Conference Programme 2015

Conference floor plans and map
Tuesday 14th July      Wednesday 15th July      Thursday 16th July      Friday 17th July     


Wednesday 15th July, 09:00 - 10:30 Room: L-101

Global Societal Change

Convenor Dr Tom W. Smith (NORC at the University of Chicago )

Session Details

This session examines societal change using major cross-national datasets such as the Comparative Study of Electoral Systems, the East Asian Social Survey, the European Social Survey, the International Social Survey Program, and the World Values Survey. Special focus is on the 1) impact of globalization on attitudes and behaviors across countries, 2) whether there are signs of convergence, and 3) the role of cohort turnover in shaping global societal change.

Paper Details

1. Democratic Development and Changes in Political Efficacy: Latin America in Comparative Perspective
Dr Alejandro Moreno (Instituto Tecnologico Autonomo de Mexico)

Does political efficacy increase as countries develop and consolidate democracy? Latin America’s recent experiences of democratization and re-democratization have been analyzed from many different perspectives, focusing on the problems of democratic consolidation, democratic governance, the quality of democracy, and democratic legitimacy. However, few studies have focused on the public’s perceptions of whether democracy has empowered them or not. Has democratization expanded the sense of empowerment among mass publics? Based on Latinobarometer data, In this paper I analyze the sense of political efficacy (internal and external) as an indicator of citizen empowerment.


2. Public Attitudes towards Homosexuality and Gay/Lesbian Rights in Comparative and Temporal Perspective
Dr Tom W. Smith (NORC)

The position of gays/lesbians in societies and the legal status of homosexuality have undergone notable changes in recent decades. In some countries, attitudes have become much more supportive of gay/lesbian rights and more accepting of homosexuality. Collective behaviors and the legal status and rights of gays/lesbians have also expanded.
This research examines 1) the global trends and how changes vary across countries, 2) cross-national differences in support of homosexuality and country-level factors explaining the cross-national variation, 3) demographic correlates of support for homosexuality, 4) the impact of cohort differences, and 5) the combined role



3. Convergence or Divergence of Asian Family Values and Practices: A Comparative Study Based on EASS 2006 and Other Replicated Surveys
Professor Hachiro Iwai (Kyoto University)
Professor Noriko Iwai (JGSS Research Center, Osaka University of Commerce)

Are Asian family values and practices converging? Under the East Asian family-oriented value system, women were expected to stay at home and take care of other family members after marriage. Using EASS 2006 and other replicated surveys, this paper attempts to clarify the impacts of women’s higher education on gender-role attitudes and the gendered division of domestic chores in Asian societies. The rapid expansion of women’s higher education leads to changes in the attitudes toward traditional gender roles. However, it is also evident that changes in attitudes do not correspond to everyday domestic practices in Asian


4. TOWARDS A COMMON PATTERN OF RELIGIOUS CHANGE. CHURCH ATTENDANCE DECLINING TRENDS IN SEVENTEEN WESTERN EUROPEAN COUNTRIES (1973-2013)
Mr Ferruccio Biolcati Rinaldi (University of Milan)
Mr Cristiano Vezzoni (University of Trento)

In this paper, we deal with the problem of religious change concentrating on religious practice, analysing the trend of church attendance by means of survey data in 17 Western European countries from 1970s to present. The analyses of the individual data are based on a pooled dataset of repeated cross-sectional studies: Eurobarometer, ESS, EVS/WVS, ISSP. The first results give support to the hypothesis of the overall decline of church attendance. Moreover, a common pattern of religious change seems to emerge for Western Europe, with faster decline where religious practice is still at high levels (with partial exception of