What's driving the public? Political attitudes, human values and political articulation


Our paper addresses the issue of how the political culture influences the relationship between human values and political attitudes across national contexts. Political attitudes can be defined as evaluations and preferences regarding social, economic and cultural issues that either are, or are subject to debate as to whether they should be, regulated by politics. Based on the literature, two attitude dimensions can be identified. First, the socio-economic dimension encompasses the tension between economic equality and equity (rewarding achievements and effort). Second, the socio-cultural dimension focuses on the tension between individual and civil liberties vs. following traditions and conservative norms. Very few comparative studies systematically investigate the influence of a coherent structure of more basic and abstract motivations on attitudes. We aim to fill this gap by studying the influence of basic human values on the socio-economic and socio-cultural attitude dimensions across national contexts. Moreover, the study also explores the political culture as a key contextual factor (at the country-level) modifying the individual-level relationships between values and attitudes. More specifically, we investigate the moderating influence of political articulation, i.e., the articulation of socio-economic and socio-cultural issues in the political debate. The study utilizes data from the European Social Survey (ESS) from the year 2008, and employ multi-group structural equation modeling (MGSEM) in order to investigate the impact of human values and political attitudes across European countries, and Manifesto data to study how the political culture moderates this relationship across national contexts.

Jul 16, 2013
Ljubljana, Slovenia
Social Scientist and Data Analyst

My research interests include quantitative and comparative social science, statistical modeling and programmable matter.