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Adjusting to Social Change - A Multi-Level Analysis in Three Cultures

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Final rept. 23 May 2012-22 May 2013

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The last three decades have witnessed considerable interest in the psychology of migration between nations, with a number of factors e.g., personality, age of migrant, national policy of the adopted country seen as contributing to the migration experience. However large-scale internal population movement also presents a major challenge too many societies, although this has been less studied. In this report we document an analysis of two studies in which data was collected from three cultures across three continents with very different histories and present presses on internal migration. This diversity of countries allowed us to examine the impact of different motivations for migration, the relative fit of these migrants within the local communities, and the influence of both regional and national policies towards migration. By incorporating recent developments in the appraisal of change and the theory of social axioms our work provides new understandings of the manner in which societal sub-group and culture interact in the appraisal of internal migration, and the implications of this appraisal for specific behavioral and attitudinal responses. In the first part of our report we present the results of the analysis of quantitative survey data collected from a total of 799 respondents from across three countries China, Georgia and the U.S. We provide new models linking individual and group level characteristics of the migrants with perceived evaluations of the success of their move and consequent outcomes. In the second part of the report we turn to the ways in which reactions of particular official representatives help frame this migration experience. Combining our questionnaire data with in-depth qualitative interviews provides us with unique opportunities to match migrant appraisals with community responses to migration in these three cultural settings, allowing for a more integrated analysis of the impact of internal migration across groups.

Subject Categories:

  • Sociology and Law
  • Psychology

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