A Dialogue between a Populist and an Economist

11 Pages Posted: 6 Mar 2018

See all articles by Tito Boeri

Tito Boeri

Bocconi University - Department of Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Prachi Mishra

Government of India - Reserve Bank of India

Chris Papageorgiou

International Monetary Fund (IMF) - Research Department

Antonio Spilimbergo

International Monetary Fund (IMF) - Research Department; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); University of Michigan at Ann Arbor - The William Davidson Institute

Date Written: February 2018

Abstract

In this imaginary dialogue, a populist and an economist discuss the role of economic shocks to explain populism. A simple correlation between economic shocks and populism is weak. However, economic shocks can explain well the phenomenon of populism in countries with low pre-existent level of trust. This is confirmed both at the macro cross-country level and also by micro evidence obtained from surveys. Finally, this finding is consistent with the "ideational approach" in political science, which emphasizes how the populist narrative opposes the "corrupt elite" to the "virtuous people."

Keywords: Europe, Political parties, populism

JEL Classification: A10, A12

Suggested Citation

Boeri, Tito and Mishra, Prachi and Papageorgiou, Chris and Spilimbergo, Antonio, A Dialogue between a Populist and an Economist (February 2018). CEPR Discussion Paper No. DP12763. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3134414

Tito Boeri (Contact Author)

Bocconi University - Department of Economics ( email )

Via Gobbi 5
Milan, 20136
Italy

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) ( email )

London
United Kingdom

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Prachi Mishra

Government of India - Reserve Bank of India ( email )

Bakery Junction Service Road
Vazhuthacaud
Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala 695033
India

Chris Papageorgiou

International Monetary Fund (IMF) - Research Department ( email )

700 19th Street NW
Washington, DC 20431
United States

Antonio Spilimbergo

International Monetary Fund (IMF) - Research Department ( email )

700 19th Street NW
Washington, DC 20431
United States
202-623-6346 (Phone)
202-623-6336 (Fax)

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

University of Michigan at Ann Arbor - The William Davidson Institute ( email )

724 E. University Ave.
Wyly Hall
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1234
United States

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