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Online political debate, unbounded citizenship, and the problematic nature of a transnational public sphere

Cammaerts, Bart; Van Audenhove, Leo
Fonte: London School of Economics and Political Science Research Publicador: London School of Economics and Political Science Research
Tipo: Article; PeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em //2005 Português
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Citizenship has always been a dynamic notion, subject to change and permanent struggle over its precise content and meaning. Recent technological, economic, and political transformations have led to the development of alternative notions of citizenship that go beyond the classic understanding of its relationship to nation states and rights. Civil society actors play an important role in this process by organizing themselves at a transnational level, engaging with issues that transcend the boundaries of the nation state and questioning the democratic legitimacy of other transnational actors such as international and corporate organizations. They also allow citizens to engage with "unbounded" issues and to construct a transnational public sphere where such issues can be debated. It is often assumed that the Internet plays a crucial role in enabling this transnational public sphere to take shape. Empirical analysis of discussion forums and mailing lists developed by transnational civil society actors shows, however, that the construction of such a transnational public sphere is paved with constraints. To speak of a unified transnational public sphere is therefore deemed to be problematic. It cannot be seen or construed without taking into account the local...

Westminster can learn a lot about gender equality by looking at Welsh and Scottish levels of political representation

Stirbu, Diana Silvia
Fonte: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science Publicador: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science
Tipo: Website; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em 26/03/2012 Português
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Discrimination and under-representation of women is still overt and visible in politics. Diana Silvia Stirbu argues that progress on the gender equality agenda doesn’t come easily, but it is possible through a combination of structural, political and cultural factors. Westminster can learn a lot from the successes in the Welsh National Assembly and Scottish Parliament.

Book review: why nations fail: the vicious circle of extractive political and economic institutions

Hunter, Janet
Fonte: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science Publicador: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science
Tipo: Website; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em 21/08/2012 Português
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Based on fifteen years of original research Daron Acemoglu and James Robinson marshall a broad range of historical evidence from the Roman Empire, the Mayan city-states, medieval Venice, the Soviet Union, Latin America, England, Europe, the United States, and Africa to build a new theory of political economy, ultimately examining why some nations are poor and others rich. Janet Hunter takes issue with the absence of nuancing in the book, but is nevertheless impressed by its striking historical narratives which will do much to captivate readers and stimulate debate. Why Nations Fail: the Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty. Daron Acemoglu & James A Robinson. Crown Business. March 2012.

Show – don’t tell: political rhetoric is increasingly anecdotal but not particularly artful

Atkins, Judi; Finlayson, Alan
Fonte: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science Publicador: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science
Tipo: Website; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em 31/05/2012 Português
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Anecdotes have become one of the most common rhetorical devices in political speeches and debates to prove the success of policies or to illustrate that a leader is ‘down to earth’. Judi Atkins and Alan Finlayson explain why our politicians are ignoring Shakespeare and Keats and instead turning to ‘Holly from Southampton’ to prove their virtues.

An insider view on the relevance of political scientists to government

Wood, Matt
Fonte: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science Publicador: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science
Tipo: Website; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em 02/06/2012 Português
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Following his work with the Cabinet Office’s Efficiency and Reform Group (ERG), Matt Wood finds that political scientists must ask themselves two questions: precisely how they hope to make impact, and which society groups they want their work to be relevant to.

Society is running out of time to renew the political party

Lloyd, James
Fonte: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science Publicador: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science
Tipo: Website; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em 14/09/2012 Português
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James Lloyd traces the decline of the political party. He warns without a much-needed revival of party membership, this key aspect of democracy will erode, along with its numerous and irreplaceable benefits.

All three major political parties are deeply conflicted over the politics of privacy

Bernal, Paul
Fonte: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science Publicador: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science
Tipo: Website; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em 05/12/2012 Português
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The proposed Communications Data Bill has proved deeply controversial, generating widespread debate about privacy and civil liberties. Paul Bernal offers an overview of the dynamics within each of the major political parties on such issues and argues that the politics of privacy are deeply complex.

Personal anxieties and political agendas are in the way of an objective debate on drugs policy

Mills, James
Fonte: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science Publicador: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science
Tipo: Website; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em 19/12/2012 Português
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In this post James Mills reviews government drug policy through history. He finds it odd that MPs today admit they are unable to have an objective debate about drug policy whilst much of this is due to the fact that in the past so many of them have obscured the issues with their personal anxieties and political agendas.

Book review: the question of peace in modern political thought edited by Toivo Koivukoski and David Edward Tabachnick

Blanchard, Alexander
Fonte: London School of Economics and Political Science Publicador: London School of Economics and Political Science
Tipo: Website; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em 23/10/2015 Português
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Can the study of peace be separated from the study of war? In The Question of Peace in Modern Political Thought, editors Toivo Koivukoski and David Edward Tabachnick attempt to present an interrogation of peace as an independent strand of philosophical inquiry. While Alexander Blanchard suggests that challenging the conflation of the study of war and of peace may not be fully achieved, he welcomes the volume for exploring philosophers not usually associated with the concept of peace and for providing timely reflections on the question of cosmopolitan rights in the light of the current refugee crisis.

A discussion on the financing of political parties is desperately needed: government is wasting more than money if it buries research on the difficult choices between public funding and capped donations

Fisher, Justin
Fonte: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science Publicador: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science
Tipo: Website; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em 01/12/2011 Português
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If political parties are to play their essential role in our democracy, we must ensure that they are funded appropriately. A recent report into party financing concludes that if we want to reduce donations, we have to cap them and therefore also extend public funding of parties. Justin Fisher fears that these radical conclusions will be largely ignored by government who are against any increase in the public funding of parties at this time of economic crisis.

The re-vamped public inquiries currently changing Westminster constituency boundaries in record time (across the whole of the UK) keep power firmly in the hands of the biggest political parties, and not the general public

Johnston, Ron; Pattie, Charles; Rossiter, David
Fonte: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science Publicador: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science
Tipo: Website; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em 07/12/2011 Português
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Many commentators initially welcomed the changes in public consultation introduced to speed up the redrawing of boundaries for the new parliamentary constituencies. Yet it has become starkly clear that the revised system continues to favour the desires of established political parties with the resources to influence the proceedings. After sitting in on many sessions of the new process, Ron Johnston, Charlies Pattie and David Rossiter get an overwhelming sense of déjà vu.

Book review: Making sense of media and politics: five principles in political communication

Moise, Andreea
Fonte: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science Publicador: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science
Tipo: Website; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em 18/12/2011 Português
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After an explosive year for politics and the media, Gadi Wolfsfeld’s Making Sense of Media and Politics will appeal to those interested in gaining a thorough understanding of the powerful role that media has in shaping political outcomes, finds Andreea Moise.

In the wake of public crises, political “blame games” can lead to bad public policies

Marvel, John
Fonte: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science Publicador: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science
Tipo: Website; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em 10/10/2014 Português
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When things go wrong, such as when disasters and other crises occur, politicians often look to assign blame in order to gain political capital. But how do members of the public react when politicians and public servants apportion blame? Using the April 2013 Boston Marathon bombings as a case study, John Marvel finds that an individual’s sense of who is to blame depends on who is doing the blaming, and who is being blamed. He argues that such ‘blame games’ can have an effect on which government policy responses people are willing to support to address future crises.

Endogenous preferences: the political consequences of economic institutions

De Neve, Jan-Emmanuel
Fonte: Department of Government, London School of Economics and Political Science Publicador: Department of Government, London School of Economics and Political Science
Tipo: Monograph; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em 27/05/2009 Português
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This paper attempts to explain cross-national voting behavior in 18 Western democracies over 1960-2003. It starts by introducing a new data set for the median voter that corrects for stochastic error in the statistics from the Comparative Manifesto Project. Next, the paper finds that electoral behavior is closely related to the salience of particular economic institutions. Labour organization, skill specificity, and public sector employment are found to influence individual voting behavior. At the country level, this paper therefore suggests that coordinated market economies move the median voter to the left, whereas liberal market economies move the median voter to the right. The empirical analysis employs cross-sectional and panel data that is instrumented with the level of economic structure circa 1900 to estimate the net effect of economic institutions on the median voter. Significant results show that revealed voter preferences are endogenous to the economic institutions of the political economy. This paper places Political Economy at the heart of voting behavior and implies the existence of institutional advantages to partisan politics.

Book review: dynamics of political violence: a process-oriented perspective on radicalisation and the escalation of political conflict, edited by Lorenzo Bosi et al.

Kalpokas, Ignas
Fonte: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science Publicador: Blog post from London School of Economics & Political Science
Tipo: Website; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em 02/05/2014 Português
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Dynamics of Political Violence examines how violence emerges and develops from episodes of contentious politics. Contributors consider a wide range of empirical cases, including anarchist movements, ethno-nationalist and left-wing militancy in Europe, contemporary Islamist violence, and insurgencies in South Africa and Latin America. This collection constitutes a very important contribution to the debate on radicalisation, writes Ignas Kalpokas. The ‘process-oriented’ approach to understanding violent movements not only dispels some false assumptions often prevalent in our understanding but is also capable of informing scientists and practitioners alike.

Bad apples: political paralysis and the quality of politicians

Leon, Gabriel
Fonte: The London School of Economics and Political Science, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines Publicador: The London School of Economics and Political Science, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines
Tipo: Monograph; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em /08/2009 Português
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Why do elected officials often suffer from political paralysis and fail to implement the best policies available? This paper considers a new yet intuitive explanation that focuses on the quality of the politicians competing to replace the incumbent. The key insight is that a ‘good’ incumbent with preferences identical to those of a representative voter will want to keep corrupt politicians out of office; she may do so by distorting her policy choices to signal her type and win re-election. The value of signalling and staying in office increases with the fraction of corrupt types in the population of politicians. Electing good types may therefore not be enough to ensure that the best policies are implemented, especially when corrupt politicians are common. This provides a new explanation for why political failure is particularly severe in corrupt democracies.

Beyond epistemic democracy: the identification and pooling of information by groups of political agents.

Thompson, Christopher Jeremy
Fonte: London School of Economics and Political Science Thesis Publicador: London School of Economics and Political Science Thesis
Tipo: Thesis; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em /09/2011 Português
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This thesis addresses the mechanisms by which groups of agents can track the truth, particularly in political situations. I argue that the mechanisms which allow groups of agents to track the truth operate in two stages: firstly, there are search procedures; and secondly, there are aggregation procedures. Search procedures and aggregation procedures work in concert. The search procedures allow agents to extract information from the environment. At the conclusion of a search procedure the information will be dispersed among different agents in the group. Aggregation procedures, such as majority rule, expert dictatorship and negative reliability unanimity rule, then pool these pieces of information into a social choice. The institutional features of both search procedures and aggregation procedures account for the ability of groups to track the truth and amount to social epistemic mechanisms. Large numbers of agents are crucial for the epistemic capacities of both search procedures and aggregation procedures. This thesis makes two main contributions to the literature on social epistemology and epistemic democracy. Firstly, most current accounts focus on the Condorcet Jury Theorem and its extensions as the relevant epistemic mechanism that can operate in groups of political agents. The introduction of search procedures to epistemic democracy is (mostly) new. Secondly...

The political economy of conditional foreign aid to Spain, 1950-1963: relief of input bottlenecks, economic policy change and political credibility

Calvo-Gonzalez, Oscar
Fonte: London School of Economics and Political Science Thesis Publicador: London School of Economics and Political Science Thesis
Tipo: Thesis; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em //2002 Português
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This thesis advances our understanding of the effects of foreign aid programmes in the Spanish economy during the 1950s. It does so by concentrating on three aspects. First, it considers the contribution to economic growth of aid-financed goods by relieving input bottlenecks. Results from an input-output analysis downplay the alleged importance of aid in increasing Spanish output by providing raw materials and other inputs. Second, it discusses the extent to which foreign donors influenced Spanish economic policy-making. Based on original archival sources from both recipient and donors, it is argued here that the United States was particularly ineffective at imposing its economic policy agenda. Surprisingly, the best way to increase the likelihood of the adoption of economic policy reform was not to exercise outright leverage but to provide further unconditional aid disbursements. The analysis of the involvement of the International Monetary Fund and Organisation for European Economic Co-operation to underwrite the 1959 Spanish Stabilisation Plan suggests that the multilateral organisations were acutely aware of the overriding importance of a true commitment to the reforms by the local policy-makers. Rather than relying on formal conditionality...

Political information, elections and public policy

Larcinese, Valentino
Fonte: London School of Economics and Political Science Thesis Publicador: London School of Economics and Political Science Thesis
Tipo: Thesis; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em //2003 Português
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This thesis contributes to the study of the role of information in elections and public policy formation. Its main focus is on information acquisition and voting behaviour. Chapter 1 discusses the motivation of this research and presents a survey of related literature. Chapter 2 focuses on electoral turnout, Chapter 3 on public policy, and Chapter 4 on mass media. Chapter 2 studies the impact of information on electoral turnout. Since incentives to be informed are correlated with other incentives to participate in public life, a model of information acquisition and turnout is introduced to isolate potential instrumental variables and try to establish a causal relation. Results are tested on the 1997 General Election in Britain. It is shown that information, as well as ideology, matters for turnout. It also contributes to explain the systematic correlation of turnout with variables like education and income. Voters' knowledge of candidates and of other political issues is also substantially influenced by mass media. Chapter 3 presents a model that links the distribution of political knowledge with redistributive policies. It argues that voters can have private incentives to be informed about politics and that such incentives are correlated with income. Therefore redistribution will be systematically lower than what the median voter theorem predicts. Moreover...

Advances on a methodology of design and engineering in economics and political science

Morett, Fernando
Fonte: London School of Economics and Political Science Thesis Publicador: London School of Economics and Political Science Thesis
Tipo: Thesis; NonPeerReviewed Formato: application/pdf
Publicado em //2014 Português
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This thesis consists of five chapters: 1.The Mechanical View, 2.Social Machines, 3.The FCC Auction Machine, 4.Self-Interested Knaves, and 5.Self-Interested but Sympathetic. In the first three chapters, I advance a methodological account of current design and engineering in economics and political science, which I call methodological mechanicism. It is not ontological or literal; it relies on a technological metaphor by describing market and state institutions as machines, and the human mind as consisting of a number of mechanisms. I introduce the Mechanical view on scientific theories as distinct from the Syntactic and the Semantic views. The electromagnetic theories from the nineteenth century are used to illustrate this view as well as the use of minimal and maximal analogies in model-building in normal and revolutionary science. The Mechanical view is extended to the social sciences, particularly to mechanism design theory and institutional design, using the International Monetary Fund, the NHS internal markets and the FCC auction as examples. Their blueprints are evaluated using criteria such as shielding and power for calculating joint effects as well as libertarian, dirigiste, egalitarian and inegalitarian properties; and the holistic and piecemeal engineering they adopt. Experimental parameter variation is introduced as a method complementing design. Any design assumes a particular moral psychology...