CeRSP Working Paper 17/01: Expectations of Future Economic Security and National System Support

Matthew Loveless and Chiara Binelli

Abstract: Using original, nationally representative data on young jobless Italian university graduates, we assess the effect of individuals’ expectations on job security, stability and future earnings on satisfaction with democracy. Using administrative data to control for province-level economic context, we find that those expecting increased job insecurity and instability have lower satisfaction with democracy. This provides an important contribution to understanding system support by meaningfully conceptualizing and operationalizing individuals’ future economic expectations as a determinant of support for national governance. At the same time, these findings bode poorly for many European countries as the long-term effects of high levels of unemployment among the young appear to be potentially delegitimizing.

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