Longitudinal predictors of intergroup contact with minority groups: Findings from a two-wave national survey

Faulkner, N. (Monash University), Zhao, K. (Monash University), Saeri, A. (Monash University), Smith, L. (Monash University)

Decades of social psychological research indicates that intergroup contact is important for minimising prejudice and maximising social inclusion. However, many individuals seldom or never have contact with minority groups, and there remains limited understanding of what encourages individuals to engage in such contact in naturalistic settings. Here we analysed longitudinal data from a sample of Australian community members (N =600) to identify predictors of the amount of contact that individuals have with several minority groups, including racial minorities, religious minorities, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, and LGBTI people. Consistent with recent recommendations, we implemented a multivariate approach and used a range of variables at the micro, meso, and macro levels to predict the extent to which individuals have contact with minority groups. Results from preregistered analyses (https://osf.io/evzj6) indicate that previous contact, openness to experience, education, income, and personal experiences of everyday discrimination are the most consistent significant predictors of contact with minority groups, despite some inconsistency across minority group types. In contrast, prejudice, social dominance orientation, and right wing authoritarianism did not significantly predict actual contact with most of the minority groups examined, indicating that interventions targeting other variables may be more effective for maximising contact in practice.


Twitter: @nickjfaulkner

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Stereotyping and Intergroup Processes