Euroscepticism as a syndrome of stagnation? Regional inequality and trust in the EU

Sofia Vasilopoulou, Liisa Talving

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This article advances the literature on the spatial patterns of EU support by arguing that the relationship between regional inequality and EU trust is not linear. We posit that, to fully understand this relationship, we should systematically investigate three dimensions of regional inequality, i.e., regional wealth status, regional wealth growth, and regional wealth growth at different levels of wealth status. Using individual-level survey data for EU27 countries and the UK from 11 Eurobarometer waves (2015–2019), we show that a non-linear association exists whereby poor and rich European regions tend to trust the EU more compared to middle-income regions, and that within-region over-time growth is associated with higher levels of EU trust. We demonstrate that the association between growth and EU trust is more pronounced among poor and middle-income regions compared to rich regions. Our findings have implications about the nature of public Euroscepticism and the ways in which to address it.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of European Public Policy
Early online date6 Oct 2023
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 6 Oct 2023

Keywords

  • EU trust
  • Euroscepticism
  • geography
  • inequality
  • wealth growth
  • wealth status

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