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Cosmopolitan attitudes through transnational social practices?

  • Steffen Mau
  • Jan Mewes
  • Ann Zimmermann
Publishing year: 2008-01-01
Language: English
Pages: 1-24
Publication/Series: Global Networks
Volume: 8
Issue: 1
Document type: Journal article
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell

Abstract english

Within the scope of the debate surrounding globalization, ever increasing attention is being directed to the growth of border-crossing social relations and the emergence of transnational social spaces on the micro-level. In particular, the question of how these border-crossing interrelations influence the attitudes and values of the people involved causes some controversy. Some assume that the increasing trans-nationalization of social relations will foster the development of cosmopolitan attitudes, while others warn that renationalization may also be a result. On the empirical level, the relationship between transnationalization and cosmopolitanism has so far only been addressed with regard to certain groups or specific circumstances. However, we assume that on the general level there is a positive relation between the two syndromes and address this question empirically on the level of the entire German population. On the basis of a representative survey of German citizens carried out in 2006, we find that people with border-crossing experiences and transnational social relations are more likely to adopt cosmopolitan attitudes with respect to foreigners and global governance. The analysis shows that this general interrelation remains stable even when controlling for relevant socio-economic variables.


  • Sociology (excluding Social Work, Social Psychology and Social Anthropology)
  • Cosmopolitanism
  • Germany
  • Global governance
  • Survey research
  • Transnationalism


  • ISSN: 1470-2266
Photo of Jan Mewes by Emma Lord.
E-mail: jan [dot] mewes [at] soc [dot] lu [dot] se

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