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  • (2024): Social mobility in Germany Journal of Public Economics. Elsevier. 2024, 232, 105074. ISSN 0047-2727. eISSN 1879-2316. Available under: doi: 10.1016/j.jpubeco.2024.105074

    Social mobility in Germany

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    We characterize intergenerational mobility in Germany using census data on educational attainment and parental income for 526,000 children. Motivated by Germany’s tracking system in secondary education, our measure of opportunity is the A-Level degree, a requirement for access to university. A 10 percentile increase in parental income rank is associated with a 5.2 percentage point increase in the A-Level share. This gradient remained unchanged for the birth cohorts 1980–1996, despite a large-scale expansion of upper secondary education. At the regional level, there exists substantial variation in mobility estimates. Local characteristics, rather than sorting patterns, account for most of these differences.

  •   31.03.26  
    (2024): The politics of redistribution and sovereign default Journal of International Economics. Elsevier. 2024, 148, 103876. ISSN 0022-1996. eISSN 1873-0353. Available under: doi: 10.1016/j.jinteco.2023.103876

    The politics of redistribution and sovereign default

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    This paper studies how distributional and electoral concerns shape sovereign default incentives within a quantitative model of sovereign debt with heterogeneous agents and non-linear income taxation. The small open economy is characterized by a two-party system in which the left-wing party has a larger preference for redistribution than the right-wing party. Political turnover is the endogenous outcome of the electoral process. Fiscal policy faces a tradeoff: On the one hand, the government has incentives to finance its spending via external debt to avoid distortionary income taxation. On the other hand, the accumulation of external debt raises the cost of borrowing. Quantitative findings suggest that the left-wing party implements a more progressive income tax, is more prone to default, and has a lower electoral support than the right-wing party due to worse borrowing conditions and the distortionary effects of income taxation. In equilibrium, electoral uncertainty raises sovereign default risk.

  • (2024): Highly skilled and highly skeptical? : How education and origin shape newcomers’ relationship with their new home Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies. Taylor & Francis. ISSN 1369-183X. eISSN 1469-9451. Available under: doi: 10.1080/1369183X.2024.2315356

    Project : Aktuelle Zuzugsprozesse und frühe Integrationsverläufe in Deutschland

    Highly skilled and highly skeptical? : How education and origin shape newcomers’ relationship with their new home

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    This article explores how level of education and region of origin (EU versus non-EU) shape newcomers’ perceptions of being welcome and treated fairly upon arrival, as well as their feelings of closeness and belonging to majority members and their long-term commitment to their new country of residence. Our results show that the impact of these factors – education and EU background – varies between these dimensions in shaping individuals’ attitudes and feelings about their new home. Feelings of being welcome and treated fairly do not differ much between origin groups per se, but they do differ between highly skilled and less-skilled migrants, although in a paradoxical way. Skilled third-country nationals are more skeptical than individuals with lower levels of education, and they are also more likely to feel marginalized. As regards the other dimensions, origin clearly trumps education. Although EU migrants are not particularly skeptical about Germany, they feel less close to it and more hesitant to make a long-term commitment to the country. Our analysis shows that skilled migrants do not relate in a consistent or homogeneous way to their destination country.

  • (2024): Endorsement of Wage Discrimination against Immigrants : Results from a Multifactorial Survey Experiment in Israeli Society Research in Social Stratification and Mobility. Elsevier. 2024, 89, 100891. ISSN 0276-5624. eISSN 1878-5654. Available under: doi: 10.1016/j.rssm.2024.100891

    Endorsement of Wage Discrimination against Immigrants : Results from a Multifactorial Survey Experiment in Israeli Society

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    In the present research we examine, first, the extent to which the Israeli public endorse wage-gaps between immigrants and comparable non-immigrant workers (employed in. identical low-wage jobs), and second, whether the endorsement of wage discrimination against immigrants is associated with immigrants’ characteristics. Data for the analysis were obtained from a representative sample of the Jewish population in Israel (N=600). We implemented a multifactorial survey experiment design including immigrants’ characteristics such as continent of origin, education, religion, and reason for migration. The experimental setup contained 252 vignettes. Vignette decks were randomly assigned to the respondents for evaluation of the fairness of the wage-gaps between immigrants and comparable non-immigrant workers. Analysis of the data leads to a twofold conclusion. First, justification of wage discrimination against immigrants is widespread. Second, justification of wage discrimination is influenced by immigrants’ characteristics, being most pronounced (even extreme) in the case of clearly defined “outgroup” populations (Muslims and Christians, asylum seekers and labor migrants) and least pronounced in the case of immigrants belonging to the dominant “in-group” population (Jews and repatriates). In addition, endorsement of discrimination tends to increase with respondents’ levels of prejudice, fear of cultural change, and economic threat. The findings and their meaning are discussed in light of theories on economic discrimination.

  • (2024): ECMI Minorities Blog: Indigenous Inequalities in Egalitarian Societies : The Case of the Sámi People in Norway and Sweden ECMI Minorities Blog. Flensburg: European Centre for Minority Issues (ECMI). Available under: doi: 10.53779/SBPL3716

    Project : “Ethnic policies” – remedy for between-group inequalities?

    ECMI Minorities Blog: Indigenous Inequalities in Egalitarian Societies : The Case of the Sámi People in Norway and Sweden

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    Many Indigenous peoples live in firmly unequal societies and face substantial material disparities towards the ethnic majority populations. Yet, inequalities between ethnic groups are usually multidimensional and go beyond material status. But are they also present when economic inequality is absent? That is, what kind of inequalities do Indigenous peoples face in societies conventionally considered egalitarian? This blog post reports on new research about the situation of the Sámi people in Norway and Sweden. It indeed supports the proposition that the Sámi are on a material par with their non-Indigenous compatriots. Nonetheless, they are more likely to experience discrimination, and these experiences are strongly linked to how proficient Sámi are in their Indigenous languages and how frequently they use them. This shows that the Sámi face inequalities especially in the dimension of cultural status. Finally, the post points out potential further inequalities in the case of the Sámi that research has yet to address.

  • (2024): The distributive politics of the green transition : a conjoint experiment on EU climate change mitigation policy Journal of European Public Policy. Taylor & Francis. ISSN 1350-1763. eISSN 1466-4429. Available under: doi: 10.1080/13501763.2024.2304609

    The distributive politics of the green transition : a conjoint experiment on EU climate change mitigation policy

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    In the fight against climate change, the European Union has developed a new growth strategy to transform Europe into the first climate-neutral continent by 2050. To support EU member states in their transition towards greener economies, climate change mitigation policies are being implemented at the EU-level. However, such policies can be designed in different ways, and gaining citizens’ support is crucial for the political feasibility of the European green transition. Drawing on data from an original conjoint experiment conducted in Germany (N = 5,796), this article investigates how policy design shapes public support for EU climate change mitigation. To this end, the study theoretically and empirically distinguishes four policy dimensions that address the distributive politics of the European green transition: sectoral scope, social spending, financing structure and cross-country distribution. The results confirm that all four policy dimensions significantly impact public support. Specifically, the study reveals that support is greatest for EU policy packages that target financial support at the renewable energy sector, include social investment policies, are financed by increasing taxes on the rich, and distribute resources across EU member states based on population size. Furthermore, citizens’ sensitivity to the policy design varies slightly by income position, left-right ideology and climate attitudes.

  • (2024): How sudden- versus slow-onset environmental events affect self-identification as an environmental migrant : Evidence from Vietnamese and Kenyan survey data PLOS ONE. Public Library of Science (PLoS). 2024, 19(1), e0297079. eISSN 1932-6203. Available under: doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0297079

    How sudden- versus slow-onset environmental events affect self-identification as an environmental migrant : Evidence from Vietnamese and Kenyan survey data

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    In response to changing climatic conditions, people are increasingly likely to migrate. However, individual-level survey data reveal that people mainly state economic, social, or political reasons as the main drivers for their relocation decision–not environmental motives or climate change specifically. To shed light on this discrepancy, we distinguish between sudden-onset (e.g., floods and storms) and slow-onset (e.g., droughts and salinity) climatic changes and argue that the salience of environmental conditions in individuals’ migration decisions is shaped by the type of climate event experienced. Empirically, we combine individual-level surveys with geographic information on objective climatic changes in Vietnam and Kenya. The empirical evidence suggests that sudden-onset climate events make individuals more likely to link environmental conditions to their migration decision and, hence, to identify themselves as “environmental migrants.” Regression analyses support these results and are consistent with the view that slow-onset events tend to be linked with migration decisions that are more economically motivated.

  • (2024): Divided Attitudes Toward Rectifying Injustice : How Preferences for Indigenous Policies Differ Between the Indigenous and Majority Populations of Norway and Sweden The Journal of Race, Ethnicity, and Politics. Cambridge University Press. 2024, 9(1), pp. 1-25. eISSN 2056-6085. Available under: doi: 10.1017/rep.2023.38

    Project : “Ethnic policies” – remedy for between-group inequalities?

    Divided Attitudes Toward Rectifying Injustice : How Preferences for Indigenous Policies Differ Between the Indigenous and Majority Populations of Norway and Sweden

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    Most states acknowledge the significance of Indigenous rights to rectify past injustices. Yet, on the domestic level, the realization of these rights depends on national policies. For democratic societies, questions about public opinion toward Indigenous policies are thus of great interest but remain largely unstudied. To what extent does the ethnic majority support policies conducive to Indigenous rights realization? And how different are the Indigenous population’s policy preferences? I use original experimental data from a vignette study to investigate these questions in the case of the Sámi people in Norway and Sweden. I hypothesize that groups’ attitudes are shaped by policies’ potential to alter the social status hierarchy between the majority and Indigenous populations. The results provide a nuanced picture. The ethnic majority shows significantly less support for policies facilitating Sámi linguistic, self-governance, and territorial rights. While the Sámi have, in general, more positive attitudes toward such policies, their support seems to be less pronounced than the majority’s resistance. Moreover, as attitudes are surprisingly similar when compared between Norway and Sweden, a country’s existing policy context does not appear to be crucial in the formation of these preferences.

  • (2024): Linguistic features of public service encounters : How spoken administrative language affects citizen satisfaction Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory. Oxford University Press (OUP). 2024, 34(1), pp. 122-135. ISSN 1053-1858. eISSN 1477-9803. Available under: doi: 10.1093/jopart/muac052

    Linguistic features of public service encounters : How spoken administrative language affects citizen satisfaction

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    Spoken administrative language is a critical element in the relationship between citizens and the state, especially when it comes to face-to-face interactions between officials and citizens during the delivery of public services. But preceding work offers little insights on the verbal features of street-level bureaucracy. Drawing on communication studies, we argue that administrative language differs along both a relational and an informational linguistic component. To test the consequentiality of this theory, we design a factorial survey experiment with a representative sample of 1,402 German citizens. Participants evaluated audio recordings of a hypothetical service encounter where we systematically varied the language used by the official and the service decision, measuring participants’ service satisfaction as the main outcome. Based on regression analysis, we find that relational elements of administrative language improve citizen satisfaction, independent of the service outcome, but that the effect does not hold for the informational component. These findings emphasize the importance of relational communication in citizen-state interactions, which tends to be neglected in public administration theory and practice.

  • (2024): Perception of charisma in text and speech : the role of emotion dimensions and inclusive deixis Journal of Language and Politics. Benjamins. ISSN 1569-2159. eISSN 1569-9862. Available under: doi: 10.1075/jlp.23029.var

    Perception of charisma in text and speech : the role of emotion dimensions and inclusive deixis

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    The perception of leaders as charismatic personalities has been linked to the level of (positive) emotion in their messages. The present paper reports a cross-modal perception study on the relationship between perceived charisma and positive as well as negative emotions. One hundred forty-nine participants listened or read Brexit speeches by four British politicians (David Cameron, Nicola Sturgeon, Nigel Farage, Theresa May) and rated their charisma using a 7-point Likert scale. Emotions in speeches were quantified on three dimensions (valence, arousal, dominance) and supplemented by analyses of person deixis ( I vs. we ). Results revealed that effects of emotions on perceived charisma are moderated by the modality of speeches. Emotionally positive words as well as inclusive person deixis increased charisma ratings in written messages, but the effect was reduced or not present in auditory versions of these messages. Implications arise for studies of political discourse that tend to focus on scripted speeches.

  • Does Information about Inequality and Discrimination in Early Child Care Affect Policy Preferences?

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    dc.title:


    dc.contributor.author: Hermes, Henning; Legetporer, Philipp; Mierisch, Fabian; Schwerdt, Guido; Wiederhold, Simon

  • (2024): Partisanship, blame avoidance behaviours and voter reactions to allegations of political misconduct Electoral Studies. Elsevier. 2024, 87, 102742. ISSN 0261-3794. eISSN 1873-6890. Available under: doi: 10.1016/j.electstud.2023.102742

    Partisanship, blame avoidance behaviours and voter reactions to allegations of political misconduct

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    Politicians often engage in blame avoidance behaviours in order to evade electoral punishment following allegations of misconduct. A key question concerns the (in)effectiveness of such behaviours in mitigating voter opinions about the alleged misconduct and the appropriate punishment. In this article, we examine how this (in)effectiveness may be shaped by: (1) the characteristics of blame avoidance behaviours, and (2) voters' partisan (mis)alignment with the alleged offender. We address this question using a between-subject survey experiment among a sample of Norwegian citizens (N = 1996). Our main findings suggest that blame avoidance behaviours can be effective in mitigating voters' assessment of the alleged misconduct and of the punishment the politician should face. This is particularly true when it concerns politicians from respondents' most-preferred party, and among left-wing voters. These findings help explain when and why scandals may (fail to) affect politicians’ electoral fortunes.

  • (2024): Fairness of inequality and support for redistribution : directly comparing citizens and legislators West European Politics. Taylor & Francis. 2024, 47(4), pp. 893-914. ISSN 0140-2382. eISSN 1743-9655. Available under: doi: 10.1080/01402382.2023.2170852

    Fairness of inequality and support for redistribution : directly comparing citizens and legislators

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    Economic inequality constitutes a defining challenge of our time and it remains puzzling why rising levels of inequality have not led to more redistribution. In this article a novel individual-level perspective is taken, with a focus on how much legislators and citizens agree on questions of redistribution and inequality, and what causes these mismatches. The study compares legislators’ views to a representative citizen sample in Switzerland. The results show considerable disagreement between the groups with legislators being more sceptical towards redistribution and seeing inequality as fairer outcome. The mismatch is only partially explained by legislators’ higher social status. Ideology plays a fundamental role as more polarisation according to ideological lines is found among elites and their attitudes are also more rooted in their ideology. In sum, the findings point to some underexplored angles of the puzzle of why not more redistribution has been observed and thus offer a valuable addition to the existing literature.

  • (2024): Who cares for the future? : Exploring public attitudes towards the needs of future generations in Germany Journal of European Public Policy. Taylor & Francis. 2024, 31(3), pp. 680-705. ISSN 1350-1763. eISSN 1466-4429. Available under: doi: 10.1080/13501763.2023.2165697

    Who cares for the future? : Exploring public attitudes towards the needs of future generations in Germany

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    This paper studies the determinants of support for future generations, using novel survey data for the case of Germany. I find significant, but not overwhelming support for prioritizing the needs of future generations vs. the acute needs of present-day citizens. Moreover, individual-level and contextual factors matter too. High-income and highly educated citizens are on average more supportive of the needs of future generations, the elderly and women less so. Left-wing supporters are equally more supportive of future generations, especially supporters of the Greens and those subscribing to ‘green-alternative-liberal’ values. Supporters of the right-wing populist AfD are most strongly opposed. General political trust boosts support for future generations, and economically thriving local economies are associated with higher levels of support for future generations as well.

  • (2024): How technological change affects regional voting patterns Political Science Research and Methods. Cambridge University Press (CUP). 2024, 12(1), pp. 94-112. ISSN 2049-8470. eISSN 2049-8489. Available under: doi: 10.1017/psrm.2022.62

    How technological change affects regional voting patterns

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    Does technological change fuel political disruption? Drawing on fine-grained labor market data from Germany, this paper examines how technological change affects regional electorates. We first show that the well-known decline in manufacturing and routine jobs in regions with higher robot adoption or investment in information and communication technology (ICT) was more than compensated by parallel employment growth in the service sector and cognitive non-routine occupations. This change in the regional composition of the workforce has important political implications: Workers trained for these new sectors typically hold progressive political values and support progressive pro-system parties. Overall, this composition effect dominates the politically perilous direct effect of automation-induced substitution. As a result, technology-adopting regions are unlikely to turn into populist-authoritarian strongholds.

  • (2023): Carbon inequality and support for carbon taxation European Journal of Political Research. Wiley. ISSN 0304-4130. eISSN 1475-6765. Available under: doi: 10.1111/1475-6765.12647

    Carbon inequality and support for carbon taxation

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    Stringent policies that significantly increase the cost of greenhouse gas emissions, such as CO2, are increasingly necessary for mitigating climate change. Yet while richer individuals in society generate the most CO2 emissions and thus will face the largest absolute cost burden, they also tend to be more supportive of stringent environmental policies. In this paper, we examine how information about the distribution of carbon emissions by income affects support for carbon taxation. While carbon taxation is widely advocated as the most efficient policy for mitigating climate change, it faces significant political hurdles due to its distributional costs. Using original survey data, with an embedded experiment, we find that providing information about the actual distribution of household CO2 emissions by income significantly changes individuals' support for carbon taxation. These effects are particularly pronounced at the bottom of the household income distribution, leading to increased support for costly climate policies. However, individuals who believe that carbon taxes will reduce their income continue to hold their level of support for carbon taxation. Our findings have significant implications for understanding the public's response to the distributional consequences of the green transitions and ultimately their political feasibility.

  • (2023): Can welfare states buffer technostress? : Income and technostress in the context of various OECD countries PLOS ONE. Public Library of Science (PLoS). 2023, 18(12), e0295229. eISSN 1932-6203. Available under: doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0295229

    Can welfare states buffer technostress? : Income and technostress in the context of various OECD countries

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    Many workers are experiencing the downsides of being exposed to an overload of information and communication technology (ICT), highlighting the need for resources to cope with the resulting technostress. This article offers a novel cross-level perspective on technostress by examining how the context of the welfare state influences the relationship between income and technostress. Showing that individuals with higher income experience less technostress, this study argues that the welfare state represents an additional coping resource, in particular in the form of unemployment benefits. Since unemployment benefits insure income earners in the case of job loss, the negative effect of income on technostress should increase with higher levels of unemployment generosity. In line with these expectations, empirical results based on original survey data collected in collaboration with the OECD show that the impact of income on technostress varies across welfare state contexts. Implications for public health and policymakers are being discussed.

  • (2023): Mission partly accomplished : European Union Politics at 25 European Union Politics. Sage. ISSN 1465-1165. eISSN 1741-2757. Available under: doi: 10.1177/14651165231217699

    Mission partly accomplished : European Union Politics at 25

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    In this article, we analyze how European Union Politics has evolved over the last 25 years. Our analysis demonstrates that the goals the editorial team has pursued over this quarter century have only partly been reached. While the journal has helped to consolidate EU studies as a field of research in its own rights, several problems of representation persist in the journal and the social sciences in general. We identify besides the well-known gender gap that especially authors from the (European) South and East continue to be underrepresented in submitted and published articles. While less represented and successful at the submission stage, our results show that female scholars are more likely than male author teams to publish high-impact articles. Our findings indicate that studies of political behavior, broadly conceived, and articles using quantitative methods are well-represented. The article concludes with some remarks on how the journal might help to further professionalize the study of the EU in the coming years.

  • Wie gelingt die Integration junger Zugewanderter in den Arbeitsmarkt? : Das Integration@Work-Projekt

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    Aktuell gibt es eine steigende Zuwanderung in den deutschen Arbeitsmarkt – nicht nur von Geflüchteten, sondern auch durch die aktive Anwerbung ausländischer Fachkräfte. Im Hinblick auf eine erfolgreiche ökonomische und soziale Integration spielt das duale Ausbildungssystem eine wichtige Rolle. Allerdings zeigen sich bei zugewanderten Auszubildenden deutlich höhere Abbruchquoten als bei Auszubildenden mit deutschem Pass. Besonders ausgeprägt ist das in Branchen, die stark vom Fachkräftemangel betroffen sind, wie im Handwerk oder den Pflegeberufen. In diesem Policy Paper werden Faktoren identifiziert, die die Integration junger Zugewanderter in den Ausbildungsmarkt verbessern und entsprechende Handlungsempfehlungen an Ausbildungsbetriebe und politische Akteure formuliert.

  • (2023): Public opinion effects of digital state repression : How internet outages shape government evaluation in Africa Journal of Information Technology and Politics. Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group. ISSN 1933-1681. eISSN 1933-169X. Available under: doi: 10.1080/19331681.2023.2283011

    Public opinion effects of digital state repression : How internet outages shape government evaluation in Africa

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    Internet shutdowns have become a popular instrument for repressive regimes to silence dissent in a digitized world. While authorities seek to suppress opponents by imposing Internet outages, we know little about how the public reacts to such incisive measures. The regime might face anger and resentment from the public as a response to Internet deprivation. Why do regimes still use Internet shutdowns when they do not only face economic but also societal losses? In this paper, I argue that Internet shutdowns lower the public’s evaluation of the political leadership as citizens blame the government for the service outages. For the analysis, I combine fine-grained data on Internet outages with survey data from the Afrobarometer and apply an “unexpected event during survey design.” Results show that citizens do not hold the government accountable for Internet disruptions, thus making Internet shutdowns a powerful tool for autocrats to silent dissent digitally.

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