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Individuals' Socioeconomic Position, Inequality Perceptions, and Redistributive Preferences

Resource Type
Dataset : survey data
  • Choi, Gwangeun (University of Essex)
Publication Date
Free Keywords
redistributive preferences; Meltzer-Richard model; objective income position; objective social position; perceived social position; perceived injustice; perceived actual inequality; personal norms of inequality
  • Abstract

    The standard model of redistribution posits that attitudes towards redistribution are driven by pure economic self-interest, such as current income. From a social-psychological perspective, however, subjective social status, apart from objective income or social status, is also closely associated with policy preferences. This inquiry directly compares these two different approaches and further explores the role of individuals’ inequality perceptions, including personal norms of inequality to which researchers have paid little attention so far, in shaping individuals’ preferences for redistribution. The current evidence shows that the explanatory power of objective income position is not stronger than that of subjective social position in determining redistributive preferences, while objective social position, which is a summary measure of income, education, and occupation, is more strongly associated with the preferences than perceived social position. The results also demonstrate that individuals’ inequality norms play a more crucial role in the preference formation than does their perceptions of actual inequality. These new findings contribute to redistributive politics and behavioural economics on other-regarding preferences, first, by rebutting a determining role of objective income position in shaping redistributive preferences, as opposed to the assumption of the conventional redistribution hypothesis; second, by providing the empirical evidence of the importance of social preferences outside the field of experimental studies.
Temporal Coverage
  • 1987-01-01 / 2009-12-31
    Time Period: Thu Jan 01 00:00:00 EST 1987--Thu Dec 31 00:00:00 EST 2009
Geographic Coverage
  • global
Sampled Universe
31 OECD countriesSmallest Geographic Unit: country
  • Is previous version of
    DOI: 10.3886/E101258V4

Update Metadata: 2019-11-10 | Issue Number: 3 | Registration Date: 2019-11-07

Choi, Gwangeun (2019): Individuals' Socioeconomic Position, Inequality Perceptions, and Redistributive Preferences. Version: 3. ICPSR - Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research. Dataset.