Title

How Do Multilateral Institutions Influence Individual Perceptions Of International Affairs? Evidence From Europe And Asia

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

12-1-2014

Published In

European Journal Of Development Research

Abstract

To date there has been no systematic study of the relationship between individuals' opinions of different institutions and their perceptions of world affairs. This article tries to fill this gap by using a large cross-country data set comprising nine EU members and seven Asian nations and instrumental variable bivariate probit regression analysis. Controlling for a host of factors, the article shows that individuals' confidence in multilateral institutions affects their perceptions of whether or not their country is being treated fairly in international affairs. This finding expands upon both theoretical work on multilateral institutions that has focused on state actors' rationale for engaging in multilateral cooperation and empirical work that has treated confidence in multilateral institutions as a dependent variable. The article also shows that individuals' confidence in different international organizations has undifferentiated effects on their perceptions of whether or not their country is being treated fairly in international affairs, though individuals more knowledgeable about international affairs exhibit slightly different attitudes. Finally, the article demonstrates significant differences in opinion across Europe and Asia.