In September, we are pleased to welcome social psychologist, Dr Mick O'Connell, Lecturer at the School of Psychology, UCD.
Ireland's recent substantial demographic changes have coincided with - or more likely produced - a rise in anti-minority/immigrant attitudes. One of the key predictors of overt measures of prejudice is education, i.e. where people are more educated they appear less likely to agree with hostile statements towards ethnic minorities or immigrants. Does this mean one can 'solve' problems of inter-group hostility via large doses of liberal education? One must be sceptical since education may simply lead people to redirect their intolerance. Or to hide it with greater conviction as they fear being labelled as politically incorrect. While the views of the well-educated in Ireland and across Europe remain consistently more tolerant that those of the less well-educated even in the face of more highly skilled immigration, the better-educated or more skilled nationals have greater in-built protection against economic rivalry with immigrants.