In the aftermath of the refugee crisis caused by conflicts in the Middle East and an increase in migration to Europe, European nations have witnessed a surge in discrimination targeted at immigrant minorities. To quell these conflicts, some governments have resorted to the adoption of coercive assimilation policies aimed at erasing differences between natives and immigrants. Are these policies the best method for reducing hostilities? Native Bias challenges the premise of such regulations by making the case for a civic integration model, based on shared social ideas defining the concept and practice of citizenship.
Drawing from original surveys, survey experiments, and novel field experiments, Donghyun Danny Choi, Mathias Poertner, and Nicholas Sambanis show that although prejudice against immigrants is often driven by differences in traits such as appearance and religious practice, the suppression of such differences does not constitute the only path to integration. Instead, the authors demonstrate that similarities in ideas and value systems can serve as the foundation for a common identity, based on a shared concept of citizenship, overcoming the perceived social distance between natives and immigrants.
Addressing one of the most pressing challenges of our time, Native Bias offers an original framework for understanding anti-immigrant discrimination and the processes through which it can be overcome.
Awards and Recognition
- Winner of the Best Book Award, Experimental Research Section of the American Political Science Association
Donghyun Danny Choi is assistant professor of political science at Brown University. Mathias Poertner is assistant professor of political science at the London School of Economics and Political Science. Nicholas Sambanis is Presidential Distinguished Professor of Political Science and director of the Identity & Conflict Lab at the University of Pennsylvania.
“Native Bias offers a compelling and hopeful analysis of the challenges facing countries grappling with increasing cultural diversity. Focusing on the integration of Muslims in Germany, a series of clever experiments reveals what it takes for majorities to stop discriminating against minorities. Indispensable reading for anyone interested in immigrant integration and multicultural politics!”—Rafaela M. Dancygier, author of Dilemmas of Inclusion: Muslims in European Politics
“This excellent book addresses one of the most important issues of our time: how to overcome the discrimination of immigrants and, ultimately, how to secure their successful integration into new societies. This is a major contribution not only to the study of immigrant discrimination and integration, but also to intergroup relations more broadly."—Peter Thisted Dinesen, University of Copenhagen
“Setting a new standard for theoretically guided fieldwork, Native Bias presents an array of elegant experiments staged in dozens of cities and involving thousands of bystanders. These unobtrusive studies of discrimination do more than simply document the fact that natives look down on immigrants; they illuminate the conditions under which anti-immigrant discrimination diminishes, underscoring in particular the importance of challenging stereotypes that portray immigrants as hostile or indifferent to the values of the native majority.”—Donald P. Green, Columbia University
“Based on an impressive battery of original field experiments and surveys, this work holds a powerful message: bias and discrimination against Muslim immigrants are widespread and persistent in Europe. Native Bias shows that these shortcomings can be overcome by shared civic norms and identities.”—Christian Joppke, University of Bern
“This is a terrific book—one of the best I’ve read in a long time. Polished, theoretically sophisticated, and logically structured, it brings to bear new evidence and approaches on a critical contemporary topic.”—Daniel N. Posner, University of California, Los Angeles