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Economic determinants of citizens’ support for the European Union


  • Carlos Gama Nogueira

    () (Universidade do Minho - NIPE)

  • Linda Gonçalves Veiga

    () (Universidade do Minho - NIPE)


We investigate the determinants of public support for EU membership using a panel of fifteen countries over the 1974 - 2008 period. The results indicate that increases in inflation and unemployment rate generate a decrease in support for EU membership, while growth of GDP growth increases support. There is evidence of erosion in citizens’ support as time in the Union accumulates and when the country is under the excessive deficit procedure. Splitting the sample into different periods reveals that real economic variables were more influential in shaping citizens’ support for the EU than nominal variables during the first years of the Community, but inflation became the most relevant variable after implementation of the Treaty of the European Union.

Suggested Citation

  • Carlos Gama Nogueira & Linda Gonçalves Veiga, 2010. "Economic determinants of citizens’ support for the European Union," NIPE Working Papers 27/2010, NIPE - Universidade do Minho.
  • Handle: RePEc:nip:nipewp:27/2010

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    European integration; public support; economic performance; panel-data;

    JEL classification:

    • H1 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government
    • D7 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making
    • F0 - International Economics - - General

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