This study has a dual purpose: On the one hand, it examines the phenomenon of xenophobia by looking into "otherness", that is the presence of the "other", the "foreigner", in the collective images and concepts of the population, and by systematically describing the attitudes of local populations towards foreigners, especially those from the Balkan countries. On the other hand, it examines the process of development in the region of Macedonia focussing on its economic and social relations with the Balkan and Eastern European countries.
From a methodological viewpoint this was a challenging project as three different levels of empirical observation and investigation had to be combined:
- a large-scale sample survey among the population of Macedonia;
- a quality survey among groups of key-informants, such as teachers, businessmen, and representatives of public and professional organisations, of development companies and of non-governmental organisations;
- an anthropological survey in a Macedonian area with a distinct ethnic and cultural identity and a specific organisation of its everyday life.
This thorough analysis allows for some original and well-founded conclusions on the phenomena of xenophobia, racism and nationalism as they emerge from the complex field of Greek-Balkan relations.