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The Gap between Public Preferences and Policies on Immigration: A Comparative Examination of the Effect of Politicization on Policy Congruence

Laura Morales, Jean-Benoit Pilet & Didier Ruedin

Résumé The existence of a gap between public preferences for more
restrictive immigration policies and relatively expansive immigration policy in
Western democracies has received considerable attention. Sometimes, this gap
has been explained by the nature of immigration policies: dominated by elites
while the public remained uninterested. In many countries, however,
immigration has gained considerable salience among the public. There are
competing expectations and accounts relating to whether policy-makers ignore
or follow public demands on immigration. In this article we examine the
potential drivers of variations in the opinion-policy gap on immigration in
seven countries (1995–2010). We analyse the effect of the politicization of
immigration on this opinion-policy gap. The strength of anti-immigrant parties
is unrelated to the opinion-policy gap on immigration. The salience of the issue
and the intensity of the public debate are associated with the opinion-policy
gap, and the combination of negative attitudes with extensive media coverage
seems particularly conducive to policy congruence.
   
Mots-clés
   
Citation Morales, L., Pilet, J. B., & Ruedin, D. (2015). The Gap between Public Preferences and Policies on Immigration: A Comparative Examination of the Effect of Politicization on Policy Congruence. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 0, 1-19.
   
Type Article de périodique (Anglais)
Date de publication 2-2015
Nom du périodique Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies
Volume 0
Pages 1-19
Liée au projet SOM - Support and Opposition to Migration