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Academic, vocational or general? An analysis of public opinion towards education policies with evidence from a new comparative survey


Busemeyer, Marius R; Garritzmann, Julian L (2017). Academic, vocational or general? An analysis of public opinion towards education policies with evidence from a new comparative survey. Journal of European Social Policy, 27(4):373-386.

Abstract

Education policy is a salient topic both in political debates and in the scholarly literature. Still, the study of individual policy preferences on education policy has received little scholarly attention, mostly because existing comparative surveys provide only very crude measures on education policy. To address this research gap, we conducted a representative survey of public opinion on the details of education policy in eight Western European countries. This article, first, presents analyses of these data, focusing on people’s preferences for public expenditure on education relative to other social policies as well as its distribution across different education sectors (early childhood and pre-primary education, general schools, vocational education and training, and higher education). In contrast to existing surveys, our survey forces citizens to prioritize between different policy areas and education sectors. We investigate determinants of individual preferences, focusing particularly on self-interest, ideological norms and institutional feedback effects. We find that individual educational background, partisan ideology and having children are significantly associated with variation in preferences. Furthermore, we find tentative evidence for self-undermining institutional feedback effects.

Abstract

Education policy is a salient topic both in political debates and in the scholarly literature. Still, the study of individual policy preferences on education policy has received little scholarly attention, mostly because existing comparative surveys provide only very crude measures on education policy. To address this research gap, we conducted a representative survey of public opinion on the details of education policy in eight Western European countries. This article, first, presents analyses of these data, focusing on people’s preferences for public expenditure on education relative to other social policies as well as its distribution across different education sectors (early childhood and pre-primary education, general schools, vocational education and training, and higher education). In contrast to existing surveys, our survey forces citizens to prioritize between different policy areas and education sectors. We investigate determinants of individual preferences, focusing particularly on self-interest, ideological norms and institutional feedback effects. We find that individual educational background, partisan ideology and having children are significantly associated with variation in preferences. Furthermore, we find tentative evidence for self-undermining institutional feedback effects.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Political Science
Dewey Decimal Classification:320 Political science
Uncontrolled Keywords:Education policy, INVEDUC survey, policy preferences, public opinion, welfare state research
Language:English
Date:October 2017
Deposited On:29 Nov 2017 11:35
Last Modified:19 Feb 2018 09:26
Publisher:Sage Publications Ltd.
ISSN:0958-9287
OA Status:Green
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1177/0958928717728713
Official URL:http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/0958928717728713
Related URLs:http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/0958928717728713 (Publisher)

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