Forthcoming and Online First Articles
International Journal of Public Policy
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International Journal of Public Policy (7 papers in press)
Abstract: This paper discusses whether the swift rise and radicalisation of the AfD as the first electorally successful far-right party in Germany in decades was caused by a general societal shift to the right. It first operationalises the concept of a shift towards the (far) right with references to Norberto Bobbio and Cas Mudde. Then it discusses whether such a shift has taken place on four levels: public policy, political behaviour, individual attitudes, and public discourse. The picture is heterogeneous but offers no compelling evidence for a societal shift to the right. As an alternative explanation, the paper argues that the rise and radicalisation of the AfD should rather be understood as the formation of a far-right project in reaction to an ambivalent process of liberalisation a process of liberalisation that can itself be endangered by this far-right formation.
Keywords: far right; alternative for Germany; alternative für Deuschland; AfD; populist radical right; extreme right; right-wing extremism; German politics; normalisation; mainstreaming of far-right parties.
Fiscal Austerity as a Driver of Populism in the European Union
by Volodymyr Samsonov
Abstract: This research investigates the role of austerity in the rise of right- and left-wing populism in European politics. The study examines macro-hypotheses to determine whether austerity measures contribute to increased populism, and meso-hypotheses that evaluate populism risks of Keynesian and neoclassical austerity strategies. Statistical analysis is conducted to test these hypotheses. The overall findings suggest that there are no significant links between austerity and populism when differences between European states are disregarded. However, a more detailed analysis reveals that in South European states austerity plays a significant role in populist crises. The adverse political effects of austerity in these states stem from a mismatch between voters and policymakers perspectives on austerity strategies. In EU states with social-democratic, market-based, and continental European capitalism, austerity is not a principal factor in increasing populism. The findings of this study can assist policymakers in finding politically viable models of austerity packages in the EU.
Keywords: fiscal austerity; fiscal policies; budget deficit; debt crises; Keynesian theories; neoclassical theories; European politics; political stability; populism.
The political economy of populism: An agenda-theoretic approach with special reference to Germany
by Arne Heise
Abstract: Populism in modern Western democracies is on the rise. The existing literature concentrates on explanations based on the growing socio-economic and socio-cultural polarisation of modern societies driven by globalisation and individualisation on the one hand and the un-responsiveness of unrepresentative governments and non-majoritarian bodies on the other hand. Although such explanations certainly contribute partly to our understanding of the phenomenon called populism particularly the (right or left-wing) extremist dimension of it, it does not sufficiently explain the seemingly non-ideological populism of the middle class which, at least in Germany, accounts for the bigger, yet less visible part of populism. The objective of the paper is to focus on systematic weaknesses of collective decision-making in liberal-representative democracies in explaining populism (particularly of the middle class) as a growing critique of the institutions of liberal democracy.
Keywords: populism; liberal democracy; political economy; minority rule; elites; Germany.
Uncertainty A Unifying Approach to Populism and Confidence in Government
by Barbara Dluhosch, Ana Soliz De Stange
Abstract: The fact that real incomes and living standards have improved in numerous countries and for many individuals stand in stark contrast to the discontent with government seemingly showing up in populist movements around the world. By marrying microdata of the 2017-2020 European and World Values Surveys on confidence in government with text-mining data on uncertainty as provided by the World Uncertainty Index, this paper explores in an international cross-sectional ordered logit analysis how narratives as to insecurity undermine confidence in government and thus provide fertile ground for political conflict and a them-versus-us attitude vis-
Keywords: cross-country comparison; government; regime satisfaction; uncertainty; institutions.
Does the Quality of Government Affect Economic Growth? Evidence from the QOG Dataset
by Huong Le
Abstract: Does the quality of government (QoG) affect economic growth? Whether or not a higher governance quality leads to a higher rate of economic growth. This paper sheds light on this debate by reinvestigating the relationship between the quality of government and economic growth, utilizing four different operationalizations of governance quality, including the rule of law, quality of democracy, public integrity, and governance from the quality of government (QoG) dataset of 36 OECD countries. Contributing to the growing body of work on the correlation between governance quality and economic growth, this paper suggests that (1) despite using different operationalizations of governance quality, the estimation results suggest a statistically significant and positive correlation between the quality of government and economic growth; and (2) developed countries obtain more significant benefits of good governance on economic growth than developing countries.
Keywords: Economic growth; quality of government; rule of law; quality of democracy; public integrity; governance.
Changes in varieties of capitalism within the OECD between 2010 and 2020
by Zoltan Bartha
Abstract: This study aims to reveal different varieties of capitalism and to uncover new patterns of development that emerged between 2010 and 2020. A hybrid model is applied that quantifies three pillars of development (future F, outside O, inside I) using supply-side and demand-side indicators that measure norms, institutions, and policies. Investigating 34 OECD members, this study describes five varieties of capitalism: traditional, dualistic, government-led, open market-based, and human capital-based models. It is suggested that the most significant cut-off point in the development of OECD economies in this period was along the green growth dimension, where European countries with a tradition in coordinated markets outperform the rest. Using Israel and Estonia as an example, it is also suggested that institutional and policy changes that enhance the quality of governance and make coordination more effective are the way out of the middle-income trap.
Keywords: development path; economic policy; green growth; institutions; middle-income trap; OECD; varieties of capitalism.
The policy of non-decision: The case of clinical trials in Israel
by Michal Neubauer-Shani, Etienne Lepicard
Abstract: The modern world is characterised by dynamic various changes, which generate new multifaceted issues that are candidates for policymaking. However, liberal democracies often abstain from tackling these issues, despite implications not favouring the public. While most countries have regulated the sensitive issue of clinical trials through primary legislation, the state of Israel addressed this issue through secondary legislation and a circular issued by the Ministry of Health's director-general. Despite this policy lacks crucial elements that would protect the subjects of clinical trials, several attempts to change it through primary legislation, have failed. This article contends that excluding the alternative of comprehensive legislation from the agenda is enabled by the policy of non-decision adopted by policymakers, demonstrating covert power. Based on a thematic analysis of semi-structured interviews and existing sources, this article will explain the continued adoption of the non-decision policy by identifying the mobilisation of bias that characterises this arena and examining the tactics employed by stakeholders to maintain the status quo.
Keywords: clinical trials; non-decision; policy agenda; mobilisation of bias; covert power; status quo; Nazi medical trials; human experiments in medicine; Israel.