PhD ceremony: Mr. T. Toharudin, 13.15 uur, Academiegebouw, Broerstraat 5, Groningen
Thesis: Individualism, nationalism, ethnocentrism and authoritarianism evidence from Flanders by means of structural equation modeling
Promotor(s): prof. H Folmer
Faculty: Spatial Sciences
The relationships between individualism, nationalism, ethnocentrism and authoritarianism have been discussed amongst others in the political, philosophical and sociological literature. However, empirical analyses of their interdependencies are still scarce. That is why the main purpose of this thesis is to analyze empirically these interdependencies on the basis of the General Election Study for Belgium in 1991, 1995 and 1999.
For that purpose the author uses a continuous time model estimated by means of a structural equation modeling (SEM) approach. The reason for continuous time modeling is that socio-economic processes such as the development of political preferences, are the outcomes of large numbers of decisions taken by large numbers of different actors at different points in time. This basic feature gives rise to continuously evolving socio-economic dynamics rather than to processes that change at specific discrete points in time only. The effects found in discrete time in fact are part of an ongoing process. Particularly, equality at a single point in time may be consistent with quite different auto- or cross-lagged effect functions across time.
The reason for using SEM is to account for measurement errors and to handle unobserved variables. Individualism, nationalism, ethnocentrism and authoritarianism are unobserved latent variables that can only be measured by means of observed variables. Toharudin found a positive reciprocal relationship between authoritarianism and ethnocentrism. The relationship from authoritarianism to individualism is positive instead of negative.There is a positive effect from from ethnocentrism to individualism and vice versa. Finally, there are positive impacts from individualism and ethnocentrism on nationalism.
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