The Road to Progressive Political Institutions: Revisiting the Link between Education and Democracy
Volume 13 (1)
Peyper, C.; van Eyden, R.; Blackmore, S.

The education-democracy nexus has been examined extensively in the literature, with mixed results. Glaeser et al. (2004) for instance, report that education is causal for democracy; Acemoglu et al. (2005) reject that finding in a time-effect controlled replication study. This paper revisits the role of education in forging political institutions that are progressive and democratic, hypothesizing that the democratizing effect of education may hinge on the kind and quality of education. Qualitative dimensions of education are not captured by measures like secondary enrollment that reflect levels of attainment. The study uses generalized method of moments and probit methodology for a sample of 105 countries over the period 1981 to 2015 to probe whether the qualitative dimension of education matters for liberal democracy. The results support the findings of Acemoglu et al. that education in unqualified terms does not cause democracy; education of the "right" kind and quality, however, in the sense that it fosters human empowerment through emancipative mindsets and critical-liberal value orientations, is a strong driver of progressive or democratic political institutions in a society. Trade openness as an institutional sub-index that signals societies’ openness to outside influence is also an important determinant of liberal democracy. The impact of outside influence is underscored by the significance of spatial (neighboring) democracy measures. Furthermore, there is evidence of a causal impact of geographical country traits when the cool-water measure of geography is used. This study also finds a heightened probability of a more democratic regime when levels of human empowerment and trade openness rise and that parliamentary rather than presidential democracy is the most probable amidst high levels of human empowerment and trade openness.

Key words: Liberal democracy, emancipative values, education, human empowerment

Word count: 12,990

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Human Empowerment before Prosperity and Liberty
Volume 12 (1)
Blackmore, S.; van Eyden, R.

This paper explores the fundamental causes of disparate modern-day development outcomes. The study explores the deep drivers of prosperity from a broad institutional perspective, relying on formal institutions, informal institutions and rule-enforcement characteristics. This broad view of institutionalism is fused with human empowerment in a probabilistic development sequence hypothesising that regime-independent state capacity may establish existential security, which cultivates the human empowerment needed to drive the progression towards prosperity and liberty. The analysis uses a dynamic, panel-data model specification and General Methods of Moments for a sample of 105 countries over the period 1981 to 2015. The results suggest that existential security and eventual prosperity hinge on a capable, constrained state and an empowered society. The poor-country deficit in human empowerment, represented by mind-broadening education and empowerment values, proves more limiting to achieve prosperity than the shortfalls in all other drivers of prosperity, including exports and investment.

Key words: Poverty, Economic Development, Institutions, State Capacity, Human Empowerment

Word count: 12,989

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Clashing Values: Cultural and Geopolitical Transformations of Post-Cold War Europe
Volume 11 (4)
Akaliyski, P., Welzel, C.
Soon after the collapse of Soviet-type communism in Central and Eastern Europe, a new geopolitical division began to reshape Europe. For the first time, our study demonstrates how strongly this new geopolitical division has been propped up by an emerging cultural gap, of which “emancipative values” are the most powerful marker. Using the European Values Study/World Values Survey 1990-2014, we find that the former Iron Curtain no longer constitutes a cultural boundary as the ex-communist states that joined the European Union have converged with the West’s strong emphasis on emancipative values. A new, and steeply growing, cultural gap has emerged, however, between the European Union and its Eastern neighbors. The two competing geopolitical formations in the West and East of Europe—the European and Eurasian Unions, respectively—have diverged culturally in recent decades. Using a supervised machine learning algorithm, we assess the relative importance of various possible explanations for this cultural sorting out process. The divergence can be explained by contrasting supranational identities that rulers have increasingly accentuated to strengthen their nations’ appraisal or dismissal of emancipative values, thus making these values an increasingly distinct marker of cultural Westernness. Our study is the first to link this groundbreaking cultural transformation to civilizational identities and geopolitical rivalry.

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Measurement Equivalence? A Tale of False Obsessions and a Cure
Volume 11 (3)
Welzel, C., L. Brunkert, R. Inglehart & S. Kruse
During the last decade, Multi-Group Confirmatory Factor Analysis (MGCFA) has risen to the unchallenged gold standard of establishing measurement equivalence in crosscultural research. A key premise of MGCFA is that multi-item constructs are incomparable between countries when their dimensional cohesions within countries are dissimilar. We argue that this comparability logic is lopsided because, in fact, dimensional cohesions within countries are incomparable between countries. The reason is a simple, albeit largely unknown, principle: how strongly coherent a construct can appear within countries is a function of the country means’ scale positions. Indeed, as country means approach the extreme ends of a closed scale, dimensional cohesion statistics deteriorate and make the respective construct appear less coherent. But this impression is deceptive because the correlation calculus that underlies every dimensional analysis operates within narrower margins as country means turn more extreme. Hence, seeming variability in dimensional cohesions is an altogether inconclusive indication under greatly varying country means. Because of that, such variability proves irrelevant to measurement equivalence properly understood—which is present when similar overall scores on a construct map in similar fashion on other variables of interest. We exemplify the latter point using a most prominent victim of MGCFA-based incomparability verdicts: the Emancipative Values Index (EVI). Our insights re-enforce Welzel and Inglehart’s conclusion that the comparability of multi-item constructs should be judged by their predictive powers across countries, instead of their dimensional cohesions within countries, even more so in recognition of the fact that these two criteria operate against each other.

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Nationalism, Liberalism and Human Nature: What Mearsheimer Gets Wrong
Volume 11 (2)
The paper is a response to an argument made in John J. Mearsheimer’s book "The Great Delusion: Liberal Dreams and International Realities" that, in international relations, liberalism will always lose to nationalism. He founds his argument on the idea that nationalism draws its strength from human's survival instinct. That survival is of overriding importance to both individual humans and the social group. He juxtapositions our survival instincts with our need for individual autonomy, or freedom. Liberalism is founded in individualism. Because survival trumps individualism, nationalism trumps liberalism. He uses a concept that there is a set of universal "first principles" that, when elaborated on, are essentially human values. Mearsheimer uses philosophical texts to make his arguments. My counter-argument is that liberalism and individualism are just as powerful as nationalism and collectivism under the right conditions. I use the Human Development Index (HDI), World Value Survey, and Polity IV data to argue that survival and individualism are ends of a spectrum that can be related to the conditions a population experiences.

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The Dynamics of Migrants’ Values and their Relations with Human Development (1981 – 2014)
Volume 11 (1)
Between 1981 and 2015, the world faced the intensification of international migration flows. These flows are related to shifts in the values of the respective populations. This article analyzes differences and changes in migrants’ values compared to non-migrants, for developed and developing countries, using the World Values Survey (1981-2014). I pursue three hypotheses: (1) migrants’ values in developing countries changed less than those in developed ones; (2) there are substantial differences be-tween migrants’ and non-migrants’ values; (3) most countries are moving toward stronger post-materialist and autonomy values, but this trend is more pronounced in developed countries. Results show markedly different values between migrants and non-migrants: migrants tend to be more post-materialist and less autonomous than non-migrants.

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The Power of the Family: New Data Reveal the Role of the Historical Family as the Instigator of Disparate and Lasting Developmental Trajectories
Volume 10 (1)
Szoltysek, M., Poniat, R.

Recent years have witnessed a growing interest in the role of the historical family as the instigator of disparate developmental trajectories. However, more work is needed to underpin these findings within comprehensive and robust data quality frameworks. Using a novel historical database of the European family we show that countries starting out from more patriarchal family structures in the past exhibit more hierarchical gender relations, more collectivist mindsets, and lower levels of economic and human development today. Given the irreversibility of these relationships, we argue that historical family patterns set countries on vicious-vs.-virtuous trajectories leading to divergent developmental outcomes today.

Key words: family systems - comparative development – patriarchy - historical persistence

Word count: 11,045 (excluding footnotes and appendix)

Citation: Szołtysek, M. & R. Poniat (2018). “The Power of the Family: New Data Reveal the Role of the Historical Family as the Instigator of Disparate and Lasting Developmental Trajectories” World Values Research 10(1):1-39.

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Misconceptions of Measurement Equivalence: Time for a Paradigm Shift
Volume 8 (5)
Welzel, C.; Inglehart, R.

Structural equation modelers judge multi-item constructs against three requirements: (1) multiple items converge in a single dimension; (2) individual-level patterns of item convergence are invariant across countries; (3) aggregate-level patterns of item convergence replicate those at the individual level. This approach involves two premises: measurement validity hinges solely on a construct's internal convergence and convergence patterns at the individual level have priority over those at the aggregate level. We question both premises (a) because convergence patterns at the aggregate-level exist in their own right and (b) because only a construct's external linkages reveal its reality outreach. In support of these claims, we use the example of "emancipative values" to show that constructs can entirely lack convergence at the individual level and nevertheless exhibit powerful and important linkages at the aggregate level. Consequently, we advocate a paradigm shift from internal convergence towards external linkage as the prime criterion of validity.

Key words: equivalence, external linkage, internal convergence, validity.

Word count: 7,216 (version accepted October 1st 2015).

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Unity, Plurality and/or Hybridity? Assessing the Global Pattern of Political Cultures
Volume 8 (4)
Schubert, S.

Many political culture researchers claim that democratic values are universal and worldwide democratization hence only a question of time. This universalist position has recently been challenged. Proponents of a pluralist position refer to cultural differences between civilizations and argue that some political values impede global democratization. Still other authors emphasize transcultural processes that lead to political hybridization rather than democratization by Western standards. These three positions have not yet been systematically confronted with empirical evidence. This article provides such an assessment of the current global pattern of political cultures. The (dis)similarities of up to 57 countries in terms of political values are mapped using data from the World Values Survey (2005-2008) and multidimensional scaling. The results show that while some democratic values do seem to be global phenomena, there is also evidence for regional variation and hybridity, especially regarding non-democratic values.

Key words: global map of political cultures, democratization, world culture, civilizations, hybridity.

Word count: 7,124 (version accepted August 16th 2015).

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World Values Survey Response and Behavior. Emancipative and Secular Values Predict Cooperation, Protection of Property and Pro-Social Behavior
Volume 8 (3)
Kistler, D.; Thöni, C.; Welzel, C.

Measures from standardized surveys are the main data source for cross-cultural research. Yet, a direct link between survey responses and individual behavior is rarely observed. We study the link between values and various forms of pro-social behavior. We invite the respondents of the sixth wave of the World Values Survey in Germany to participate in an online experiment. The experiment consists of a series of incentivized games and allows us to study the link between survey measured moral values and behavior. The evidence boils down to three findings. While emancipative values motivate higher common pool contributions (1) and higher donations to charitable organizations (2), secular values inspire more productive and less protective investments (3). We argue that incentivized behavioral experiments offer a promising complementary tool to measure cross-societal differences, with the distinct advantage that the underlying decision situation is defined by formal rules and payoff functions, which are independent of language and cultural context.

Key words: values; behavior; experiment; survey; equivalence, cooperation, prosocial behavior; property

Word count: 8,568 (version accepted September 10th 2015).

WVR_08_03_Kistler_Thoni_Welzel.pdf [Download count:1391]

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Testing the Revised Theory of Modernization: Measurement and Explanatory Aspects
Volume 8 (2)
Dülmer, H.; Inglehart, R.; Welzel, C.

Inglehart and Welzel (2005) argue that modernization moves in two phases. The transition from agrarian to industrial society fosters a shift from ‘traditional to secular-rational values’, the transition from industrial to postindustrial society a shift from ‘survival to self-expression values’. We test for the first time the measurement model and the explanatory model of the theory in a multilevel framework. To obtain a reliable measure, four items and the assumption of orthogonal value dimensions need to be given up. Testing our new, reliable measure confirms the explanatory component of the theory. Based on the new dimensions, societies and their culture zones are aligned on the cultural map more clearly along a diagonal that reflects economic development; disturbances by culture zones appear much less pronounced.

Key words: cultural change, cultural map, revised theory of modernization, ML SEM

(multilevel structural equation modelling), values, value change

Word count: 8,020 (version accepted February 20th 2015).

WVR_08_02_Dulmer_Welzel_Inglehart.pdf [Download count:1335]

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Pitfalls in the Study of Democratization. Testing the Emancipatory Theory of Democracy
Volume 8 (1)
Welzel, C.; Inglehart, R.; Kruse, S.

Dahlum and Knutsen (2015) claim to disprove the emancipatory theory of democracy proposed by Inglehart and Welzel. This theory posits that rising emancipative values are a major force driving the emergence and flourishing of democracies. Dahlum and Knutsen believe to falsify this claim by running panel regressions over a time-pooled cross-sectional database. Contrary to their claims, our re-analysis demonstrates that this type of regression analysis is inherently incapable to capture co-evolutionary dynamics that follow a "tectonic tension/eruption" model: rising emancipative values bring mass demands for democratic freedoms into a slowly growing tension with stagnant supplies of them, until a point is reached at which eruptive regime changes shift the supplies into equlibrium with the demands. We present fresh evidence showing that reality strongly conforms to this model, whose logic is beyond the comprehension of panel regressions. We conclude that the evidence supports the emancipatory theory of democracy as powerfully as it did in Inglehart and Welzel’s (2005) original analyses.

Key words: emancipative values, democratic freedoms, democratization.

Word count: 5,000 without Appendix (version accepted February 15th 2015)


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Analyzing National Change in Citizen Secularism Across Four Time Periods in the World Values Surveys [Li, Liman Man Wai & Bond, Michael H.]
Clashing Values: Cultural and Geopolitical Transformations of Post-Cold War Europe [Akaliyski, P., Welzel, C.]
Context Matters - The Effect of National-Level Factors on the Relationship between Socio-Demographic Characteristics of Individuals on Their Life-Satisfaction [Eichhorn, J.]
Cultural Differences on Values about Conflict, War, and Peace [Díez-Nicolás, J.]
Does Individual Secularism Promote Life Satisfaction? The Moderating Role of Societal Development [Li, Liman Man Wai & Bond, Michael H.]
Dynamics of Cultural Change: The Human Development Perspective [Abdollahian, M., Coan, T., Oh, H., Yesilada, B.]
Economic Individualism and Government Spending [Arikan, G.]
Evidencing and Explaining Democratic Congruence: The Perspective of Substantive Democracy [Welzel, C., Klingemann, H.-D.]
Evolution, Empowerment and Emancipation [Welzel, C.]
Examining Environmental Concern in Developed, Transitioning and Developing Countries - A Cross-Country Test of the Objective Problems and the Subjective Values Explanations [Running, K.]
Forms of Civic Engagement and Corruption: Disentangling the Roles of Voluntary Associations, Elite challenging Mass Movements and the Type of Trust within Social Networks [Griesshaber, N.]
From Materialist to Postmaterialist Happiness? [Delhey, J.]
Generalizing Trust - How Outgroup-Trust Grows Beyond Ingroup-Trust [Delhey, J., Welzel, C.]
Human Empowerment before Prosperity and Liberty [Blackmore, S.; van Eyden, R.]
Islam and Patriarchy: How Robust is Muslim Support for Patriarchal Values? [Alexander, A.C. & Welzel, C.]
Mapping the Cooperative Landscape: Spatializing an Intangible Social Capital Variable [Witte, A.E., Tensaout, M.]
Measurement Equivalence? A Tale of False Obsessions and a Cure [Welzel, C., L. Brunkert, R. Inglehart & S. Kruse]
Measuring Effective Democracy: A Defense [Alexander, A.C., Inglehart, R. & Welzel, C.]
Measuring Effective Democracy: The Human Empowerment Approach [Welzel, C., Alexander A.C.]
Misconceptions of Measurement Equivalence: Time for a Paradigm Shift [Welzel, C.; Inglehart, R.]
Nationalism, Liberalism and Human Nature: What Mearsheimer Gets Wrong [WIECHNIK, S.]
Peace Through Integration or Peace Through Separation? [Reher, S.]
Pitfalls in the Study of Democratization. Testing the Emancipatory Theory of Democracy [Welzel, C.; Inglehart, R.; Kruse, S.]
Religiosity and Attitudes towards the Involvement of Religious Leaders in Politics [Mueller, T.]
Religious Regimes and Prospects for Liberal Politics: Futures of Iran, Iraq, and Saudi-Arabia [Moaddel, M.]
Testing the Revised Theory of Modernization: Measurement and Explanatory Aspects [Dülmer, H.; Inglehart, R.; Welzel, C.]
The Dynamics of Migrants’ Values and their Relations with Human Development (1981 – 2014) [PIER FRANCESCO DE MARIA]
The Power of the Family: New Data Reveal the Role of the Historical Family as the Instigator of Disparate and Lasting Developmental Trajectories [Szoltysek, M., Poniat, R.]
The Road to Progressive Political Institutions: Revisiting the Link between Education and Democracy [Peyper, C.; van Eyden, R.; Blackmore, S.]
Two Contradictory Hypotheses on Globalization: Societal Convergence or Civilizational Differentiation? [Diez-Nicolás, J.]
Unity, Plurality and/or Hybridity? Assessing the Global Pattern of Political Cultures [Schubert, S.]
Value Structures and Dimensions: Evidence from the German WVS [Held, M., Mueller, J., Deutsch, F., Grzechnik, E., Welzel C.]
Values, Repression, and Subversion [Zavadkaya M., Welzel C.]
World Values Survey Response and Behavior. Emancipative and Secular Values Predict Cooperation, Protection of Property and Pro-Social Behavior [Kistler, D.; Thöni, C.; Welzel, C.]