Public Opinion on Migration in Latin America and the Caribbean

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Jan 2023
This document is part of a series of studies from the Citizen Perception Laboratory on Migration. It explores the trend of public opinion regarding migration over the last 5 years in Latin America and the Caribbean. The paper responds to the growing need to generate information and evidence on this issue in the region, where recent intra-regional flows have highlighted the importance of social cohesion and migration integration in host communities. Through a combination of traditional data sources, such as regional and national public opinion surveys, and non-traditional data sources, like social network analysis and media analysis, the Laboratory provides a comprehensive study of public opinion trends in the region.
The document gives an insight into the issues that most influence the conversation, and generate concern among the native population, while at the same time demonstrating that despite an increase in the xenophobic content of messages on social networks, there is a neutral and sometimes contradictory sentiment towards migration in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Finally, the document concludes that xenophobic attitudes and opinions can be modified. Research and experiments conducted by the laboratory show that scalable different interventions can effectively change opinions and attitudes in host communities. For instance, interventions that provide information or encourage interaction between migrants and locals can be effective at influencing people's opinions on migration.