How do individuals' personal experiences with various aspects of political violence affect their attitudes toward hosting conflict refugees? More specifically, how do their personal exposure to violence, their own personal experience of being displaced, and their recent contact with refugees influence these attitudes? To explore answers to these questions, we draw upon a recent survey of 2,400 Lebanese residents where we identify individuals who experienced violence during the Lebanese civil war (1975–90), those forced to flee their homes during that conflict, and those who enjoy recent contact with Syrian immigrant and/or displaced populations. We examine whether these distinct experiences affect respondents' regard for members of the Syrian refugee population. Results demonstrate that historical exposure to violence and experience of displacement have no discernible impact on individual attitudes toward hosting refugees. We find much stronger evidence that attitudes are associated with whether individual respondents have had contact with Syrians in Lebanon; those with such interactions are significantly more likely to support hosting refugees, to consider hiring a refugee, or to allow one of their children to marry a refugee. Our findings suggest exposure to violence by itself does not correlate to positive sentiments toward refugees, especially over time. Further, finding ways to create positive contact between refugees and native populations may be associated with improving attitudes and relations between the two populations.
Stigma plays an important role in several neglected tropical diseases such as leprosy, Buruli ulcer, lymphatic filariasis, onchocerciasis and leishmaniasis. It negatively impacts individuals affected, and often also their families, and even communities. There are different ways to address stigma. One promising intervention is called ‘contact’. The principle is that personal contact between persons affected by a stigmatized condition and the public will demystify incorrect information, break the stereotypes and generate empathy. This in turn is believed to reduce stigma. In this paper the authors report a study that investigated the effect of a contact intervention that aimed to reduce leprosy-related public stigma in Cirebon District, Indonesia. During this intervention 91 so called ‘contact events’ were organized at a local level, for instance, in schools, villages, halls and mosques. The results show that through education, testimonies (direct contact), videos and comics made by people affected by leprosy (in-direct contact) knowledge about leprosy increased and personal attitudes improved substantially.
Increasingly, scientists are reaching out to individuals and entities once considered “users” of scientific knowledge to engage them in the research process due to the increased need for contextualized knowledge. However, these increased interactions make apparent the boundaries that exist between the parties interested in sustainability science. Divergent values and attitudes amongst researchers and between researchers and stakeholders may preclude effective communication and collaboration when individuals screen information due to their perceptions of those who generated the information. The current work contributes to the complexity of environmental communication in the decision making sphere, by considering whether expressions of personal value, such as environmental worldviews, may influence the processing of knowledge and information sharing across interdisciplinary research and researcher–stakeholder boundaries. This work includes a unique opportunity to consider not only empirical data, but interactions and implications within a research community and with the public.
Electoral institutions shape the incentive that elected representatives have to cultivate a personal vote, a geographically-concentrated personal vote in particular. But are electoral institutions able to make representatives do what they would not do otherwise and to make them not do what they otherwise would have done? Using data from the cross-national PARTIREP MP Survey, it is demonstrated that electoral institutions shape elected representatives' local orientation. Local orientation decreases as district magnitude grows - regardless of what representatives think about political representation. But representatives' conceptions of representation do shape their uptake in the legislative arena from their contacts with individual constituents. The effect of the electoral incentive grows stronger as elected representatives think of representation as a bottom-up rather than a top-down process. Adapted from the source document.
"Does parasocial contact impact on inter-group bias? Widening the scope of Contact Theory, this study aims at experimentally examine the impact of parasocial out-group presentation on decisions in a two-person prisoner's dilemma game and social cognitive constructions of the social event. Within a minimal group experiment, 80 university students were randomly assigned to anonymous or video-wise personalization conditions. Participants rather took personal advantage of expected contributions to a commonly shared dilemma situation in anonymous settings than if a member of the out-group was personalized (p<.05). As perceptions of group boundaries, out-group homogeneity, and similarity did not systematically differ across the conditions, implications are discussed." (author's abstract)
'Die Anwendung der Netzwerkanalyse beschränkt sich in der bisherigen Forschungstradition oftmals auf ganz bestimmte Themenbereiche, wie etwa Meinungsbildungs- oder Mobilisierungsprozesse. In der vorliegenden Studie wird ein neuer Anwendungsbereich vorgestellt - die Untersuchung von Intergruppenkontakten. Als Beispiel werden hier die persönlichen Beziehungen zwischen Ost- und Westdeutschen aus netzwerkanalytischer Perspektive betrachtet. Als weitere Besonderheit dieser Netzwerkstudie wird die Möglichkeit der postalischen Erhebung von Netzwerkdaten vorgestellt. Dabei werden methodische Probleme einer solchen Anwendung diskutiert; es wird ein Namensgenerator und ein Fragebogendesign vorgestellt. In einem zweiten Teil werden dann die inhaltlichen Ergebnisse einer netzwerkanalytischen Betrachtung von Intergruppenkontakten am Beispiel der Beziehungen zwischen Ost- und Westdeutschen vorgestellt.' (Autorenreferat)
Cooperation in innovation processes has become crucial for the competitiveness of many firms. This paper focuses on technology-oriented East German firms and analyses details of their cooperation behaviour by studying the relationships between geographic and social proximity, the importance and frequency of cooperative interaction and the attributes of innovation cooperation partners that influence the importance of cooperation. Data is collected in two questionnaires and analysed by regressions. It is found, among other results, that cooperation that is established via personal contacts is, on average, more helpful and important for firms but involves less frequent interaction.
Research on attitudes toward gay people and same-sex marriage finds that individuals who know a gay person in their immediate personal network are not only more likely to view gay people positively but also support same-sex marriage. Here we examine whether this result extends to an individual's stance toward specific ballot measures regarding same-sex marriage across different social and political climates ranging from the conservative South to the liberal Pacific Northwest. Using survey data collected in three states that considered banning or approving same-sex marriage during the 2012 election cycle, we analyze the hypothesis that a personal relationship with a gay person affects an individual's vote choice on a ballot measure with actual policy consequences. In the end, we find mixed results across the three states. Our results suggest the importance of state-level variation in the social climate that may temper the effect of contact. Related Articles Related Media. Adapted from the source document.
We examined the ability of a provider-initiated, minimal-contact intervention to modify the smoking behavior of ambulatory clinic patients. Smokers at two outpatient sites were assigned to one of three groups: provider intervention only (PI); provider intervention plus self-help manual (PI/M); and usual care (control) group (C). The physician message emphasized the patient's personal susceptibility, the physician's concern, and the patient's ability to quit (self-efficacy). The nurse consultation concentrated on benefits and barriers associated with stopping, and on strategies for cessation. Telephone interviews were conducted with the 250 participants within a few days of their clinic visit and again at one and six months. Both PI and PI/M proved to be superior to usual care in motivating attempts to quit at both one-month and six-month follow-ups, and logistic regression analyses indicated that participants receiving the self-help manual in addition to the health provider message were between two and three times more likely to quit smoking during the study period than were participants in either of the other study groups.