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Postmaterialist and Economic Voting in Australia, 1990-98


Western, M and Tranter, BK, Postmaterialist and Economic Voting in Australia, 1990-98, Australian Journal of Political Science, 36, (3) pp. 439-458. ISSN 1036-1146 (2001) [Refereed Article]

DOI: doi:10.1080/10361140120100659


Recent research in Australian sociology and political science has debated the extent to which postmaterialist values and economic self-interest shape voting in federal elections. Some researchers have argued that postmaterialist values have partly displaced materialist concerns with physical security and economic well-being in Australian public life. This displacement, coupled with the adoption by major political parties of postmaterialist 'quality of life' issues such as the environment, has meant that voting in Australia has come to be more dependent on postmaterialist values than on perceptions of economic interest. Other research, however, has found no relationship between postmaterialist values and voting behaviour, while economic evaluations remain a strong determinant of voting behaviour. Part of the disagreement reflects methodological differences in the research. But different methodological problems compromise each of the previous studies. In this paper we use data from the 1990, 1993, 1996 and 1998 Australian Election Studies to investigate postmaterialist and economic voting in the Commonwealth House of Representatives and the Senate. Using various statistical methods, we first explore bivariate relationships between key variables and then use multivariate models of postmaterialist and economic voting to adjudicate between the contending positions.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Human Society
Research Group:Political science
Research Field:Political science not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Law, Politics and Community Services
Objective Group:Government and politics
Objective Field:Government and politics not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Tranter, BK (Professor Bruce Tranter)
ID Code:21704
Year Published:2001
Web of Science® Times Cited:16
Deposited By:Sociology and Social Work
Deposited On:2001-08-01
Last Modified:2002-05-21

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