationship between attitudes and socio-demographic characteristics of respondents. The survey was conducted in the period of November 2015 to January 2016, using a systematic random sample (N = 299) in two selected neighbourhoods of the City of Zagreb: Dugave and Trnje. Each neighbourhood represents a specific surrounding in relation to the proximity of asylum seekers. In terms of location and contact with the asylum seekers, significant differences were found in all obtained latent dimensions of attitudes towards asylum seekers and attitudes based on locational attributes regarding asylum seeker reception: Dugave residents (located closer to the reception and accommodation centre) expressed, in general, more negative attitudes towards asylum seekers and their reception in Croatia than their counterparts in Trnje. The specific timeframe (the 2015–2016 sequence usually referred to as “European Migration Crisis”) and the spatial context chosen for conducting the survey allows for spatialised and comparative findings. The discussion further develops the perceptive role played by media in a context of highly-mediatised migration, and the nature of contact in shaping more positive or negative attitudes towards refugees and migrants.
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Contributor : Morgane Dujmovic <>
Submitted on : Friday, April 17, 2020 - 7:30:06 PM
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Morgane Dujmović, Margareta Gregurović, Petra Radeljak Kaufmann, Drago Župarić-Iljić. Are attitudes determined by location? Differences in perceptions of asylum seekers between residents of two Zagreb neighbourhoods. Geoforum, Elsevier, 2019, 104, pp.244-258. ⟨10.1016/j.geoforum.2019.05.004⟩. ⟨halshs-02546372⟩



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