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SAMF-Fagkomiteen for samfunnsvitenskap

The European Values Study 2008: Extending a Data Base for Comparative Research

Tildelt: kr 2,5 mill.

The research questions can briefly be summarized. (i) From the very beginning the main emphasis of the Values Study was to study long term change and it is only now that data allow us to assess the main hypotheses on long term trends and patterns: Variati ons between national cultures, how religiously based civilizations differ, and trends towards convergence of national value systems. (ii) The next research issue is formed by questions related to values and violent conflicts. These concerns are primarily linked to events and societal developments that occurred after the project started; the emphasis of globalization and the fall of communism which lead to an interest in the study of democracy and democratization, as well as an emphasis on new causes of co nflict and war. Obviously, in the latter category, the clash of civilizations thesis (Huntington, 1993) is important, but also the question of the role of values for civil war. (iii) From research interests that have emerged from the democracy discussion is the question of good governance. We ask why some polities are more successful than others in governing and in establishing a civic morality. The question of good government can be extended to ask what constitutes the good society. (iv) Values Study da ta can shed important light on the cultural basis for political integration - in Europe and in the global community. The cultural basis for European integration has received increased attention with the expansion of EU eastwards and the current discussion of membership for Turkey. (v) The accumulation of data from EVS and WVS has stimulated a recent growth of multi-level research that integrates individual level models with models using contextual data at different levels. The present study will contribut e to this evolving research line. (vi) The Values study has contributed to a methodological development that unifies macro- and micro approaches and is also starting to provide important data to behavioral economics


SAMF-Fagkomiteen for samfunnsvitenskap