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Populist attitudes and climate change denial: On the roles of conservative values, anti-egalitarianism, xenophobia, and anti-political establishment attitudes
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1211-5150
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
2017 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Despite the extensive scientific evidence for human induced climate change, many still question or deny it. Previous research has shown that individuals who support right-wing populist parties tend to deny climate change to a higher degree than individuals supporting established parties. However, populism combines different views, and from the current state of knowledge it is unclear if these views uniquely correlate with climate change denial. Importantly, both populist discourses and rejection of climate science tend to include anti-establishment arguments, but it has been questioned if the true motivation behind them indeed lies in anti-establishmentarianism. For example, populism seems to be driven by xenophobic and anti-minority attitudes, and climate change denial has been connected to endorsement of group-based dominance. To improve our understanding of the populism-denial relation, the present study (N = 1588) tested the correlations between climate change denial and views commonly held by right-wing populists. Specifically, we investigated the effects of conservative values, anti-egalitarian attitudes (antifeminism and homophobia), xenophobia, and anti-political establishment attitudes on climate change denial. Positive zero-order correlations were found between all variables. Next, stepwise regression analysis revealed that conservative values, antifeminism, homophobia, and xenophobia have unique effects on denial, but anti-political establishment attitudes do not explain any unique variance in denial above the other included variables. Our results provide important insight about the potential motivations to dispute climate change among populist parties and their voters. Rather than reflecting anti-establishmentarianism per se, climate change denial seems to be driven by endorsement of traditional values and power structures.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017.
National Category
Psychology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-326173OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-326173DiVA: diva2:1119232
Conference
The 40th Annual Scientific Meeting of the International Society of Political Psychology
Available from: 2017-07-03 Created: 2017-07-03 Last updated: 2017-07-03

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
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  • asciidoc
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