ZEW - Centre for European Economic Research

07/19/2019 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 07/19/2019 06:40

ZEW Honours Up-and-Coming Researchers for Their Work on Populism

For the purpose of their study, Christian Ochsner and Felix Roesel compiled and digitised historical data on the sieges to compare the FPÖ's electoral success in municipalities that had been under siege with those that had not been besieged. They were able to establish a causal relationship on the basis of numerous tests. In addition, the authors also found that the electoral campaign of the populist party gave rise to anti-Turkish sentiments, and that Turkish citizens were likely to leave the respective municipalities.

'Understanding populism is also key to understand the emergence of often seemingly irrational economic policy. This work is of great significance because it provides evidence of how historical events, which, in theory, have no relevance for today, can be misused by populist parties,' said Professor Friedrich Heinemann, head of the ZEW Research Department 'Corporate Taxation and Public Finance', explaining the jury's decision. 'The empirical findings show how these campaigns can fuel animosities between different demographic groups. They also highlight the political and economic importance of understanding and reflecting historical events in order to ensure peaceful coexistence in Europe.'