What determines religious and racial prejudice in Europe? The effects of religiosity and social trust

Tufan Ekici, Middle East Technical University Northern Cyprus Campus (METU NCC)
Deniz Yucel, William Paterson University

This paper analyzes the effects of different dimensions of religion and social trust on religious and ethnic prejudice in Europe. By including both individual and country-level variables, this paper uses the latest wave (from year 2008) from European Values Survey (EVS) data. The sample is based on 37 European countries that are currently members or potential members of the European Union (EU). Our results suggest that out of different religion measures, religious denomination is a significant predictor of both religious and racial prejudice. Specifically, individuals with no religious affiliation have the highest religious prejudice and Muslims have the highest racial prejudice. In addition, individual level of generalized trust is associated with less religious and racial prejudice. Mean level of generalized trust at the country level is associated with less religious prejudice, whereas it does not have any effect on racial prejudice. Overall these results give some support for social identity theory and intrinsic religious orientation with regards to the effects of religious affiliation and some support for social integration theory with regard to the effects of generalized trust at both individual and country levels.

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Presented in Poster Session 1

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