Het zijn aardige mensen, maar liever niet als buren… veranderingen in sociale distantie tegenover migranten versus moslims en ‘zigeuners’ in Nederland in de periode 1990-2017

M. Lubbers, P. Scheepers

Research output: Contribution to journal/periodicalArticleScientificpeer-review


In this study, we focus on a considered key value of the Netherlands: tolerance towards outgroups. We set out to answer the research questions: (1) what has been the longitudinal trend in social distance towards migrants, Muslims and ‘Gypsies’?; and (2) have there been (changes in) longitudinal differences between specific social categories?, in relation to the theoretical assumptions from contact and conflict theory. Based on Dutch data from the European Values Study, we show that social distance towards migrants, Muslims and ‘Gypsies’ increased in the first decade of the century as compared to the previous decade. In the second decade, social distance towards migrants and Muslims has not changed much; however, social distance towards ‘Gypsies’ has strongly increased further, even though the size of the group hardly changed. We discuss differential longitudinal trends within specific societal groups. The youngest cohort, socialized most strongly with immigrants and Muslims, turns out to be most likely to keep distance towards these groups in recent times ‐ a finding more in line with conflict theory than with contact theory. We end with explanations for the observation that particularly the ‘Gypsies’ have become the most excluded outgroup, not just in the Netherlands, but in the whole of Europe.
Original languageDutch
Pages (from-to)459-481
JournalMens en Maatschappij
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2019


  • different outgroups
  • longitudal trends
  • social distance

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