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Sense of community and interethnic relations: comparing local communities varying in ethnic heterogeneity



This study investigates the sense of community and interethnic relations in two different metropolitan areas that vary in ethnic heterogeneity. The study was conducted in Milan, Italy using a sample of 318 participants living in different city districts that vary in ethnic heterogeneity (low vs. high). The participants completed a questionnaire that assessed their psychological sense of community, blatant and subtle prejudice, host community acculturation strategies, and some measures of contact (quality, quantity, and type). The results indicate that high ethnic heterogeneity is related to a lower sense of community, higher blatant prejudice, and exclusionism. Residents living in lower ethnic heterogeneity neighborhoods reported closer contact opportunities and lower levels of prejudice. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.