One of the prime objectives of cross-national survey research is to compare concepts across countries or cultures. It is therefore important that these concepts are measured adequately in all of the countries involved in the survey. Moreover; in order that country-scores on items or scales can be compared in a valid way, concepts have to be measured in a sufficiently equivalent way. This paper tries to assess this equivalence by checking whether six indicators dealing with the acceptance of immigrants, measure the same construct or trait in all of twenty countries that are included in the first round of the European Social Survey. This will be done by two methods of testing for the factorial invariance of factor loadings across countries: multi-group structural equation modelling and the proportional odds model. Both methods lead to different conclusions. The reasons and the implication for this are discussed.
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