Because the ongoing rise of homelessness in the Netherlands can objectively be laid down as an alarming trend - harmful to both the individual and society on all kinds of social and economic dimensions - the political inaction seems rather puzzling. Informed by political science theory, this study went to explore a range of possible social values, beliefs and etiological logics embedded in society that might explain why the public has refrained from outcry. This study has aimed to generate new insights on these individual level factors and their possible relation to the key variables of interest: concern for the issue, perceived urgency, support for political action and the causal attribution of homelessness. A survey was designed and distributed online to gather quantitative data on these specific concepts (N = 1172). After multiple hierarchical regression analyses, it was evident that a) causal attribution of homelessness is influenced by belief in meritocracy and concern for economic inequality, b) concern for the issue can in part be explained by considering the level of exposure, causal attribution of homelessness and concern for economic inequality, c) favoring political action is dependent on the level of concern for the issue and its causal attribution, and d) concern for the issue and support for political action both determine the issue's relative placement on the political agenda.

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Sjaak Braster, Jonathan Mijs
Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences

de Greef, H. (2021, August). What Does it Take to Be Less Ruthless on The Roofless? A study on causal attribution of and concern for homelessness in the Netherlands. Sociology. Retrieved from