Are universities left-wing bastions? The political orientation of professors, professionals, and managers in Europe

24Citations
Citations of this article
54Readers
Mendeley users who have this article in their library.

This article is free to access.

Abstract

Universities are accused of being left-wing bastions, unwelcoming to conservative and right-wing professors. However, we know little about the political orientation of professors in comparison to other professionals, which would be the right comparison group if we want to know whether universities are potentially hostile environments to conservatives. Examining culturally and economically oriented political orientations in Europe, it is demonstrated that professors are more liberal and left-leaning than other professionals. However, there is no greater homogeneity of political orientations among the professoriate relative to other specific professions, suggesting that there is a diversity of opinions which is similar to what professionals would find in other occupations. One exception concerns attitudes towards immigration, on which professors have more liberal orientations and comparatively low residual variance around that more liberal mean. Importantly, the difference between professors and other professionals is not so clear within graduates from the social sciences, but emerges more clearly among graduates with a medical, STEM, economics or law degree. An important political cleavage exists between professionals and managers, a group of similar social standing.

Cite

CITATION STYLE

APA

van de Werfhorst, H. G. (2020). Are universities left-wing bastions? The political orientation of professors, professionals, and managers in Europe. British Journal of Sociology, 71(1), 47–73. https://doi.org/10.1111/1468-4446.12716

Register to see more suggestions

Mendeley helps you to discover research relevant for your work.

Already have an account?

Save time finding and organizing research with Mendeley

Sign up for free