National Identity and Political Behaviour

Category: Applied Microeconomics and Organization Seminar
When: 03 July 2024
, 14:15
 - 15:30
Where: RuW 4.201

Title: National Identity and Political Behaviour (with Juliette de Wit)

Abstract: We study if and how national identification relates to people’s voting behaviour. Unlike other studies that have studied the impact of national identity on voting, we argue that voters identify with the nation state in distinctive ways. This translates into different political issues being salient to voters, namely those issues that are salient to their identity. As such, we propose that the effects of national identification on voting behaviour differ significantly depending on the way voters identify with the nation state. We use unique panel survey data from the Netherlands to study the relation between three types of national identification (labelled ethnic, civic, indifferent) and voting behaviour (i.e., turnout and party preferences). We document that the type and strength of national identification matters for turnout and party preferences. The three types of national identification relate to voting behaviour in significantly distinctive ways. Vote switching behaviour is in line with the uncovered patterns, and results cannot be accounted for when using measures of national identification that only measure the strength of national identification.