February 11th, 2015
Van Londen studied the resistance of Dutch people against living in ethnically mixed districts. Participants were asked whether and to what extent they would object to living in neighbourhoods with different concentrations of ethnic minorities. The assumption is that native Dutch people are reluctant towards living in ethnically mixed neighbourhoods because they associate this neighbourhoods with a lack of education, resulting in different norms and values.
“Partly, my research confirms this assumption”, Van Londen explained. “When people hear that educated minorities are living in ethnic neighbourhoods, their resistance against living in this district decreases. But, at the same time, 25 percent of the people indicated that also when educated people are living there, they still want to leave such a neighbourhood when more that half of the neighbourhood consists of ethnic minorities.”
Van Londen also investigated the Dutch opinion about policies that support the education of ethnic minorities. She concluded that the resistance against these policies depends on the way the policy is presented. For example, the resistance increases when it is emphasized that the policy comes at the expense of the attention for native Dutch children. Moreover, the resistance against school policies for ethnic children appears to be higher when both the benefits for ethnic children and the disadvantages for native Dutch children are stressed. “This situation closely matches the daily practice, when people often hear multiple, partly contradictory, arguments relating to the same policy issue”, said Van Londen.