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Attitudes to Discrimination in Scotland




1 Scoping Study for a National Survey of Scotland's Minority Ethnic Populations, System Three, Scottish Executive Central Research Unit, 2001. http://www.scotland.gov.uk/cru/kd01/red/minethnic-00.asp

2 defined here as those living in one of the four big Scottish cities, those in settlements of more than 10,000 people, and those in settlements of 3-10,000 people which are within a 30 minute drive time of a settlement of 10,000 or more

3 As measured by the new National Statistics Socio-Economic Classification (NS-SEC)

4 Factor analysis (see Appendix Two for details of this method) confirmed that responses to these six items capture an underlying attitude to racial prejudice. The analysis extracted just one main factor, accounting for 36% of the total variance.

5 Note: the size of the tables in this section are too big to show the sample sizes, these can be found in Appendix Two.

6 As measured by a question which offered respondents the following categories: living comfortably on present income, coping on present income, finding it difficult on present income, finding it very difficult on present income.

7 Once again, factor analysis confirmed that there is one significant underlying factor across all seven questions, a factor that accounts for 50% of the variance.

8 Equivalent analyses were not pursued in previous sections because the survey did not ask people about the sexual orientation, while there were too few respondents from minority ethnic groups in our sample to permit separate analyses.

9 It should also be noted that it is less clear that our questions tap a single underlying dimension of discriminatory attitudes. A factor analysis of the five items picked out two dimensions rather than just one, with the questions about primary school teaching and MSPs loading on a separate dimension from the other three questions.

10 We should note, however, that factor analysis of these four questions suggests that our measure of gender stereotyping of primary school teachers may not be part of the same underlying dimension as our other indicators.

11 Note that we did not ask whether people knew someone who was a woman as it could reasonably be assumed that everyone did.

12 There is some debate as to whether people with degrees are genuinely less prejudiced, or whether they are less likely to express their real attitudes in a survey if they feel their views are socially unacceptable. Evans (2002) concludes that the evidence that university graduates are simply masking their real views is fairly weak, not least because many of the questions in these kinds of survey are asked in a self-completion booklet rather than face-to-face with an interviewer. The fact that many of the questions on which graduates appear to be more liberal in their attitudes cannot really be said to have a "socially acceptable" answer in the first place also undermines this suggestion.

13 Of course in saying this we would acknowledge that people's preferences as to the kind of area in which they prefer to live may themselves be the result of their social background and experience. No less than 53% of those with a degree would prefer to live in a mixed area compared with 24% of those with no qualification, while 58% of those aged 18-24 like a mixed area compared with18% of those aged 65 and over.

14 The six categories are: 1) the four cities, 2) other urban, 3) Small accessible towns, 4) Small remote towns, 5) Accessible rural, 6) Remote rural. For more details see Hope, S. et al (2000) Scotland's people: results from the 1999 Scottish Household Survey: Volume 1, Scottish Executive.