Ethnic hate crime in Australia: Diversity and change in the neighbourhood context

Kathryn Benier, Rebecca Wickes, Angela Higginson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


Ecological theories of racially or ethnically motivated hate crime are largely derived from the United States, where racial segregation is highly pronounced. The extent to which these theories explain hate crime in more ethnically integrated countries is presently unclear. We focus on the neighbourhood characteristics influencing self-reported hate crime for 4,396 residents in a city experiencing growing ethnic diversity. We find that the neighbourhood antecedents of hate crime in the Australian context differ from those seen in the United States. While residents speaking a language other than English is a powerful predictor of incidents, neither residential mobility nor increases in in-migration are associated with hate victimization, and neighbourhood place attachment decreases the likelihood of victimization. Our findings suggest that ecological theories of hate crime derived from the United States may be limited in their applicability in multi-ethnic settings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)479-496
Number of pages18
JournalThe British Journal of Criminology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • bias crime
  • defended neighbourhood
  • diversity
  • ethnicity
  • Hate crime
  • targeted crime

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