The literature on welfare state legitimacy generally views economic egalitarianism and support for the welfare state as closely related phenomena that can be measured by means of scales that are considered highly interchangeable. This research note argues that economic egalitarianism does not necessarily coincide with support for the welfare state. Moreover, our findings point out that, especially among those with the lowest levels of education, economic egalitarianism is related to anti-welfarism - a highly critical view of the welfare state. Based on an analysis of recent Dutch representative survey data (2006), this article aims to find out whether there are in fact two ideological dimensions - support for the welfare state and economic egalitarianism. Moreover, it is shown that both dimensions can be explained differently. Although both ideological dimensions are rooted in economic security, support for the welfare state also is rooted in feelings of anomie.,
Public Opinion Quarterly
Department of Sociology

Achterberg, P., Houtman, D., & Derks, A. (2011). Two of a kind? An empirical investigation of anti-welfarism and economic egalitarianism. Public Opinion Quarterly, 75(4), 748–760. doi:10.1093/poq/nfr034