Type of Thesis
The existence of political interest in society is critical for the health and future of all democracies and countries aspiring to become democracies. Likewise, a populace having the ability and willingness to participate in politics is crucial for a healthy society. An interest in politics and a desire to participate are not the same thing as actually being able to participate. Currently, there is a lack of literature which examines these phenomena on a country level. This study will examine the role that country level variables play in determining the propensity for a society to engage in political action and its interest level in politics. These relationships will be tested using graphical and statistical methods. I find several interesting relationships between my dependent and independent variables, which help explain why some countries are more interested/participatory than others, as well as provide avenues for additional research.
Principally, I conclude that the primary country level variable affecting the level of interest in politics within a country to be average wealth. I also find that multiple country level variables correlate significantly with the propensity to engage in political action, including: Education, income, democracy, press freedom, corruption and infrastructure. I consider corruption to be the most pervasive problem for a country as a whole, and I will delve more deeply into this relationship. Finally, I conclude that country level variables affect political interest and the willingness to engage in political action differently.
shapland, cecil, "Explaining Variations in Political Interest and Participation Amongst Countries: A Cross-National Comparison" (2015). Undergraduate Honors Theses. 869.