Exploring the gender gap: women, men and public attitudes towards European integration

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Series Details Vol.1, No.3, October 2000, p267-291
Publication Date October 2000
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The authors attempt to further the 'normal' study of public opinion in the European Union (EU) by examining the relationship of gender to attitudes toward integration. Using Eurobarometer 42 they demonstrate that a modest gender gap exists, with women being less enthusiastic about the EU than men. They then construct a model to explain male and female attitudes using measures of political distance, women's values, ideology, economic vulnerability and national tradition. Women's attitudes are more sensitive to knowledge about the EU and to economic pessimism than men's, while men's attitudes are determined more by interest in politics, traditionalist values, ideology, and working-class status. They conclude by analyzing interesting differences that emerge when respondents are grouped by 'type of welfare state'.

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