Professor Peter Dinesen
I am a professor of Political Science at UCL. I obtained my PhD in Political Science at Aarhus University (2011), and after working at the University of Southern Denmark (2010-2011), I worked at the University of Copenhagen, where I maintain an affiliation.
My research focuses on how individuals form beliefs and attitudes about other people, politics and society at large.
Social trust. My primary topic of interest has been generalized social trust - trust in unknown others - which is often considered “the social glue” that binds people together enabling them to cooperate with positive downstream consequences for individuals and societies. In my work, I have tried to understand the causes of social trust; specifically the role of immigration and state institutions.
Immigration sentiments. Another line of my work explores the sources of anti-immigrant/immigration sentiments and behaviors among the native-born, both in mass publics and among elected officials.
Political engagement: In this line of work I have examined how political engagement is shaped by sociodemographic factors, personal experiences, and personality traits.
Consequences of terrorism: I have also scrutinized the consequences of terrorism for both democratic citizenship (institutional trust and support for civil liberties) as well as mental health (e.g. diagnoses of mental disorders).
Local economic context: In previous work I have demonstrated how local economic signals (unemployment and housing prices) shape voting behavior and its anteceding perceptions. In an on-going project, I examine a range of potential consequences of local economic inequality.
- Selected Publications
Dinesen, P.T., and K.M. Sønderskov (2015). “Ethnic Diversity and Social Trust: Evidence from the Micro-Context.”, American Sociological Review, 80(3), 550-573.
Dinesen, P. T., Schaeffer, M., and Sønderskov, K. M. (2020). “Ethnic Diversity and Social Trust: A Narrative and Meta-Analytical Review.” Annual Review of Political Science, Vol. 23, pp. 441-465.
Sønderskov, K.M., and P.T. Dinesen (2016). “Trusting the State, Trusting Each Other? The Effect of Institutional Trust on Social Trust.”, Political Behavior, 38(1), 179-202.
Dinesen, P. T., Dahl, M., and Schiøler, M. (2021). “When are Legislators Responsive to Ethnic Minorities? Testing the Role of Electoral Incentives and Candidate Selection for Mitigating Ethnocentric Responsiveness.” American Political Science Review, Vol. 115(2): pp. 450-466.
Danckert, B., Dinesen, P.T., and Sønderskov, K.M. (2017). ”Reacting to Neighborhood Cues? Political Sophistication Moderates the Effect of Exposure to Immigrants.” Public Opinion Quarterly, 81(1), pp. 37-56.
Sønderskov, K. M., Dinesen, P. T., Finkel, S., and Hansen, K. M. (2022). “Crime Victimization Increases Turnout: Evidence from Individual-Level Administrative Panel Data.” British Journal of Political Science. Vol. 52(1), pp. 399-407.
Dinesen, P. T., Dawes, C., Johanneson, M., Klemmensen, R., Magnusson, P., Nørgaard, A., Petersen, P, and Oskarsson, S. (2016). “Estimating the Impact of Education on Political Engagement: Evidence from Monozygotic Twins in the United States, Denmark and Sweden.” Political Behavior, 38(3), pp. 579-601.
Sønderskov, K. M., Dinesen, P. T., Hansen, B. T., Østergaard, S. D., and Danckert, B. (2021). “Terrorism in the Country of Origin is Linked to Deterioration in the Mental Health of Refugees.” Nature Human Behaviour, 5, 1555-1561.
Dinesen, P. T., and Jæger, M. M. (2013). “The Effect of Terror on Institutional Trust: New Evidence from the 3/11 Madrid Terrorist Attack.” Political Psychology, 34(6), pp. 917-926.
Larsen, M. V., Hjorth, F., Dinesen, P. T., and Sønderskov K. M. (2019). “When do Citizens Respond Politically to the Local Economy? Evidence from Registry Data on Local Housing Markets.” American Political Science Review, Vol. 113(2), pp. 499-516.
Bisgaard, M., Dinesen, P.T. & Sønderskov, K.M. (2016). “Reconsidering the Neighborhood Effect: Does Exposure to Residential Unemployment Influence Voters' Perceptions of the National Economy?” The Journal of Politics, 78(3), 719-732.
I teach political behaviour and related fields. I am interested in supervising PhD students, who would like to work on social and political attitude and belief formation broadly understood (e.g., social and political trust, attitudes toward immigrants/immigration, and political participation).