Just Sick of It? : Health and Political Trust in Western Europe

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Mattila , V M & Rapeli , L 2018 , ' Just Sick of It? Health and Political Trust in Western Europe ' , European Journal of Political Research , vol. 57 , no. 1 , pp. 116-134 . https://doi.org/10.1111/1475-6765.12218

Title: Just Sick of It? : Health and Political Trust in Western Europe
Author: Mattila, Vesa Mikko; Rapeli, Lauri
Contributor organization: Department of Political and Economic Studies (2010-2017)
Political Science
Intraparty competition: the neglected dimension of electoral politics (IntraComp)
Date: 2018-02
Language: eng
Number of pages: 19
Belongs to series: European Journal of Political Research
ISSN: 0304-4130
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/1475-6765.12218
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/321493
Abstract: This article explores two theoretical possibilities for why personal health may affect political trust: the psychological-democratic contract theory, and the role of personal experience in opinion formation. It argues that citizens with health impairments are more likely to experience the direct effects of political decisions as they are more dependent on public health services. Negative subjective evaluations of public services can lower trust levels, especially if people's expectations are high. Using European Social Survey data, the association between health and trust in 19 Western European states is analysed. The results indicate that people in poor health exhibit lower levels of trust towards the political system than people in good health. The differences in trust between those in good and poor health are accentuated among citizens with left-leaning ideological values. The results suggest that welfare issues may constitute a rare context in which personal, rather than collective, experiences affect opinion formation.
Subject: 5142 Social policy
517 Political science
political trust
welfare state
public health services
opinion formation
Peer reviewed: Yes
Rights: unspecified
Usage restriction: openAccess
Self-archived version: acceptedVersion

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