civic societies

**update below.**

in “Making Democracy Work: Civic Traditions in Modern Italy,” putnam, et. al., measured the civic-ness of italians (north and south) by looking at how many people in each region belonged to voluntary associations — charity groups, lions clubs, hiking clubs, etc., etc.

such questions were asked in the 2005-08 wave of the world values survey:

“Now I am going to read out a list of voluntary organizations; for each one, could you tell me whether you are a member, an active member, an inactive member or not a member of that type of organization?

– Church or religious organization
– Sport or recreation organization
– Art, music or educational organization
– Labour union
– Political party
– Environmental organization
– Professional association
– Charitable organization
– Any other voluntary organization”

here’s the data for a whole bunch of countries: the anglo-world, the french + the germanics (i never know what to do with the french!), southern europe, eastern europe, the muslim world (well, middle east + maghreb), and east/southeast asia. haven’t done africa or latin america yet. i’ve only included the percentages of respondents who said they were active members. (yes, some of the data is prolly skewed ’cause of large-ish immigrant populations in some countries.)

first, the averages for each region. sports really is the new religion:

the anglo world — most civic. i’ve highlighted the u.s. just ’cause i’m an americun:

western europe, i.e. the french and a bunch of the germanics. pretty civic, especially the swiss:

southern europe – italy not very civic. but we already knew that:

eastern europe – not very civic at all. but the finns don’t really belong there – they’re pretty civic:

east and southeast asians? more civic than eastern europeans on average. go indonesia!:

muslim countries (middle east + maghreb)? civics FAIL. iranians (prolly persians) make a decent showing:

update 11/26: here are the tables for africa, latin america, and india (all on its lonesome). i’m impressed with the figures for the african nations surveyed — pretty gosh-durned civic! kudos to them for giving a f*ck. i thought mali was pretty interesting — they also scored high on a couple of the trust questions:

the latin americans — kinda average, really. i highlighted mexico ’cause we got a lot o’ mexicans in the u.s. their scores are quite respectable really:

all i’ve got for south asia is india. indians are all about politics, apparently (right after religion):

another update 11/26: see also civic societies ii

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good civicness vs. bad civicness

from Civic Engagement and Corruption in 20 European Democracies: Separating the Bright from the Dark Side? [pdf] i learn that there is GOOD (inclusive) civicness and there is BAD (exclusive) civicness [pg. 65]:

“The idea underlying the inclusive/exclusive networks distinction then is that groups focusing on individual-oriented goods such as personal materials, status or group identity goods are more likely to generate exclusiveness.”

the problem is that studies have shown that, while the inclusive networks are associated with lower corruption in any given society, “involvement with the latter [exclusive networks] actually shows the reverse tendency” [pg. 73].

oh dear.

inclusive civicness networks include: sport / outdoor hobby groups; cultural organizations; humanitarian organizations / charities; environmental groups; church / religious organizations; political parties; and science / education / youth groups.

exclusive civicness networks include: trade unions; business / professional / farmer organizations; consumer / auto groups; and social clubs / young / elderly / women.

i like to think of them as group-oriented vs. more personally-oriented groups (see what i mean?).

looking back on a previous post on civicness patterns around the world, we see that this does seem to fit:

– the anglo world, which is known for being not-sooo-corrupt, has relatively low participation rates in labor unions (10.1%) — exclusive civicness networks — compared to very high participation rates in inclusive civicness networks like humanitarian organizations/charities (19.8%) or sports groups (28.5%);

– meanwhile, eastern europe, which is known for being pretty-durned-corrupt, has relatively high participation rates in labor unions (5.1%) compared to low participation rates in humanitarian organizations/charities (2.7%) or sports groups (7.1%) (kinda);

– same holds true for india — relatively high participation rates in labor unions (15.7%) versus comparatively lower participation rates in humanitarian organizations/charities (10.8%) or sports groups (15.9%) — and also pretty corrupt.

and looking at civicness amongst the races in the u.s.:

– whites have a relatively low participation rates in labor unions (7%), with pretty high participation rates in humanitarian organizations/charities (16.5%) and sports groups (17.1%).

– both blacks and hispanics have relatively high participation rates in labor unions (10.3% and 8.6% respectively), with comparatively low participation rates in humanitarian organizations/charities (11.7% and 6.8%) and sports groups (14.9% [kinda] and 8.6%).

this pattern is definitely something i’ll be keeping a look out for in future posts on civicness!

see also: “Applying the concepts of bonding and bridging social capital to empirical research” by sonja zmerli, 2003, european political science 2(3).

previously: civic societies and civic societies ii

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civicness in france by region

here are the results of the world values survey‘s civicness questions for france (2006) by region.

these data cover whites in france only. i’m pretty sure that doesn’t include north africans (berbers/arabs from algeria, for instance) because literally just a couple of the white respondents said they were muslims. so these data should really represent mostly ethnic french folks, with maybe some other europeans thrown in here and there. unlike in the post for spain, the samples sizes for all the (NUTS) regions of france were 50+. the pale yellow highlights indicate the region that had the highest score for a particular question (click on charts for LARGER views):

here’s a map of the average civicness scores for each region. note that, while the color scheme here is the same one i used on the map of spain, the scale is different. for instance, the least civic region in france (paris) is more civic than the most civic region in spain (catalonia):

the first thing to notice is that the civicness scores for ethnic french folks are lower than those of the anglo world across the board — often a lot lower. the french scores are lower than those of great britain (which i haven’t broken down by region/ethnicity yet — you’re next, g.b.!) — and, except for membership in a sport/recreation organization, lower than those for white americans. for example, in 2006, 17.10% of white americans said they were active members of a political party, while only 2.60% of whites in france said so.

wrt the flatlanders vs. mountain people theory, it looks to me as though the mountain dwellers of france, all of whom have a recent history of close matingthe auvergnats, those in alpine regions, and populations in the east, like in parts of lorraine — prove to be true to form in being less civic than the more lowland regions further to the west:

the most civic region of france — “paris east” (captain picardy, champagne-ardenne, and burgundy) — apart from being something of a lowland region, also appears to have been a part of early medieval austrasia. the population of this area is, therefore, likely, due to the “invention” of manorialism in this region, to have had one of the longest histories of outbreeding/nuclear family structures in nw europe. (however, as charles donahue has shown, during the medieval period, the people of this region practiced arranged marriages much more often than in england during the same time period, so marriage wasn’t quite as “free” historically in this region as amongst the english.)

the least civic region of france is paris — but, of course, paris is a thoroughly multi-cultural city, and so its residents probably suffer from putnam’s lack of trust [opens pdf] that arises naturally in diverse societies.

the next least civic region of france is nord-pas-de-calais which is also multi-cultural in its own way being comprised historically of both french and flemish speakers. (there are also, apparently, a lot of other europeans, and more recent immigrants from africa/latin america, living in the region.) again, diversity does not normally make for civic societies.

it might also be that the french flemings, like their distant neighbors/cousins(?) the frisians, had a longer history of inbreeding than other populations in northern france. i’m not sure about that since i don’t have any mating info on the french flemings — and i don’t know, either, what sort of territory they traditionally occupied (was it swampy like the frisians? and did they, therefore, miss out on manorialism like the frisians?).

oh — and remember how french canadians don’t seem to be very civic or trusting/charitable compared to anglo-canadians? well, isn’t it interesting that the same holds true for french people in france vs. anglos? and remember where in france most of the ancestors of french canadians hailed from? — the area outlined in red on this map? that is smack in the middle of a slightly upland, not-so-very civic region in france today: “paris west” at 8.93%.

previously: civic societies and civicness in the u.s. by race and the flatlanders vs. the mountain people and meanwhile, in france… and the auvergnat pashtuns and medieval manoralism and the hajnal line and “l’explication de l’idéologie” and more on medieval england and france and what’s up with french candians? and canadiens and canadiens again

(note: comments do not require an email. frenchman.)

civicness in spain by region

here are the results for the world values survey‘s civicness questions for spain (2007) by region.

i couldn’t sort the results by ethnic group (don’t think they asked that of the people in spain), but i think the vast, vast majority of them must be ethnic spaniards since nearly all of the respondents were roman catholic (and not muslim or something like that). i skipped any region that didn’t have at least 50 respondents. the pale yellow highlights indicate the region that had the highest score for a particular question (click on charts for LARGER view):

i made a map of the regional averages for all these civicness scores. darker shades mean more civicness, lighter shades less. white means not enough data available for those regions. here’s a map with the names of the regions of spain if you don’t know them off the top of your head. (~_^) galicia, btw, should be a lighter shade than the basque region, but that might not be so clear on my map. catalonia ftw! (~_^):

the civicness scores for spain are, across the board, much lower than those we find anywhere in the anglo world including the u.s. it’s hard to tell if there’s a north-south and/or east-west civicness divide in spain because there’s no data for so many of the regions; but it is interesting, i think, that the most southern and most western regions (andalusia and galicia) have such low scores while catalonia in the northeast and madrid have the highest scores. andalusia has had a long history of close marriages, and i suspect the galicians, too, but i’ll have to get back to you on that.

i also think it’s interesting that andalusia and galicia are two of the regions from which many of the spanish settlers in mexico originated — and, as we saw the other day, whites in mexico have some of the lowest civicness scores in that country, relatively speaking. mexico, however, generally has higher civicness scores than spain. go figure.

previously: civic societies and civicness in mexico and la endogamia en la españa medieval and northern vs. southern spanish iq, redux

(note: comments do not require an email. tower house in galicia.)

civicness in mexico

well, this is interesting. checking the world values survey for the “civicness” questions results for mexico (2005), it seems that, in mexico, the most civic people are those that are more indio, while whites are generally the least civic. it’s not the strongest of patterns, but i do think it’s there.

the sample sizes for the “indigenous” group are too small, but i included them anyway ’cause they’re such an interesting group. keep in mind when looking at the table and graphs, though, that the numbers for that group are prolly not representative. still, they do seem to fall in line with the general pattern of: more indio=more civic >> less indio=less civic.

here’s a table for ya (click on image for LARGER view):

the average scores for mexico in total are lower than those for white americans in all of the categories except for church going and sport/recreation (gooooaaaallll!). the number of active members of labor unions is slightly higher in mexico than amongst white americans. the number of active members in a political party amongst whites in the u.s is almost double that of mexicans. (mexicans are more active in political parties than the chinese in vancouver, though!)

similarly, the average scores for whites in mexico are generally lower than those for white americans except, again, for church going and sport/recreation. again, the number of active members in a political party amongst whites in the u.s. is almost double that of whites in mexico. the art/music/education scores in the two groups are pretty close.

if the internet is telling the truth, most of the early spanish settlers in mexico came from andalusia and extremadura, which were both, of course, a part of al-andalus in the medieval period during which time the local population picked up on the cousin-marrying practices of the arab conquerers — at least in andalusia they did anyway. in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, spanish immigrants to the new world came from places like galicia and asturias. not sure what the long-term mating practices in those places have been, but i suspect a history of close marriages in galicia. don’t quote me on that though. the point being that, in general, the spanish settlers in mexico didn’t have the outbreeding history of the anglos further north in the americas.

hispanics in the u.s. — who are not all mexicans, of course — score higher than mexicans on being active members in: church/religious organizations, labor unions and, mostly notably, political parties (12.40% for hispanics in the u.s. versus 9.70% in mexico). the rest of the scores are lower for hispanics in the u.s. than for mexicans in mexico. i’ll have to try to see if i can work out the scores for the different hispanic groups in the u.s. (mexican vs. puerto rican for instance).

enough talk. here are some charts comparing the civicness of the different groups in mexico. i threw in white americans, too, to make it interesting (click on graphs for LARGER views):

previously: civic societies and civic societies ii and civicness in the u.s. by race and la endogamia en la españa medieval

(note: comments do not require an email. gene autry.)

canadiens again

i decided to look at the “civicness” numbers for canadians by province in the world values survey (2006 wave for canada). these are the questions i looked at:

“Now I am going to read out a list of voluntary organizations; for each one, could you tell me whether you are a member, an active member, an inactive member or not a member of that type of organization?

– Church or religious organization
– Sport or recreation organization
– Art, music or educational organization
– Labour union
– Political party
– Environmental organization
– Professional association
– Charitable/humanitarian organization”

for each province, i broke down the numbers for active members only by size of town where the interview was conducted (see x-axis on chart below). what i was trying to get around was françois’ montreal problem — i.e. that the civicness numbers for quebec might be so low because of the presence of multi-culti montreal. (i’ve already shown, though, that ontarians don’t seem to have much of a problem with the presence of multi-culti toronto in their province.)

so, now that i’ve got some numbers for small town quebec (and other provinces) we can ask: are the québécois who don’t live in montreal more civic than their counterparts who do live in montreal, and are they more or less civic than other canadians?

before i try to answer that, let me say that there are lots — LOTS — of problems with this data set, so take this whole post with a big block of freshly mined salt. for one thing, the sample sizes for some of the provinces were so small, i just had to skip them entirely (egs. prince edward island – n=7; newfoundland – n=37). also, some of the data that i did use aren’t so hot either — example: sample size for quebec towns sized 50,000-100,000 – n=10. but, hey — what’s an hbd chick to do?

also, i couldn’t filter out the responses of non-white canadians, so the numbers for quebec do not represent just ethnic québécois. same story for the other provinces. however, 87% of the respondents from canada on the 2006 wvs were white, so we are looking at a strong majority of white canadians here.

so when you look at the chart below — squint!

without further ado, here are the average “civicness” scores by town size for quebec, ontario and alberta (click on graph for LARGER, not-so-fuzzy view):

as you can see, the civicness in small town quebec looks to be ’round about the same as in ontario or alberta — maybe/probably. living in a small-ish town in any of these places would probably feel pretty similar, civicness-wise. the scores do diverge, though, the larger the town/city size, until the difference is ca. twelve points when we get to the largest cities. perhaps that’s due to the multi-cultural nature of the largest cities, but then why are ontario’s numbers so high when they’ve got one of the most vibrant cities on the planet?

no. my guess — and this is just a guess — is that civicness in small-town quebec works quite well because french canadians have a good dose of “genes for familial altruism” (whatever they might be), either thanks to their french ancestors and/or because of the bottleneck and subsequent inbreeding that the population experienced once in the new world, and in small-town quebec they’re still living quite near extended family members, so they’re all quite civic. however, for the very same reason, civicness fails (compared to anglo-canadians) in urban quebec when they’re presented with lots of non-relatives. in contrast, anglo-canadian civicness scores get even better when they get out there in the Big World amongst other individualists like themselves.

the extended family was extremely important for a large part of quebec’s history, which rings familial altruism bells for me. i think that the good folks of quebec are some of my inbreeders — and that’s why they’re not very trusting (of outsiders) and not very civic when they get around different sorts of folks (like in big cities).

oh, and — death to america!

previously: canadiens and what’s up with french canadians? and civic societies

(note: comments do not require an email. québécois family.)


i referenced an article last week which claimed that, out of all the provinces in canada, quebec has the most corruption. i wondered out loud what the story was with french canadians, but françois objected saying that the problem is not (only?) the french canadians in quebec, but rather multicultural montreal inflating the corruption numbers for quebec on the whole. he pointed out that montreal has its share of italian mafioso types, for instance. certainly, as we all know, italians are no strangers to corruption and nepotism, and so it might, indeed, be a problem for montreal — and quebec — that seven percent of montreal’s inhabitants have an italian background. not to mention, like i already said, the general multicultiness of montreal. that doesn’t ever seem to lead to less corruption (unless you have an unbelievably wise leader).

still, i wondered if françois was right and that, if you took montreal out of the mix, that quebec wouldn’t look any more corrupt than, say, saskatchewan. so i looked around for corruption data for canada broken down by province and came up with…

…nada. (mind you, i didn’t really look all that hard, so it might be out there somewhere on the innerwebs.)

what i did find, however, are some neat data on the civic behaviors of canadians by province: things like amount of time spent volunteering, donations, and trust in others, etc.

before i present some of that data, i want to make it clear that complaining that canadians aren’t civic enough would be like complaining that germans don’t like beer enough — totally nonsensical! by any sort of metric that you look at — transparency international’s corruption perceptions index (canada was number 10 in 2011) or the world values survey civicness numbers — canadians are a very civic bunch. living anywhere in canada — quebec included — would obviously NOT feel like living anywhere in eastern europe or the arab world.

having said that:

so the québécois trust others quite a lot less than other canadians do. a lot less. now, maybe that’s all down to the presence of montreal in quebec, but then why are the people in ontario so gosh-durned trusting? i mean, ontario’s got toronto and last time i checked that is very multiculti city. (the greater toronto metropolitan region, btw, comprises nearly half of ontario’s population — 5.5M out of 12.8M — and the montreal metro area is about the same for quebec — 3.8M out of 7.9M.)

couldn’t find this trust data broken down intra-regionally.

but here are some data for donations that i did find broken down by cities within regions — this chart is sorted by “mean charitable donation” (note that the figures for percent english or french for each city come from either wikipedia or here which is where most of the wikipedia figures seem to have come from) [click on chart for LARGER view]:

as you can see, the six quebec cities in the survey all rank right at the bottom of the list wrt how much money they donated in 2010. british columbians, otoh, are right up there at the top. i found a positive 0.57 correlation between the percentage of english-canadians living in a city and mean donation size, and conversely a negative 0.58 (-0.58) correlation between the percentage of french-canadians living in a city and mean donation size. in other words, if you want to benefit from large charitable donations in canada, make sure you live where there are lots of people of english ancestry — british columbia seems to be your best bet.

françois might make the montreal objection again, but what about places in quebec with high numbers of french-canadians but negligible numbers of other ethnic groups (like italians) — sherbrooke and saguenay, for instance — why are the people in those places so comparatively ungenerous?

the funniest contrast is between gatineau in quebec and ottawa in ontario which are right across the ontario river from each other. in 2001, 37.6% of the gatineau population responded that they had french ancestry, but only 6.4% said they had english ancestry. the next biggest group after french was the irish at 7.6%. italians were only 1.4% of the population. otoh, gatineau’s neighbor, ottawa, had 24.3% of english decent. and more italians than gatineau (4.9%). but ottawans were much more generous than people from gatineau in 2010.

here are the data sorted another way — by the percentages of taxfilers in each city who claimed deductions for their donations:

i found no correlation for either percent of english or french living in a city and the percentage of the population having given a donation (and claimed it on their taxes) in 2010. still, you can see on the chart that five of the six quebec cities are still in the lower half of the chart, four of them below the national average. but, most of the british columbian cities were also below the national average wrt the percentage of people in those cities actually giving donations. they may be big donors, but fewer of them actually donate than compared to people in, say, ontario.

so, the people in canadian cities with relatively high percentages of french-canadians give smaller charitable donations compared to the national average for canada, and they seem to give less frequently, too — although the connection between that latter behavior and french or english ethnicity doesn’t seem to be so strong. and the people in the province with the most french canadians — quebec — trust others much less than the rest of canadians. and, as seen in the previous post, quebec experiences the most corruption.

there’s something up with french canadians, i think. my guess is that, like other inbred populations, they’re more family-oriented than anglos. they might not be giving so generously to strangers because they’re busy giving generously to close and extended family members. i dunno. this is hardly the last word on the social/civic behaviors of french canadians. further research is required! (~_^)

previously: what’s up with french canadians?

(note: comments do not require an email. quarter of quebec’s maple syrup reserves stolen!)

what’s up with french canadians?

melykin says: “In Canada, Quebec seems to be much more corrupt than the rest of Canada. (This difference pre-dates mass immigration from non-European sources).”

sure enough, that seems to be true: Quebec: The most corrupt province.

i wondered where in france the québécois came from — one of the more inbred regions maybe? doesn’t look like it.

from (the first page of) The French Canadians in the Province of Quebec (’cause i don’t have access to the full article) [links added by me]:

“The ancestors of the French Canadians came from the northwest of France, chiefly from Normandy, Perche, Beauce, Maine, Anjou, Touraine, Poitou, Aunis, Angoumois, Saintonge, and part of Gascony. Nineteen twentieths of this population were derived from the above-mentioned provinces, and not from Brittany, as has often been stated.”

i drew a map. or, rather, i outlined these areas in orange on a map someone else drew (~_^):

if wikipedia is to be believed, most — or a lot — of the french immigrants to canada came from the area i outlined in red. (the ancestors of the acadians, many of whom wound up as cajuns in louisiana, came mostly from the area i outlined in green, which was also the homeland of the huguenots funnily enough.)

the orange areas had fairly low levels of consanguineous marriages in the twentieth century. and, i think, probably in the 1800s as well going by segalen’s reports on central france for that time period. what about cousin marriage rates for earlier periods in these orange areas? dunno. they probably weren’t much lower than the twentieth century figures, but were they much higher? my guess is probably not extraordinarily so, but i don’t know for sure.

which doesn’t really fit “the theory.” these very corrupt french canadians ought to have an inbred background according to me, right? well, maybe i’m wrong (“failure is always an option!” (~_^) ) — or maybe the french canadians will prove to be the exception that proves the rule. or maybe the past inbreeding rates were higher.

or maybe the corruption levels have to do with their subsequent inbreeding…?

only a few thousand (5,800?) french folks settled in canada in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and from that stock we got the 10M+ french canadians of today. Six thousand (6,000) french settlers would mean, roughly, 3,000 couples (if the numbers of men and women were equal, which they may not have been). (i’ve also seen a figure of ca. 8,000 french settlers, so that would mean 4,000 couples. edit: or 2,600 québécois!) that’s a rather narrow gene pool for founding a population. it’s a sort of inbreeding in itself.

and there was definitely plenty of cousin marriage amongst the french canadians down through the years. one study of the mating patterns in the 1800s in an area of quebec that had less inbreeding than other parts of the region found that the inbreeding coefficient of offspring there was 0.0111. that’s the equivalent of everyone in the region being second cousins-once-removed to third cousins. (and that was based on genealogical records from canada, so it doesn’t even take into account that the base population was already pretty closely related having started off so small.)

so, inbreeding in french canada happened. for a couple of hundred years — on top of starting off as a small-sized population. enough inbreeding to lead to the population having a rather corrupt nature? dunno.

of course, quebec isn’t only populated by french canadians. there are also irish and italians and people of english and scottish descent. but mostly it’s french canadians.

previously: french canadians still evolving and meanwhile, in france…

(note: comments do not require an email. yay french canada!)