Never Forget the First Time: The Persistent Effects of Corruption and the Rise of Populism in Italy

75 Pages Posted: 8 Nov 2018 Last revised: 1 Dec 2018

See all articles by Arnstein Aassve

Arnstein Aassve

Bocconi University - Department of Policy Analysis and Public Management

Gianmarco Daniele

Bocconi University; Baffi Carefin Centre, Bocconi University

Marco Le Moglie

Bocconi University

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: November 30, 2018

Abstract

The paper studies the long term impact of corruption on trust towards institutions. Previous studies have demonstrated that exposure to corruption may lower institutional trust in the short run. Whether those short term effects translate into a persistent effect is not known. We study the onset of a corruption shock that took place in Italy between 1992 and 1994. Using recent data from the Trustlab project, coordinated by the OECD, we find that young first time voters exposed to the corruption scandal still today, 25 years later, exert significantly lower institutional trust. A follow up survey reveals that their exposure to corruption also affected their current voting behavior and political preferences. In particular, those young first time voters exposed to the corruption were more likely to vote for populist parties at the 2018 national elections and to have less favourable attitudes towards immigrants and refugees.

Keywords: Corruption, Institutional trust, Populism, First-time voter, Italy

JEL Classification: H7, P16, D72, D73

Suggested Citation

Aassve, Arnstein and Daniele, Gianmarco and Le Moglie, Marco, Never Forget the First Time: The Persistent Effects of Corruption and the Rise of Populism in Italy (November 30, 2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3280498 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3280498

Arnstein Aassve

Bocconi University - Department of Policy Analysis and Public Management ( email )

Via Roentgen 1
Milan, 20136
Italy

Gianmarco Daniele (Contact Author)

Bocconi University ( email )

Baffi Carefin Centre, Bocconi University ( email )

Via Roentgen 1
Milan
Italy

Marco Le Moglie

Bocconi University ( email )

Via Roentgen 1
Milan, 20136
Italy

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