Political mistrust in southern Europe since the Great Recession

Author (Person) ,
Series Title
Series Details Vol.22, No.2, June 2017, p197-217
Publication Date June 2017
ISSN 1362-9395
Content Type


The political effects of the Great Recession on southern Europe were substantial. The rapid economic deterioration of Portugal, Italy, Greece and Spain from 2008 onwards was accompanied by an increase in citizens’ dissatisfaction towards national political institutions. The sources of political mistrust in the southern periphery were of a political and economic nature.

Using quantitative data from EU member states from 2000 to 2015, this paper evaluates the suitability of competing theories in explaining this shift in political attitudes in southern European countries. The paper argues that economic crises act as an external shock that places politics, politicians and institutions in the spotlight as a result of citizens’ deteriorating performance of the economy. The findings suggest that unemployment, public debt and political corruption are key variables in understanding short-term changes in political mistrust.

Source Link http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13629395.2016.1168962
Subject Categories
Countries / Regions