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Talk by Dr. Carl Berning, UC Irvine

Thu, February 27, 2014 | Batts 5.108

12:00 PM

On Thursday, March 27, Carl Berning will discuss "The Dynamics of Radical Right-Wing Populist Party Preferences and Perceived Group Threat: A Panel Analysis of Three Competing Hypotheses in the Netherlands"

Carl is a Visiting Research Fellow at the Center for the Study of Democracy at the University of California, Irvine.  He is also a PhD student at the University of Cologne (Germany).

Paper Abstract:

Existing cross-sectional research considers citizens’ preferences for radical right-wing populist (RRP) parties to be centrally driven by their perception that immigrants threaten the well-being of the national ingroup. However, longitudinal evidence for this relationship is largely missing. To remedy this gap in the literature, we developed three competing hypotheses to investigate: (a) whether perceived group threat is temporally prior to RRP party preferences, (b) whether RRP party preferences are temporally prior to perceived group threat, or (c) whether the relation between perceived group threat and RRP party preferences is bidirectional. Based on multiwave panel data from the Netherlands spanning the years 2008-2013, we examined the merits of these hypotheses using autoregressive cross-lagged structural equation models. The results show that perceptions of threatened group interests precipitate rather than follow citizens’ preferences for RRP parties. These findings clarify our knowledge of the dynamic micro-social mechanisms underlying RRP party preferences.


Carl Berning studied Sociology and Political Science at the University of Cologne, UC San Diego and Utrecht University, NL. He graduated from the University of Cologne in 2011 (with the equivalent of an MSc in Sociology) and is a PhD student at Cologne.  Currently he is a visiting research fellow at the Center for the Study of Democracy (UC Irvine). Before his stay in Irvine, he was a visiting researcher at the University of Nijmegen, NL. He is a fellow of the research training group SOCLIFE  “Social Order and Life Chances in Cross-National Comparison” and granted a three year scholarship funded by the German Science Foundation (DFG), 2011-2014.

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Sponsored by: Immigration Studies

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