We highly recommend a new paper by Gabriela Czarnek and Małgorzata Kossowska from our Centre.
In the article, our colleagues analyzed the effects of needs for security and certainty (NSC) on economic beliefs and they suggested that these relationships are rather complex and prone not only to moderating effects of political engagement, as previous studies suggested, but also to the contextual factors, that is the country-level political narrative around the welfare state.
They analyzed data from the 2016 and 2018 European Social Survey and showed that previous theories suggesting that political engagement reverses the relationship between NSC and economic beliefs are largely limited to the countries under Continental and Liberal types, i.e., countries with rather limited welfare provision. Specifically, NSC was related to left-wing economic beliefs among politically non-engaged, whereas to right-wing economic beliefs for the engaged among these countries. Under Eastern type, the NSC was related to left-wing economic beliefs irrespective of the political engagement. Under the Nordic type, NSC was related to left-wing beliefs among non-engaged but among the engaged, these effects are non-significant. The effects for the Southern type were mixed.
The current findings pose a challenge to the theorizing on the relationship between values and economic beliefs. The authors suggest this topic is especially important given rising inequalities which are likely to further deepen amid the current global health emergency, coupled with the climate change crisis, and the associated transformation in the global economy.