Political Depolarization in German Public Opinion, 1980–2010

Bauer, Paul Cornelius; Munzert, Simon (2013). Political Depolarization in German Public Opinion, 1980–2010. Political Science Research and Methods, 1(1), pp. 67-89. Cambridge University Press 10.1017/psrm.2013.7

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Little is known about political polarization in German public opinion. This article offers an issue-based perspective and explores trends of opinion polarization in Germany. Public opinion polarization is conceptualized and measured as alignment of attitudes. Data from the German General Social Survey (1980 to 2010) comprise attitudes towards manifold issues, which are classified into several dimensions. This study estimates multilevel models that reveal general and issue- as well as dimension-specific levels and trends in attitude alignment for both the whole German population and sub-groups. It finds that public opinion polarization has decreased over the last three decades in Germany. In particular, highly educated and more politically interested people have become less polarized over time. However, polarization seems to have increased in attitudes regarding gender issues. These findings provide interesting contrasts to existing research on the American public.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

03 Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences > Social Sciences > Institute of Political Science

UniBE Contributor:

Bauer, Paul Cornelius

Subjects:

300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 320 Political science

ISSN:

2049-8470

Publisher:

Cambridge University Press

Language:

English

Submitter:

Mahboob Hasan

Date Deposited:

19 Mar 2014 13:58

Last Modified:

22 Oct 2019 22:27

Publisher DOI:

10.1017/psrm.2013.7

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.43107

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/43107

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