Tallinn University of Technology

You are welcome to the Department of Economics and Finance research seminar "Family background effect on electoral participation and how schools can treat it?".

The seminar will take place on the 27th of March, from 16:00 to 17:00 in room SOC-413 and MS Teams platform (link).

Presenter: Kaire Põder (Estonian Business School)

Paper title: Family background effect on electoral participation and how schools can treat it?
Kaire Põder joint work with Triin Lauri (Tallinn University)


Education serves manifold roles within society. We contribute to research by focusing on the social dimension of education, which relates to political participation, democratic values, and attitudes. The problem's importance lies in civic outcomes exhibiting higher family background effects compared to other (PISA) disciplines. Our motivation is to find ways in schooling to correct the socioeconomic skew in civic knowledge and future political participation. We hypothesise that school participatory practices, such as good student-teacher relations and classroom openness to discussions, can not only have a positive treatment effect on student’s future electoral participation but also a compensating effect for low socioeconomic status. Utilising data from the International Civic and Citizenship Education Study (2022) derived from eight countries and featuring over 28,000 student-level observations, we employ causal graph (DAG) and weighting regression techniques with continuous treatment variables to avoid self-selection to treatment based on family socioeconomic status and gender. We show that in most countries treatment has socioeconomic and gender bias, especially regarding open classroom climate. Our findings indicate that the school effect is positive, i.e. school practices that improve students’ perceptions of the school participatory environment, and increase expected electoral participation. Also, both treatments capture the compensatory effect, i.e. close the gap between high- and low-SES students' outcomes in the expected electoral participation.

The public research seminars of the Department of Economics and Finance (DEF) at Tallinn University of Technology  usually take place on the second and fourth Wednesdays of the month in online format, unless announced otherwise. The seminar will last one hour, presentation will last approximately 45 minutes followed by 15 minutes of discussion. The seminars are held in English. Questions about the seminar can be sent to the seminar coordinator Natalia Levenko: natalia.levenko@taltech.ee.