English title: Norms of Citizenship: An Exploration into the Individual and System-Level Determinants of Norm Relevance.

Author(s): Peter Kotzian -

Language: English

Type: Conference paper/poster

Year: 2009


Norms of citizenship are seen as an important precondition for a functioning polity. But what determines the importance of these norms in the society? Are individual-level features, such as education or social embeddedness relevant? Or, does the relevance of norms vary due to contextual effects, like the performance of societal institutions? At the descriptive level, norms can be distinguished into three categories, Solidarity, Civic Duty and Civic Engagement, and it is not the case the same set of factors affect all three categories in a similar way. The paper conducts an exploration in the individual and system-level factors. The findings indicate that there are few factors in the public sphere, which affect the importance of norms in a noteworthy way. What can be explained well are differences in the average level of norm-importance among countries. At this level, it is a paradoxical result that in countries with well functioning institutions citizens perceive norms and rules as less important. Within a country, the explanatory power is substantially lower. Only few features stand out: higher institutional trust goes together with more attachment to the norms on which the system relies. Subjective evaluations of system performance does not matter for norms. There is no generational effect in the sense that younger citizens hold other norms in higher regards. Elder citizens are more attached to “classical” Civic Duty norms, but are not less attached to the “modern” Civic Engagement norms. In accordance with other findings, there is a erosion, not a replacement of norms.

Conference name: ISPP 32nd Annual Scientific Meeting

Location: Dublin (Ireland)

Start date: Jul 14, 2009

Type: Paper

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