Monthly Archives: July 2014

Savings in public services after the crisis: an analysis of public preferences

This new article in IRAS analyses citizens’ preferred government reactions to the financial crisis. Using public opinion (N = 23,652) data from 27 EU member countries, we empirically test a model for citizen preferences for reducing spending in public services versus government investment in measures to boost the economy as a response to the financial crisis. We look at individual- and country-level determinants of attitudes to savings in public services, and concentrate on four groups of explanations: political disaffection, ideology, self-interest, and macro-economic conditions. It was found that political disaffection and the respondent’s ideological orientation both have effects on preferences, as well as whether one experiences economic strain or receives welfare services. Macro-economic conditions, such as a country’s government deficit level, public debt or public expenditure have, surprisingly, no effect on citizens’ financial policy preferences. (link to preprint on SSRN).