Value incongruence between natives and forced migrants in Europe and Australia


  • Louis Talay University of Sydney
  • David De Coninck KU Leuven



Multiple conservative parties in Europe and Australia have enjoyed a considerable level of electoral success in recent times on the back of their restrictionist asylum agendas. These agendas are often justified by the symbolic threat argument, which asserts that forced migrants hold values that represent a threat to host societies. However, despite the immense consequences of this belief, its empirical validity has rarely been investigated in previous literature. We addressed this problem by comparing the responses of forced migrants (N = 163) and both Australian and European (French, British, Polish and Spanish) natives (N = 816) to the same 10-item value questionnaire using latent profile analysis. Our findings revealed that forced migrant values appear to be at odds with established liberties in France, Spain, the UK and Australia, and to a much lesser extent, Poland. We encourage future researchers to use these discoveries as a basis for developing further knowledge on intergroup value discrepancies to ultimately facilitate peaceful integration of forced migrants in their host countries.