Economic Risks within Households and Voting for the Radical Right

14.10.2019 - 12:00 to 13:30
Location : 
A 5,6 Raum A 231
Type of Event : 
AB B-Kolloquium
Prof. Tarik Abou-Chadi
Lecturer affiliation: 
Universität Zürich

The rise of populist radical right parties has disrupted many advanced capitalist democracies on both sides of the Atlantic. A growing literature has investigated how the transformations of post-industrial societies have provided the economic context conditions for their success. We build on this work but argue that existing studies suffer from an individualistic perspective that neglects the household as an essential moderator of economic risk and, thus, crucial site of preference formation. Combining large-scale labor market data from the EU-SILC with comparative survey data from the ESS, we confirm the relationship between economic risk and support for populist radical right parties but demonstrate that this direct effect is strongly conditioned by household risk constellations. Voting for the populist radical right is not only a function of a voter’s own but also their partner’s risk. We provide additional evidence on the extent to which these effects are gendered and on the mechanisms linking household risk and party choice. Our results imply that much of the existing literature on individual risk exposure underestimates the impact on political behavior due to the neglect of multiplier effects within households.