Publication details

The Chicken or Egg Question of Adolescents’ Political Involvement : Longitudinal Analysis of the Relation Between Young People’s Political Participation, Political Efficacy, and Interest in Politics

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Year of publication 2017
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source Zeitschrift für Psychologie
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Social Studies

Field Psychology
Keywords political participation; internal political efficacy; external political efficacy; political interest; adolescence
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Description Research on the political behavior of young people often approaches psychological factors such as political efficacy or interest as antecedents of political participation. This study examines whether efficacy and interest are also outcomes of participation and if this effect differs across three types of political participation. Data from a two-wave longitudinal survey of 768 Czech adolescents (aged 14–17 years at Time 1, 54% females) was used. Findings support the proposition that psychological factors are affected by participatory experiences. Cross-lagged models showed longitudinal effects from participation to changes in psychological factors, but not effects in the opposite direction. Protest participation predicted higher interest and internal political efficacy, but lower external political efficacy, volunteering predicted higher external political efficacy, and representational participation had no effects on psychological factors. Overall, our findings point out the formative role of participatory experiences in adolescence and the diverse effects of different types of political participation on political development.
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