Partner Preferences and Racial Homophily in Online Dating: A Cross-National Comparison

Gina Potarca, University of Groningen
Melinda Mills, University of Groningen

The aim of this study is to extend existing research on interracial unions by examining racial homophily and exclusion in online dating preferences. We analyze data from 9 countries (Germany, The Netherlands, Austria, Switzerland, Sweden, Italy, Spain, France, and Poland) (N= 100,817), distinguishing between majority- (i.e., European) and minority-status racial group members (i.e., Arabic, African, Asian, and Hispanic). A series of multilevel logistic regression analyses reveal that race and education remain robust predictors of partner choices, while structural factors also play a considerable role. The larger the sizes of their own group, the more likely minority members are to have same-race preferences or to exclude other racial groups. Users living in racially heterogeneous regions have lower levels of racial homophily and exclusion of Europeans, Hispanics or Asians. Regions with strong anti-immigrant attitudes are associated with higher levels of exclusion of all minority racial groups.

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Presented in Session 153: Mate Selection in Sexual and Romantic Relationships