23 nov 2022

The Ronald F. Inglehart Honorary Lecture 2022

In 2022 the WVSA introduced The Ronald F. Inglehart Honorary Lecture to commemorate the memory and scientific legacy of the Founder of the World Values Survey Prof. Ronald F. Inglehart. The 2022 lecture was read by Prof. Russell J. Dalton. The lecture took place on Thursday, December 8, 2022 and was conducted over Zoom. Video and ppt slides are available.


Social Modernization and Political Tolerance in America: The Untold Story

According to pundits and some scholars, the American public is deeply split into rival camps that intensely dislike each other and their political views. Many liberals don’t understand conservatives and project their worst images on them; many conservatives act similarly. Social media can sometimes seem like a war zone. Political intolerance and extremism seem rife among Americans.

However, much of this reporting misses the larger reality that most Americans do not live at the political extremes. Analyzing support for political tolerance over time, public opinion trends point to what some will view as a surprising finding. In line with Inglehart’s social modernization theory, political tolerance has steadily increased over the past forty years, including during the early years of the Trump administration. This untold story suggests a reassessment of the American public and the potential for democratic renewal.

Professor Russell J. Dalton

Russell Dalton received his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan, with Ronald Inglehart supervising his dissertation. After two years doing international surveys for the U.S. government, Dalton joined the faculty at Florida State University, and after a decade he moved back home to California and the University of California, Irvine. His research focuses on the changing patterns of citizenship in the United States and other affluent democracies, and how these trends are reshaping the democratic process. 

Much of this research utilized the World Values Survey or the Eurobarometers that were products of Ronald Inglehart's institution building. Dalton has authored or edited more than thirty books and over 200 articles and book chapters. Several generations of college students learned about public opinion research through Dalton’s widely read Citizen PoliticsHis books have been published by Harvard University Press, Yale University Press, MIT Press, Cambridge University Press, and often by Oxford University Press. One of these books, The Civic Culture Transformed, co-edited with Christian Welzel, is a festschrift for Ron Inglehart and a celebration of the World Values Survey.

Inglehart_Lecture2022.pdf [Download count:118]


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