The Spread of Ideas Related to the Developmental Idealism Model in Albania

Publication Abstract

Gjonça, Arjan, and Arland Thornton. 2019. "The Spread of Ideas Related to the Developmental Idealism Model in Albania." Sociology of Development, 5(3): 265.

In this paper we use data from a nationally representative survey conducted in Albania in 2005 to study the spread of the worldviews, values, and beliefs of developmental idealism in the country. We find that Albanians have adopted developmental idealism, with ideas about development and developmental hierarchies that are similar to those of international elites. A substantial majority of Albanians also endorse the developmental idealist belief of an association between socioeconomic development and family matters. Many perceive development as both a cause and an effect of family change, but with more seeing it as a cause than as an effect. Albanians also perceive development as more closely related to fertility and gender equality than to age at marriage. But despite believing that development and family change are related, most Albanians continue to endorse lifetime marriage and strong intergenerational relations. This unique perception of development and demographic behavior reflects Albania's unique history with regard to economic, political and social change. We conclude that despite living in one of the most radical state socialist regimes in the world, which tried to keep its population sealed off from the outside world for many years, Albanians endorse many of the elements of developmental idealism.

10.1525/sod.2019.5.3.265

Country of focus: Albania.

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