Support for the Democratic System

Dieter Fuchs, Giovanna Guidorossi and Palle Svensson

in Citizens and the State

Published in print September 1998 | ISBN: 9780198294733
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191599699 | DOI:

Series: Beliefs in Government

 Support for the Democratic System

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Presents an empirical test of the hypothesis that support for the democratic system is in decline, based on the Eurobarometer indicator of public satisfaction with democratic function. It begins with discussion of the concept of political support and its operationalization. The second part examines trends in political support in each country and across Western Europe as a whole. The third part compares levels of political support between Western European countries. Finally, the trend and level of political support in each country are considered in order to make a more accurate estimation of the state of democracy in these countries. The analysis shows quite clearly that there has been no legitimation problem in the Western European democracies, nor are there signs of any to come.

Keywords: democratic legitimation; Eurobarometer; public confidence; Western Europe

Chapter.  11017 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Comparative Politics

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