Immigration, national identity and political trust in European democracies
journal contributionposted on 15.08.2019, 10:29 by Lauren McLaren
This article argues that discrepancies between individual-level conceptualisations of national identity and official government approaches to national identity, as reflected in policies towards migrants, contribute to reduced levels of political trust in Europe. Public opinion data matched with contextual data measuring immigrant incorporation policies are used to investigate this proposition. The findings indicate that individuals who take a more exclusive approach to national identity but live in political systems that are comparatively more welcoming of immigrant incorporation into the national political system tend to be the least trusting of their political systems, and this is closely followed by those individuals who adopt a more inclusive form of identity but live in countries that are relatively less welcoming in their treatment of immigrants. Where individual identity and immigrant incorporation are both inclusive, trust tends to be relatively high.