Opting for an Open Society? Personality Traits and Attitudes toward the Openness of Switzerland

Ackermann, Kathrin; Ackermann, Maya; Freitag, Markus (2018). Opting for an Open Society? Personality Traits and Attitudes toward the Openness of Switzerland. Comparative European politics, 16(3), pp. 413-433. Palgrave Macmillan 10.1057/cep.2016.18

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The tension between openness and closedness is one of the most important cleavages in Swiss political debates. In the present article, we study the psychological foundations of attitudes regarding this issue. More precisely, we examine the link between personality and attitudes toward the degree of openness of Switzerland as a general stance toward the cultural, economic and political alignment of the country. Personality is understood as a complex and multifaceted concept that forms the basis for consistent patterns of attitudes and behavior. We build on the Five-Factor Theory to explain the link between personality traits, contextual factors and political attitudes. Analyzing survey data from a random sample of Swiss citizens, we find clear evidence that personality traits affect political attitudes. Furthermore, we are able to demonstrate that the relationship between personality and attitudes toward the degree of openness of Switzerland is moderated by perceived ethnic diversity in the neighborhood.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

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

UniBE Contributor:

Ackermann, Kathrin Maria; Ackermann, Maya Esther and Freitag, Markus

Subjects:

300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 320 Political science

ISSN:

1472-4790

Publisher:

Palgrave Macmillan

Language:

English

Submitter:

Maya Esther Ackermann

Date Deposited:

02 May 2016 14:16

Last Modified:

26 Jul 2019 13:53

Publisher DOI:

10.1057/cep.2016.18

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/79398

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