Locals’ support for asylum seekers’ integration and rights: Exploring a normative model of support for Syrians in Turkey
Dr. Yasin Duman (post-doctoral researcher at the Center for Social and Cultural Psychology at KU Leuven) and Dr. Canan Coşkan (she/they) who is an independent researcher with a scientific affiliation to the Institute for Interdisciplinary Research on Conflict and Violence (IKG) in Bielefeld University
Syrian asylum seekers in Turkey have been trying to adapt to their new life circumstances despite unclear integration and resettlement policies and high levels of discrimination and exclusion. We argue that fostering integration and asylum seekers’ rights requires a bottom-up normative approach that considers members of the receiving society as active agents of these processes. Accordingly, in this study, we investigated the role of normative social context as well as sociopsychological antecedents among citizens of Turkey in facilitating their support for governmental integration policies and Syrian asylum seekers’ rights. A survey study was conducted with 202 residents in three cities, namely Bursa, Mardin, and Hatay, representing different geographical, ethnic, and cultural components in Turkey (i.e., Turkish, Kurdish, Arab, and Kurdish-Arab). We specifically examined how citizens’ life concerns, perceptions of pro-diversity norms in their city, and generalized attitudes toward minorities relate to their support for integration policies and Syrians’ rights. Furthermore, we tested the mediating roles of valuing intergroup contact with Syrians as well as accepting their presence and opposing their assimilation. Serial mediation analyses indicated that generalized positive feelings toward other minority groups predict higher support for integration policies, Syrians’ rights, as well as higher expectations of support for Syrians from fellow citizens, first through valuing contact with Syrians and second, through higher acceptance of Syrians’ stay and lower expectations of assimilation. However, perceptions of pro-diversity norms predicted lower support for integration policies, Syrians’ rights, as well as lower expectations of support for Syrians from fellow citizens, first through devaluing contact with Syrians and second, through lower acceptance of Syrians’ stay and higher expectations of assimilation. These findings suggest that attitudes toward existing minority groups can define the social context and sociopsychological antecedents that would foster Syrians’ adaptation to life by taking on board members of the receiving society. However, they also indicate caution regarding the taken-for-granted role of pro-diversity beliefs among the residents, especially in societies with complex intergroup relations.
Le séminaire aura lieu dans la salle de réunion du CeSCuP ainsi qu’en ligne, via ce lien : https://teams.microsoft.com/l/meetup-join/19%3a34a093c9eea043c0a6dd9b5cd4cdd2a8%40thread.tacv2/1686053671291?context=%7b%22Tid%22%3a%2230a5145e-75bd-4212-bb02-8ff9c0ea4ae9%22%2c%22Oid%22%3a%22e5543702-1628-4726-b5c4-a1eac25bde08%22%7d