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Journal Article

Parental unemployment and young people's extreme right-wing party affinity: evidence from panel data


Publication date


The paper investigates the extent to which parental unemployment affects young people's far right-wing party affinity. Cross-sectional estimates from the German Socio-Economic Panel show a positive relationship between growing up with unemployed parents and support for the extreme right. The paper uses differences in parental unemployment experience during childhood across siblings to investigate a causal relationship. Sibling differences estimates suggest that young people who experience parental unemployment have a significantly higher chance of supporting extreme right-wing parties in Germany. The results show that the effect is particularly strong among East Germans, and stronger among sons than daughters. Moreover, the estimates point to a strong and positive effect of growing up in a single-parent family on young people's far right-wing party affinity, whereas household income appears to be an insignificant predictor.

Published in

Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A (Statistics in Society)

Volume and page numbers

174 , 737 -758



Politics, Young People, and Unemployment



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