Farewell to the rightist self-employed? 'New self-employment' and political alignments

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Abstract

This study aims to provide theoretical and empirical clarity on whether people in “new” and precarious self-employment support the same political parties as those in traditional forms. Theoretical clarity is needed as the voting literature predominantly perceives self-employment in terms of class-based theories or insider/outsider theories, i.e., as a privileged grouping with shared interests as (potential) employers. Alternative perspectives, looking into the heterogeneity and precarization of self-employment have received less attention. Empirically, quantitative data are needed: Previous voting studies have not been able to differentiate the self-employed, either due to the lack of relevant indicators or because of low-N problems. Focusing on the Netherlands, this study addresses these shortcomings by analyzing data among over 800 self-employed without employees, using the Solo Self-Employment Panel. This study finds that the simple association between self-employment and rightist orientations is largely an oversimplification, and for growing segments of self-employment even a misrepresentation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)306-338
Number of pages33
JournalActa politica
Volume52
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2017

Keywords

  • IR-102642
  • METIS-319715

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