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  • 1.
    Fairbrother, Malcolm
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology. Institute for Futures Studies, Stockholm, Sweden; Department of Sociology, University of Graz, Austria.
    Johansson Sevä, Ingemar
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Kulin, Joakim
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Political trust and the relationship between climate change beliefs and support for fossil fuel taxes: Evidence from a survey of 23 European countries2019In: Global Environmental Change, ISSN 0959-3780, E-ISSN 1872-9495, Vol. 59, article id 102003Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Taxes on fossil fuels could be a useful policy tool for governments seeking to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. However, such taxes are politically challenging to introduce, as public opinion is usually hostile to them. Prior studies have found that attitudes toward carbon and other environmental taxes reflect not just people's beliefs and concerns about the problems these taxes address, but also their trust in their country's politicians and political system. Using multilevel models fitted to data collected in 2016 on 42,401 individuals in 23 European countries, we show for the first time that these two factors interact. Among Europeans who distrust their country's politicians, political parties, and parliament, or who live in countries with low levels of political trust, being aware and concerned about climate change is at most weakly associated with support for taxes on fossil fuels. Europeans with high political trust, on the other hand, tend to be much more supportive of fossil fuel taxes if they also believe in the reality and dangers of anthropogenic climate change. Cross-nationally, the nations whose populations are most supportive of higher taxes on fossil fuels are not those that are more aware and concerned about climate change; rather, they are those with the highest levels of political trust.

  • 2.
    Fors, Filip
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Kulin, Joakim
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Bringing Affect Back In: Measuring and Comparing Subjective Well-being across Countries2016In: Social Indicators Research, ISSN 0303-8300, E-ISSN 1573-0921, Vol. 127, no 1, p. 323-339Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In recent years, researchers and policymakers have paid increasing attention to cross-country comparisons of subjective well-being. Whereas classical theories of quality of life emphasize the central role of affective well-being (i.e., whether a person feels good or bad), previous comparative studies have focused almost exclusively on life satisfaction (i.e., cognitive evaluations of life). This study brings affect into the comparative study of subjective well-being, constructing a new measurement instrument that captures both the affective and cognitive dimensions of subjective well-being. Using European Social Survey data and multi-group confirmatory factor analysis, we estimate latent country means for the two dimensions and compare country rankings across the two measures. The results reveal important differences in country rankings depending on whether one focuses on affective well-being or life satisfaction. We identify crucial differences among top-ranking countries and, perhaps even more importantly, considerable differences in rankings among more moderately ranking countries. In a second step, we compare and evaluate the single-item measures commonly used in previous research with the results based on our new measures. We conclude by discussing our results in relation to previous studies, and in terms of their possible implications for future research and for policymakers bent on improving national levels of subjective well-being. 

  • 3.
    Johansson Sevä, Ingemar
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Kulin, Joakim
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    A Little More Action, Please: Increasing the Understanding about Citizens’ Lack of Commitment to Protecting the Environment in Different National Contexts2018In: International Journal of Sociology, ISSN 0020-7659, E-ISSN 1557-9336, Vol. 48, no 4, p. 314-339Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This study advances the current understanding of why many citizens do not display a high level of commitment to protecting the environment. We examine cross-national differences in the salience of attitudinal and behavioral profiles distinguished by their comparably low levels of pro-environmental behavior, in both the public and private spheres. Based on theories of postmaterialism and collective action problems, we expect gross domestic product (GDP) per capita and levels of generalized trust to be related to the salience of these attitudinal and behavioral profiles cross-nationally. First, low levels of GDP very likely constrain pro-environmental behavior through decreasing environmental concern, which should increase the probability of citizens displaying an attitudinal and behavioral profile characterized by low levels of both environmental concern and pro-environmental behavior. Second, collective action problems in low-trust countries should also constrain behavior by undermining the propensity of environmentally concerned individuals to act on their concerns, which should increase the probability of citizens displaying a profile characterized by low levels of pro-environmental behavior despite high levels of concern. Using latent class analysis and multilevel modeling, we analyze data from the International Social Survey Programme (2010) and show that the probability of individuals displaying these profiles is clearly linked to GDP and national levels of generalized trust, in the expected manner. In contrast to previous research, we demonstrate that these societal factors are complementary insofar as they relate to fundamentally different individual-level processes underlying pro-environmental behavior.

  • 4.
    Kulin, Joakim
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Public support for redistributive strategies: The impact of personal values and institutional normsManuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
  • 5.
    Kulin, Joakim
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Values and attitudes towards redistribution: The impact of basic human values on support for welfare state redistribution in comparative perspectiveManuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
  • 6.
    Kulin, Joakim
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Values and welfare state attitudes: The interplay between human values, attitudes and redistributive institutions across national contexts2011Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    While there is much research aiming to assess the determinants of welfare state attitudes, there are not many studies focussing on how human values influence attitude formation. This thesis explores the relationship between values and welfare state attitudes across national contexts. In doing so, it focuses on the moderating influence of contextual factors on the values-attitudes link.

    In order to measure values properly, and to study their effects on welfare state attitudes, confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) and multi-group structural equation modelling (MGSEM) is used. These methods enable testing for measurement equivalence across groups, a prerequisite for comparing the effects of human values across countries. The individual-level data used in this thesis comes from the European Social Survey (ESS) between 2002-08.

    The findings show that values can play an important role in welfare state attitude formation, but that the impact of values on attitudes differs considerably across national contexts. Several country-specific contextual factors such as the generosity of redistributive institutions, their framing and their distributive outcomes moderates the values-attitudes link. In more generous welfare states and where redistributive issues are more articulated in the political debate, the impact of, for instance, egalitarian values on redistributive attitudes is comparably strong. Moreover, in countries where lower social classes are more exposed to risks and lack resources to meet these risks, class differences in the values-attitudes link are greater. Finally, the results show that the particular values that underlie welfare state attitudes in Eastern Europe are fundamentally different to those in Western Europe.

    The results imply that the impact of values on welfare state attitudes mainly depends on (i) whether people perceive welfare state institutions to have important consequences for the extent to which their values are attained, and (ii) the presence of competing motives. Hence, it is not necessarily the case that people who support the welfare state do so, for example, due to holding egalitarian values. In contrast to previous research, which has been quite unsuccessful in confirming direct relationships between institutions and attitudes, the results in this thesis suggest that there are indeed clear and consistent macro-micro relationships, but that these are more complex. Rather, it is in the interplay between values, attitudes and institutions that this relationship can be found. 

  • 7.
    Kulin, Joakim
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Eger, Maureen A.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Hjerm, Mikael
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Immigration or Welfare?: The Progressive's Dilemma Revisited2016In: Socius: Sociological Research for a Dynamic World, ISSN 2378-0231, Vol. 2, p. 1-15, article id 2378023116632223Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Previous cross-national research on the link between immigration and the welfare state has focused exclusively on the relationship between the size of a country's foreign-born population and support for redistribution, neglecting that people vary in their responses to immigration. In this article, the authors revisit the progressive's dilemma by testing its theoretical proposition—that immigration and welfare are incompatible—in two novel ways. First, the authors conduct an individual-level analysis that demonstrates that, for most Europeans, supporting both immigration and welfare is unlikely. Second, the authors assess whether country-level immigration is associated with the salience of different immigration-welfare attitudes but find little evidence that immigration measured at the country level produces the most exclusive attitudes. 

  • 8.
    Kulin, Joakim
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Johansson Sevä, Ingemar
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    The Role of Government in Protecting the Environment: Quality of Government and the Translation of Normative Views about Government Responsibility into Spending Preferences2019In: International Journal of Sociology, ISSN 0020-7659, E-ISSN 1557-9336, Vol. 49, no 2, p. 110-129Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    While it is becoming increasingly evident that environmental problems such as climate change and global warming constitute existential threats to human societies, these problems will very likely per- sist and even intensify unless governments enact effective and potentially costly environmental poli- cies. However, government policies and spending ultimately rely on public support, thus underscoring the need to increase present knowledge about the processes underlying citizens' policy attitudes. In this study, we focus on the relationship between citizens' normative views about govern- ment responsibility and their support for government spending on the environment. While people who think that, as a general principle, it ought to be the government's responsibility to protect the environment should be more likely to support increasing government spending on the environment, we argue that this relationship is dependent on the quality of government. Using multilevel analysis and data from the most recent ISSP “Role of Government” module, we show that people who think that it is the government's responsibility to protect the environment are more likely to support increasing government spending on the environment in countries where government institutions are fair, effective, and non-corrupt. This suggests that the role of government in protecting the environment stretches far beyond designing effective environmental policies, since an overall ineffective and corrupt government appears to undermine public support for critical environmental policymaking. 

  • 9.
    Kulin, Joakim
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Meuleman, Bart
    Centre for Sociological Research, University of Leuven.
    The values underlying public welfare state support in Europe: West and East comparedManuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
  • 10.
    Kulin, Joakim
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Seymer, Alexander
    University Salzburg Department of Sociology Rudolfskai 42 5010 Austria.
    What's Driving the Public? A Cross-Country Analysis of Political Attitudes, Human Values and Political Articulation2014In: Sociological research online, ISSN 1360-7804, E-ISSN 1360-7804, Vol. 19, no 1, p. 14-Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This study addresses how political attitudes are shaped across national contexts. It does so by investigating the influence of nation-specific political articulation and framing on the relationship between human values and political attitudes. Based on the literature, two attitude dimensions can be identified. First, the socioeconomic dimension captures the tension between economic equality and equity (rewarding achievements and effort). Second, the sociocultural dimension captures the tension between individual/civil liberties and traditions/conservative norms. Very few comparative studies systematically investigate the influence of a coherent structure of more basic and abstract motivations (values) on political attitudes. We fill this gap by examining the influence of basic human values on the socioeconomic and sociocultural attitude dimensions across national contexts. To investigate the impact of human values and political attitudes, individual-level data from the European Social Survey (ESS 2008) from 2008 are analyzed using multi-group structural equation modeling (MGSEM). Moreover, we also explore political discourse as a key contextual factor at the country level modifying the relationships between values and attitudes. Specifically, we use data from the Comparative Manifesto Project to investigate the moderating influence of political articulation, i.e., the articulation of socioeconomic and sociocultural issues in political party manifestos, on the relationship between values and political attitudes across countries. Results indicate substantial cross-national variation in the link between values and sociopolitical attitudes, and that this variation can be partly explained by the articulation of sociopolitical issues.

  • 11.
    Kulin, Joakim
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Svallfors, Stefan
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Class, values, and attitudes towards redistribution: a European comparison2013In: European Sociological Review, ISSN 0266-7215, E-ISSN 1468-2672, Vol. 29, no 2, p. 155-167Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Using data from the European Social Survey, we analyse the link between basic human values and attitudes towards redistribution, and how that link differs among classes and across countries. We assess whether and why the class-specific impact of self-transcendence and self-enhancement values on attitudes towards redistribution differs across a selection of European countries. The results show that the links between values and attitudes are generally stronger in more materially secure and privileged classes. However, the relative strength of the associations varies substantially across countries. Where inequality is smaller and poverty less prevalent, the link between values and attitudes becomes less class-specific. These findings provide support for our two main interpretations: (a) that welfare policies mitigate the class-specific risks that people are exposed to, which make values more salient and effective among workers; and (b) that the existence of visible and salient redistributive policies works to make clearer the cognitive link between abstract values and support for concrete policies.

  • 12.
    Svallfors, Stefan
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Kulin, Joakim
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Schnabel, Annette
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
    Age, Class, and Attitudes Towards Government Responsibilities2012In: Contested Welfare States : Welfare Attitudes in Europe and Beyond / [ed] Stefan Svallfors, Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2012, p. 158-192Chapter in book (Refereed)
1 - 12 of 12
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