286/2016 Tobias Rommel and Stefanie Walter
How does offshoring affect individual party preferences in multi-party systems? We argue that exposure to offshoring influences individual preferences for those political parties with clear policy positions on issues relevant for individuals with offshorable jobs (left, liberal and center-right parties), but does not affect voting decisions for parties concentrating on other issues (green parties or populist right parties). Examining individual-level data from five waves of the European Social Survey for 18 advanced democracies, we find that these effects vary by skill and exposure. Offshoring increases the preference for parties advocating economic openness among the highly skilled. In contrast, among the low-skilled, those exposed to offshoring are more likely to prefer leftist political parties that champion social protection and redistribution.
Comparative Political Studies