Global identification, xenophobia and globalisation: A cross‐national exploration

Gal Ariely
Published Online:
18 Jul 2016
Volume/Issue No:
Volume 52 Issue S1

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This paper explores the ways in which globalisation influences social identity. Combining a psychological social‐identity framework with sociological considerations regarding the contextual impact of globalisation, it tests whether global identification—that is, people's identification as global citizens—constitutes an inclusive category, negatively linked to xenophobic attitudes towards immigrants across countries and whether the actual country level of globalisation moderates the relationship between global identification and xenophobia. Unlike most psychological studies of globalisation, it draws its data from 124 national samples across 86 countries, with 154,760 respondents overall, using three different cross‐national surveys. Study 1 (International Social Survey Program National Identity Module III 2013; N = 39,426, countries = 32) evinces that while global identification is in fact negatively linked to xenophobia, the correlation is moderated by the country level of globalisation, countries marked by higher levels of globalisation exhibiting a stronger negative relation between global identification and xenophobia than those characterised by a lower level of globalisation. Study 2 (European Values Study 2008; N = 53,083, countries = 44) and Study 3 (World Values Survey 6; N = 65,251, countries = 48) replicated these results across other countries employing dissimilar scales for global identification and xenophobia.

© 2016 International Union of Psychological Science