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Department 1

Political Science


Do international shaming efforts affect citizens’ support for government policies? While it is a frequent claim in the literature that shaming works through domestic politics, we know little about how and when international criticism affects domestic public opinion. We address this question through an originally designed survey experiment in Sweden, which (i) compares the effects of international shaming in two issue areas—human rights and climate change, and (ii) tests whether government responses to criticism moderate the impact of shaming. Our main findings are fourfold. First, we find substantial effects of international shaming on domestic public opinion. These effects hold across both issue areas and irrespective of whether citizens support government parties or not. Second, human rights shaming has a stronger impact on citizens’ support for government policies than climate shaming. Third, shaming is most effective among citizens who are more supportive of climate action, human rights, and international cooperation. Finally, our findings are mixed with respect to the effect of government responses. While government responses do not moderate the effects of human rights shaming, they seem to mitigate the effects of climate shaming.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.