Title: Mind that Gap: The Mediating Role of Intelligence and Individuals’ Socio-Economic Status in Explaining Disparities in External Political Efficacy in 28 Countries
Citation: INTELLIGENCE vol. 62 p. 125-137
Publication Year: 2017
JRC N°: JRC106200
ISSN: 0160-2896
URI: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0160289616302744?via%3Dihub
DOI: 10.1016/j.intell.2017.03.006
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: We examine between-country variations in overall levels of external political efficacy and disparities in political efficacy by parental socio-economic status (SES). Furthermore, we identify the mediating role of individuals’ cognitive abilities and own SES, as well as how contextual characteristics determine the importance cognitive abilities and individuals’ own SES have for political self-efficacy beliefs. We use data from the 2012 OECD Survey of Adult Skills, a large-scale international assessment containing information on respondents’ SES, cognitive skills, their parents’ SES and their self-reported external political efficacy in 28 countries worldwide. We find that external political efficacy is strongly related to parents’ SES and that, on average, around 60% of the parental SES gradient is mediated by cognitive abilities (which account for around 30% of the parental SES gradient) and own SES (which account for the remaining 30%). Such mediating role differs across countries. Cognitive abilities are less strongly associated with external political efficacy in countries with greater respect for the rule of law and lower perceived corruption and individuals’ own SES is less strongly associated with external political efficacy in countries with single-winner voting rules (such as winner-takes-all or first-past-the-post rules).
JRC Directorate:Growth and Innovation

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