Immigrants as threat and opportunity: The Australian experience

Morgana Lizzio-Wilson, Susilo Wibisono, Winnifred R. Louis

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


This chapter explores the roots of Australians' anti-immigration attitudes, and proposes that such attitudes can be explained by a number of individual differences, as well as group and social identity processes that lead Australians to view migrants as a source of threat to the Australian way of life. It then explores how certain group and identity processes can be leveraged to reduce threat perceptions and enhance receptivity to immigration. The chapter begins with a brief historical overview of immigration in Australia, focusing on Australia's selective embrace of migrants and the rise of racist, anti-immigration policies and social movements over the last 30 years. It then segues into a review of research on immigration attitudes in Australia and concludes with an overview of three prejudice reduction strategies that have been shown to improve attitudes toward migrants (and racial outgroups more generally) among White Australians.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationContemporary immigration
Subtitle of host publicationPsychological perspectives to address challenges and inform solutions.
EditorsFathali M. Moghaddam, Margaret J. Hendricks
Place of PublicationWashington, DC
PublisherAmerican Psychological Association Inc.
Number of pages20
ISBN (Electronic)9781433840265
ISBN (Print)9781433836275
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • anti-immigration attitudes
  • Australia
  • immigration
  • Political Barriers
  • threat perceptions
  • receptivity
  • migrants


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