There are grave socio-economic inequalities among regions in the European Union, inter-regional disparities within countries are on the rise. The priject concentrates on an exploration of the social and political consequences of spatial inequality, which has been repeatedly described as a risk to social cohesion, a repository of social and political cleavages, and a source of perceived injustice and marginalization. This project contributes to the debates on the social and political consequences of interregional socio-economic inequalities by: (1) Empirical testing of important arguments of the debate about emerging geographies of discontent. In particular, we examine how inter-regional inequality contributes to individual-level socio-economic inequalities, how it is reflected in subjective perceptions of individual and community prospects and feelings of being left-behind, and how regional effects manifest in political opinions and electoral behavior. (2) Conducting an international comparison of the topic, which enables us to go beyond single-country studies and deliver a more nuanced analysis. (3) Focusing on three East-Central European countries where regional inequalities have grown in recent years and where populism plays an important role in their political arenas. (4) By using a mixed-method approach to the issue so as to both identify the measurable effects of spatial inequality and understand the perceptions and perspectives of people living in “left behind” places.
2023 - 2025
elections (and polls)