Inflation aversion in the European Union: Exploring the myth of a North-South divide

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Our study seeks to put the assumptions of German Stability Culture to the test. The concept is a core legitimizing element of economic policy discourse in Germany and used regularly to juxtapose Germany and northern Europe and the euro area periphery. Using Eurobarometer surveys we construct a measurement for Stability Culture which is based on the priority assigned to the fight against inflation. Our empirical analysis covers the 2002 to 2010 timespan and includes 27 European Union Member States. Our results show that the distinction between northern states with an allegedly strong and southern states with an allegedly weak Stability Culture is a myth. Controlling for actual inflation, we find that the northern Member States with an allegedly high Stability Culture are less concerned with price stability than the rest of the EU.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)385–404
Number of pages20
JournalSocio-Economic Review
Issue number2
Early online date16 Sep 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2017


  • culture
  • Europe
  • Germany
  • socio-economics
  • z1

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