Individual Determinants That Trigger Protest Participation: The Case of Mexico City

Monday, 11 July 2016: 09:45
Location: Seminarsaal 10 (Juridicum)
Oral Presentation
Roberto CARRILLO SÁENZ, Universite Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium
During the decades of 1960-1970, big Protest Events (PE) have taken place in Europe and in the USA, those mobilizations have drawn the attention of social scientists and among all the approaches that were explored to study this phenomenon two were used and developed the most. On one hand, the resource mobilization theory was emphasized in the USA, whereas the new social movement was privileged in Europe

Both theories were developed in two societies that are not different – socio-economically speaking – from each other. Hence, PE participants will share some characteristics. But what happens in societies that don't share the same characteristics found in those countries? Who are the people who take part in PE? To what extent the social movements theories can explain this phenomenon in a country like Mexico where it's a fact that the society differs from countries where the mainstream theories were written?

At the micro level, Mexican demonstrators should be studied taking into consideration the variability of the traditional determinants that trigger social protest. In this regard, based on a questionnaire applied to 569 people (including protest participants and non-participants) during and after street demonstrations in Mexico City in 2014, this research aims at analyzing if variables related to demographics, emotions, satisfaction with the political context, political/civic membership and participation of the social circles that surround an individual could predict the probability of taking part in PE according to the relevant theory.

For the study of these determinants, the data collected will focus on three subjects aiming the individual level: contextual dissatisfaction, characteristics and socio-structural conditions. The first findings suggest that some characteristics diverge from what was expected, for example, the traditional role of the family, the active participation even under conditions of danger or the potential that personal invitations still have over social-media.