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Crises, Welfare, and Populism

  • Petar Stankov
Chapter

Abstract

The chapter defines what populism is, reviews the literature on the drivers of populism, and offers an empirical investigation into what makes populist agendas increasingly sellable after the Crisis. The impact of five main factors both before the Great Recession, and after it, is explored: depth of recessions, unemployment, inflation, austerity and income inequality. The impact of migration is achnowledged but left out due to data limitations. Fixed effects panel methods show that recessions are the most consistent predictor of populist resurgences. Unemployment also plays a role in spurring left-wing populist support. Surprisingly, austerity and income inequality rarely play a statistically significant role in shaping populist voter attitudes. Case studies from around the world bring additional support to the conclusions on both the empirical political economy of populism, and the relationship between economic freedom and welfare.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of National and World EconomySofiaBulgaria

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