Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS



Project ID: 334054
Funded under: FP7-PEOPLE
Country: Spain

Novel methods to better study citizen attitudes and political behaviour

Even though the study of political behaviour has advanced knowledge about people's attitudes and how they become politically active and make decisions, research has its limitations. An EU initiative is exploring the complex factors that drive political attitudes and behaviour and how these influence political science.
Novel methods to better study citizen attitudes and political behaviour
Citizens' political attitudes and behaviour largely depend on economic, political or institutional context. As citizen politics become more complex, conventional research models and approaches are limited in their ability to explain individual political behaviour.

To address the issue, the EU-funded TRIANGULATE (Attitudinal change in troubled times: A triangulation strategy) project aims to examine the consequences of income inequality on pro-social attitudes, economic depression on attitudes towards democracy, and electoral practices and voter turnout on governmental legitimacy. The project will achieve this by developing and applying an innovative strategy that combines the use of several methodological approaches and experiments in European political behaviour research.

During the first two years, project partners focused on four strategic research questions. The first considers whether income inequality reduces social and political trust and who this affects most. A second asks if political conflict polarises national identities and whether certain citizens are protected from such polarisation. Yet another explores how political debate on moral issues influences voter choices and election results. The final question looks at how social pressure impacts voting frequency.

To date, project outcomes have been disseminated at over 10 conferences and invited presentations. An article was published in a leading interdisciplinary journal devoted to the advancement of socioeconomics. A chapter was written that contributed to a book on experimental political science. Four working papers are also underway.

Ongoing work in TRIANGULATE will help to gather the evidence needed to understand the role of the individual citizen within the political process. This is especially beneficial during a time when many basic features of citizen attitudes and behaviours are changing in ways that make modelling citizen politics more complex.

Related information


Life Sciences


Citizen attitudes, political behaviour, political attitudes, citizen politics, attitudinal change
Record Number: 175046 / Last updated on: 2016-01-28
Domain: Industrial Technologies