An enduring question for the social sciences is whether increasing contact and exposure between in-groups and out-groups enhances prospects for social tolerance and cooperation. Using dictator experiments with ethnic Serbs in post-war Kosovo, our research explores how norms of altruism are impacted by proximity to former rivals. In the aftermath of violence, proximity appears to amplify solidarity with the in-group but also increases empathy toward former adversaries. Based on a March 2011 study of 158 ethnic Serbs from regions across Kosovo with varying degrees of contact and separation from ethnic Albanians, we find that both out-group bridging and in-group bonding norms increase with exposure to the out-group. The inclusion of extended controls and matching for displacement by violence and other forms of victimization helps alleviate concerns about sorting and selection driving our results.
Mironova, Vera and Sam Whitt. 2014. "Ethnicity and Altruism after Violence: The Contact Hypothesis in Kosovo." Journal of Experimental Political Science 1 (October): 170-180. https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2481653