Diversity leads to a drop in trust
The greater the ethnic diversity in Amsterdam neighbourhoods, the lower the sense of well-being of its residents. They feel less at home there, or say they are more concerned about future developments. These are the conclusions of three researchers published in social science magazine Mens & Maatschappij Man and Society.
The three researchers based their conclusions on figures from a number of existing data bases, including a survey among nearly 20,000 Amsterdammers and demographic data on districts. They re-evaluated the data and studied them for significant links.
The research shows that a higher number of non-Western immigrants leads to a reduced sense of security and well-being among residents. A larger number of Western immigrants leads to increased trust in the quality of life and future of the neighbourhood. .
And there are marked differences in the way various groups of non-Western immigrants are being perceived. The researchers found no significant link between the number of Turks or Surinamese in a district and residents’ confidence, whereas such a link did exist where Moroccans and all other non-Western immigrants were concerned.
According to the researchers “Stereotyping and stigmatization can create a strongly negative image of certain groups of immigrants." Scientists have been studying the relation between ethnic diversity and social cohesion in neighbourhoods for quite some time. One of the most famous studies into the subject was written by US political scientist Robert Putnam "E Pluribus Unum: Diversity and Community in the Twenty-first Century.
© Radio Netherlands Worldwide