Susceptibility to Threatening News and Opposition to Refugee Resettlement: The Case of Japan

47 Pages Posted: 24 Jul 2018 Last revised: 22 Jun 2019

See all articles by Yusaku Horiuchi

Yusaku Horiuchi

Dartmouth College - Department of Government

Yoshikuni Ono

Tohoku University - School of Law

Date Written: June 21, 2019

Abstract

A prominent explanation for opposition to refugee resettlement is that natives who are directly exposed to and feel threatened by the influx of refugees are more likely to oppose refugee resettlement. Yet, natives' susceptibility to threatening information (or frames)---even in the absence of real threats---has still not been fully investigated. To address this issue, we conducted a survey experiment in Japan using news media frames that depict refugees as threatening. Our results demonstrate that natives, on average, become more strongly opposed to refugee resettlement when they are exposed to such frames, regardless of the physical or psychological proximity to the location of potential threats and refugee resettlement. Further analysis focusing on subgroups, however, indicates that conscious and positive interactions with outgroup members could make natives less responsive to anti-refugee rhetoric and prevailing threatening frames.

Keywords: perceived threat, intergroup relations, framing effect, contact theory, refugees, Japan

JEL Classification: D72, D80, F22, J15, J61

Suggested Citation

Horiuchi, Yusaku and Ono, Yoshikuni, Susceptibility to Threatening News and Opposition to Refugee Resettlement: The Case of Japan (June 21, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3206667 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3206667

Yusaku Horiuchi (Contact Author)

Dartmouth College - Department of Government ( email )

204 Silsby Hall
HB 6108
Hanover, NH 03755
United States

HOME PAGE: http://sites.dartmouth.edu/horiuchi/

Yoshikuni Ono

Tohoku University - School of Law ( email )

HOME PAGE: http://www-personal.umich.edu/~onoy/

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