Government & Politics Theses and Dissertations

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    Racial Moderation as Preference or Constraint? Examining Racial Pragmatism Among Black Americans
    (2023) Bishop, William B; Banks, Antoine; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)
    In this dissertation, I offer a theory of racial pragmatism to explain how the broader social context influences the social and political behavior of Black Americans. I define racial pragmatism as a Black belief system where through double consciousness (DuBois 1903) and their use of the pragmatic method (Dewey 1929), adherents are aware of Americans’ opposition to Black voters’ desired social changes. This reality has led pragmatic Black Americans to conclude that as a group, Black Americans are hampered in their ability to articulate and enact a progressive and racialized political agenda that uniquely benefits members of their racial group. Behaving similarly to pragmatic Black elites such as David Dinkins and Barack Obama (Harris 2012; Marable and Clark 2009; Reft 2009), when striving for social progress, I argue that pragmatic Black voters are hesitant to embrace race conscious political strategies, policies, and candidates, not because they oppose them outright, but rather they view these race-conscious options as ineffective in the current social environment. To evaluate my theory, I created an 8-item survey measure of racial pragmatism. I find that racial pragmatism is a statistically reliable measure and I found repeated support for my theory through a series of observational and experimental studies. As racial pragmatism increases, Black Americans are less likely to vote for racially progressive Democrats, offer more moderate positions on racial policies such as reparations, and envision greater political backlash from white Americans when politicians speak out about racial issues that affect Black people. I also find that pragmatists are more reactive to threat when compared to co-racial group members who scored lower in racial pragmatism. As racial pragmatism increases, Black Americans are more likely to compromise and abandon their liberal policy positions when responding to threat stimuli. Finally, I also found that my theory and measure of racial pragmatism has important social implications outside of politics. As racial pragmatism increases, Black Americans are more likely to both support and engage in strategic deracialization efforts such as codeswitching to mute their racial identities and increase their chances of fair treatment in American society. This research provides insight into the complex actions that Black Americans employ in their daily lives to compensate for prejudice and strategically develop tactics for achieving uplift in a country that is hostile to their interests and rights. Through racial pragmatism, some Black Americans make strategic and deliberate choices to deemphasize their racial identities and relegate racial issues in politics to decrease their chances of experiencing prejudice and backlash from non-Black Americans.
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    Religious belief, religious minorities, and support for democracy
    (2023) Overos, Henry David; Birnir, Johanna K.; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)
    Over the last two decades, the intersection of religion in politics and democratic backsliding has prompted questions about public support for democracy. This study investigates the link between individual-level religious beliefs, religious minority status, and support for democracy. It presents a modified authoritarian personality theory, proposing that higher religious commitment correlates with stronger support for authoritarianism and weaker support for liberal democracy. This hypothesis is tested using Latent Class Analysis (LCA) and validated through the World Values Survey data. A survey experiment in Indonesia in 2022 examines the impact of minority status on views regarding liberal democracy. The findings indicate that religious commitment is associated with reduced support for liberal democracy, and minority status can affect perspectives on democracy under specific political contexts. Additionally, this research pioneers a large-scale approach to measuring religious experience through clustering analysis. It underscores the need to explore how democracy is perceived differently by diverse segments of the population, adding depth to the study of democratic support.
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    Foreign Direct Investment in Authoritarian States
    (2023) Englund, Chase Coleman; Allee, Todd; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)
    In this dissertation, I examine autocracies and demonstrate why some autocratic regimes attract considerable investment whereas others do not. I advance two primary claims. The first is that autocratic regimes in which there is political competition actually receive less FDI than those in which there is less competition. Autocratic states tend to have weak institutional protections for investors, which causes greater uncertainty for businesses that fear costly policy changes. Therefore, when political competition in autocracies is greater, investors become more cautious and FDI inflows decline. The second claim is that FDI is more targeted to certain sectors in autocratic states with less political competition. This is because autocratic leaders seek to use FDI as a private good to favor members of their winning coalition. Therefore, autocrats with smaller coalitions (i.e., less political competition) will use policy to steer the benefits of FDI more narrowly. This is important because the use of FDI as a private good in this way tends to entrench authoritarianism. In analyzing both claims, I also examine the relative number of economic elites in a state, which I argue is an important and fundamental indicator of competition over policy (alongside the political measures), because it determines the size of an autocrat’s winning coalition. I find strong support for both of these hypotheses, using a wide range of novel data that I have compiled from several unique sources and various private organizations. I examine the volume and sectoral concentration of FDI in thousands of cases involving more than 100 non-democratic states over a 42-year period, beginning in 1980. In order to measure foreign investors’ perceptions of the policy environment in nondemocratic states, I also utilize data from an automated textual analysis of quarterly earnings calls of publicly traded firms located in authoritarian settings. Even after controlling for other factors, I first find that greater political competition is associated with greater perception of risk by foreign investors and lower FDI inflows. To measure the number of economic elites relative to economic activity, I employ a novel measure of stock market concentration that estimates the degree to which a market is either oligarchic or diversified. These results are important and timely because many of the largest recipients of FDI globally are now autocratic states. This means that large segments of the global population will depend on authoritarian governance to attract FDI, which is widely considered important to global economic development. Furthermore, understanding whether or not we can expect FDI to have a democratizing impact on autocratic government is crucial to developing expectations about how FDI will shape global politics in the decades to come.
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    The Origins and Implementation of the 1992 Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) Agreement
    (2002) Perry, Todd E.; Quester, George
    The 1992 Nuclear Suppliers (NSG) Agreement remains the only multilateral forum, with the exception of the complementary Zangger Committee, in which states capable of supplying nuclear and nuclear-related technologies attempt to constrain the flow of these technologies to countries of proliferation concern. This study reviews the history of multilateral nuclear nonproliferation export control cooperation and complementary international safeguards systems leading up to the conclusion of the 1992 NSG Agreement. This review reveals that nuclear-related crises like the Indian nuclear explosion of the 1974 and the discovery of the Iraqi near-proliferation in 1991 have been the most proximate causes of multilateral reforms, but that U.S. domestic politics has been the primary filter through which these crises have been interpreted and subsequently translated into domestic and multilateral export control arrangements. This study therefore asks the question as to whether or not the "feedback loop" between proliferation-related crises and multilateral export control reform remains in place. To evaluate the main variables responsible for reform and the evolving relationships between them, three increasingly stringent stages of multilateral export controls on nuclear weapons-related technology from 1943 to 1992 are analyzed. These variables are then reviewed for the 1992-2002 period and compared to the three earlier stages of reform to assess the continued relevance of the determinative factors of Cold War-era export control reforms to the export control challenges of the 21st century. This study concludes that the crisis-reform dynamic is unlikely to repeat itself due to changes at the U.S. domestic level, but that knowledgeable bureaucrats and outside experts remain prepared to pursue reform should U.S. leaders attempt to pursue reform in the absence of the public pressures created by a nuclear-related crisis.
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    Minority Language Policy and Ethnic Conflict
    (2023) Ozkan, Alperen; Birnir, Jóhanna K; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)
    Language is one of the most important cleavages along which ethnic identities are formed and shaped. Yet, in addition to being an identity marker, language is a policy area, in which the state cannot remain impartial toward the interests of the speakers of different languages in a country. The main research questions of my dissertation are how minority language policies are formed and how different policy outcomes affect likelihood of ethnic conflict. Recent empirical evidence suggests that ethnic conflicts are likely to occur along linguistic lines at least as much as religious ones. Despite this finding, the role of language policies in occurrence of conflict remains uncovered. I claim that this is partly due to paying insufficient attention to how minority language policies are formed while explaining the link between language and ethnic conflict. Language policies in multilingual societies are political outcomes that emerge out of the interplay between ethnic competition and rivalry, national cohesion, and ethnolinguistic vitality of linguistic minorities. I argue that these three factors are primarily reflected by relative group size and interaction of language divide with other social cleavages. Specifically, I contend that these two variables shape language policy outcome by impacting group capability for mobilization and coalition building patterns. In turn, I claim that the most restrictive policy option, defined by exclusion of minority language from public sphere, and the most accommodative policy option, promotion of minority language by state, contribute to outbreak of ethnic conflict along linguistic lines. But middle-ground policies based on toleration of use of minority language in public sphere and providing support for it has the potential to defuse the tensions over language policy and contribute to prevention of conflict breaking out. I test these propositions on a cross-national dataset of minority language policy that covers 424 linguistic minority groups from 50 randomly selected countries. Results provide robust empirical support for the theory.
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    The Impact of Sanctions on the Domestic Response of Autocrats as Conditioned by Political and Economic Structures
    (2023) Stein, Maeryn Goldman; Huth, Paul K.; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)
    The use of economic sanctions has grown exponentially since the conclusion of the Cold War, and research on these policy tools has similarly proliferated. Although much of this scholarship is dedicated to evaluating the efficacy of sanctions, in recent years researchers have begun considering the consequences of sanctions for target states, and the international community more broadly, while also exploring how the characteristics of the target state influence the effects and outcomes of sanctions. Nevertheless, fundamental questions remain unanswered: How do sanctions impact a leader’s domestic policy choices? How do state structures condition the effects of sanctions? And how do sanctions influence the relationship between leaders and their populace? This project addresses these issues by examining how the economic and political structures that define a state shape how sanctions influence the domestic policy choices of autocratic regimes.I argue that a leader’s domestic constituency is multifaceted, and policies that might quiet certain subsets of the population will have little impact on other groups. Autocratic regimes select a matrix of policies best suited to coopt or suppress different sources of threat, thereby achieving a status quo. When sanctions target a primed audience, autocrats must adjust their policy matrix or risk either a coup or rebellion. The groups that are impacted by sanctions, how these groups respond, and how autocrats can best mitigate unrest is contingent on the types of sanctions imposed (targeted or comprehensive) and the economic and political structures that define the state. My theoretical arguments produce two hypotheses and eight sub-hypotheses. The first hypothesis deals with how the political structure (measured by the regime’s Loyalty Norm) conditions the regime’s domestic policy response (Systemic Repression and/or Patronage) to threats resulting from the imposition of targeted and comprehensive sanctions. The second hypothesis addresses how a state’s economic structure, measured by the regime’s income source (earned or unearned), conditions the response (Public Goods and/or Patronage) to threats that arise from targeted and comprehensive sanctions. I explore the relationship between sanctions, state structures, and response using a reconstructed dataset that examines sanction imposition at the target-year level of analysis. The quantitative study supports five of my eight sub-hypotheses. Interestingly, the three sub-hypotheses that are not supported involve the use of Patronage, suggesting that there are issues with the definition and/or measures of Patronage I employed that bear further investigation. To further clarify the dynamics between sanction type, economic and political structures, and domestic response, I conduct two case studies that focus on the leader’s use of Patronage. The first case study evaluates the impact of US sanctions on Nicaragua during the 1980s. The second explores how sanctions influenced the Qadhafi regime’s domestic policies in Libya from 1978 - 1999. Taken together, the quantitative and qualitative studies confirm that economic sanctions can and do disrupt the relationship between autocrats and the populace, leading the regime to reconstruct their domestic policy matrix. The state’s structures condition this dynamic, and economic structures can be as influential as political institutions in shaping policies. Finally, this study demonstrates that traditional conceptions of Patronage require further consideration and a regime’s use of Patronage is typically more nuanced than it is for repressive strategies. Conventional measures of Patronage, such as corruption and clientelism, as well as the boundary between Patronage and the provision of Public Goods deserve closer scrutiny.
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    The Oil Blessing? Hydrocarbons’ Effects on Maritime Boundary Formation
    (2023) O'Brien, Patrick L; Huth, Paul H; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)
    Do natural resources help states resolve contentious maritime boundary issues? Literature on maritime boundaries suggests that states often sign maritime boundary agreements to acquire offshore hydrocarbons, yet there are also ample examples when resources have been the reason why states dispute maritime zones. To explain this apparent contradiction, an oil effect is posited that is conditional on states’ pre-existing claims. When maritime neighbors do not have overlapping maritime claims, the onset of oil interests in bordering maritime space make states more likely to sign delimitation agreements to achieve the legal certainty necessary to extract the oil. However, among states engaged in a maritime dispute prior to the onset of hydrocarbon interests, a different industry risk calculus, increased audience costs, and institutional challenges in reducing extant claims all mean that the same effect should not be observable. Meanwhile, the increased issue salience born from the oil interest should also make states more likely to pursue peaceful settlement attempts through other agreements related to their maritime zones, like establishing a joint development zone or pursuing third party conflict management. A dataset of maritime boundaries was improved upon to test this theory on 447 pairs of maritime neighbors from 1946 to 2016. Regression analyses confirm that a nearby oil discovery makes delimitation agreements more likely only among dyads without a prior existing dispute. Closer examination of 27 joint development zone agreements and 38 agreements to pursue binding third-party dispute settlement suggest that the order of events also plays a key role. Indeed, states engaged in a new dispute prompted by hydrocarbon interests are the most likely to sign all three agreement types—delimitation, joint development zone, and judicial settlement. In a comparative case study using U.S. maritime boundaries, oil interests are shown to have hastened delimitation agreements between the United States and Mexico, whereas oil interests made dispute resolution more difficult in U.S.-Canada maritime boundary areas. After resorting to and enduring the ordeal of a World Court case to achieve one partial settlement, Ottawa and Washington had little appetite to address remaining disputes. The implications of these findings for the world’s remaining undelimited boundaries are then discussed, focusing on East Asia.
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    Words that Matter: Three Essays on Multilateral Opposition to War
    (2022) Kim, Hyunki; Huth, Paul; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)
    My dissertation titled “Words that Matter: Three Essays on Multilateral Opposition to War” advances our understanding of how the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) constrains state behavior through the use of verbal condemnation. The UNSC has an array of tools to manage violent conflicts, including condemnations, economic sanctions, and military actions. Existing scholarship largely discounts verbal condemnations as ineffective because they are not backed up by coercive actions that impose tangible costs. Empirical patterns and anecdotal illustrations, however, suggest contrary findings – that verbal condemnations can constrain state behavior under certain conditions. I address this gap by examining how variation across UNSC condemnations impacts the crisis-actors’ decision to escalate. I argue that variation in legal invocation and rhetorical severity sends important signals to the targeted state that can change the expected costs of war and, ultimately, prevent escalation. I further examine the determinants of rhetorical variation across UNSC condemnations through the lens of power-sharing and power-politics within the UN. I find that the permanent members influence the contents of the resolution, but the Council President shapes the UN’s agenda. My theoretical expectations and findings are validated by an empirical analysis of international crisis-actors from 1946 to 2017 with the original coding of legality and severity in the UNSC resolutions. This dissertation project improves our understanding of the UN’s role in conflict management, especially through condemnations. The findings suggest that rhetorical tools can be just as effective, and that the UN’s multilateral efforts can mitigate interstate conflicts in world politics by invoking international law and designing impactful messages.
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    Why Do Rebels Split? Examining The Causes Of Rebel Group Fragmentation
    (2022) Stern , Moran; Telhami, Shibley; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)
    Why do rebel groups undergo fragmentation? While extensive research about the consequences of rebel fragmentation exists, research on the process of fragmentation remains relatively nascent. This dissertation collects three papers on the causes of rebel group fragmentation. In the first paper, I develop a junior cadres-based explanation of fragmentation. I argue that in a centralized rebel group, factions will emerge when leaders block junior cadres’ access to senior decision-making bodies. Junior cadres who want to influence the organization’s politics therefore face a choice between remaining within the rebel group and exiting it. Factionalizing is a way to redress grievances by aggrieved junior cadres who deem peaceful mechanisms for upward mobility ineffective. Using original datasets and personal interviews, I find strong evidence supporting my argument in the case of Palestinian Fatah. In the second paper, I argue that the solution to the question of fragmentation lies in rebel socialization—specifically, military training (MT). MT increases group cohesion by strengthening horizontal bonds among combatants; vertical bonds between combatants and commanders; and members’ institutional bonds to the organization’s overall mission and esprit de corps. Members become mutually dependent, thus making splintering more costly and fragmentation less likely. I test this argument on a global sample of 83 rebel groups active between 1989 and 2010. I find that rebel groups that have recently conducted MT are less likely to fragment by about 75 percent. In the third paper, I explore the effect of foreign fighters (FFs) on rebel fragmentation, examining a number of mechanisms derived from previous research. First, I explore how reduced group dependency on local fighters, preference divergence, strategic disagreements, and member segregation increase the likelihood of fragmentation for rebel groups that recruit FFs. Second, I posit that if the foreignness of FFs in relation to local insurgents makes fragmentation more likely, then rebel groups that recruit coethnic FFs will be less likely to experience fragmentation. I test these arguments on a global sample of 227 rebel groups active between 1989 and 2011. I find that rebel groups that recruit FFs are significantly more likely to fragment, even after accounting for the endogenous choice of rebel groups to recruit FFs. Against my expectations, I find that the recruitment of coethnic FFs does not diminish the probability of fragmentation. This finding raises questions about the value of ethnic homogeneity in the context of FFs in particular.
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    Follow the Leaders: Policy Presentation in the U.S. Congress
    (2022) Gaynor, SoRelle Wyckoff; Miler, Kristina; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)
    This dissertation presents a theory of policy presentation in the U.S. Congress. I define policy presentation as the strategic development and distribution of partisan information to explain major legislative decisions by congressional leaders. Today, rank-and-file members, increasingly removed from the legislative process, rely on guidance from congressional leaders to discuss major legislative decisions with their constituents. As a result, preparing constituent communication materials has become an institutionalized responsibility for party and committee leaders, particularly for House Republicans. I also argue that policy presentation is an undocumented source of partisan polarization, as it incentivizes a partisan presentation of legislative activity—even in cases of bipartisanship and compromise. Using interviews with members of Congress and staff, computational text analysis, and social network analysis, I demonstrate how congressional leaders develop and distribute partisan messages for constituent use. I also document the conditions under which policy presentation occurs, and the members most likely to rely on party and committee leaders for assistance with constituent communication.
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    The Politics of Appointing Insiders and Outsiders: Appointing Provincial Government Agency Heads in China
    (2022) Wang, Xiaonan; Pearson, Margaret M.; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)
    My dissertation studies the politics of appointing insiders and outsiders in China’s provincial government agencies. This study is motivated by the following puzzles: why are most agency heads appointed from outside of the agency instead of from the inside, and why has the trend of appointing outsiders increased over time? This question is relevant beyond China, has important implications for the quality of government, and is related to the broad problem of bureaucratic authority and political control. I find that three existing theories of bureaucratic appointments – the incentive-assignment conflict (the Peter Principle), patron-client relationships, and human capital or political experience – cannot fully explain the patterns of appointing provincial government agency heads in China. I develop and empirically test a theoretical framework that draws insights from the literature on delegation and bureaucratic embeddedness. Provincial leaders face an information-collusion trade-off in appointing agency heads: while agency heads with prior experience inside the agency help reduce performance uncertainty, they can also use their information advantages to engage in corruption, especially the type of corruption that involves collusion with colleagues and business clients. Whether to appoint insiders or outsiders is a function of balancing the risk of performance uncertainty and collusive corruption. I argue that how provincial leaders balance the trade-off depends on two factors. First, provincial leaders’ information on and connections with the candidates of appointees help mitigate the problems of adverse selection and moral hazard. When provincial leaders lack information and connections, they prioritize reducing corruption risks over performance uncertainty by appointing more agency heads without inside-agency experience. Second, according to the delegation model, increased monitoring capacity should alleviate provincial leaders’ concerns about corruption risks at the appointment stage. However, authoritarian monitoring has distinctive features, including top-down control, uncertainty, and intra-party propaganda, that could lead provincial leaders to take more preventive measures by appointing more agency heads without inside-agency experience. Finally, I emphasize that the theoretical framework is more applicable to appointments in important agencies with high corruption risks. I built an original dataset of China’s provincial government agency heads appointed from 1978 to 2020. To my best knowledge, this is the first systematic dataset on China’s sub-national government agency heads. I use provincial party secretaries’ in-province time before making appointment decisions as a proxy for their information on and connections with sub-provincial bureaucrats. I leverage Xi Jinping’s anti-corruption campaign starting from late 2012 as an example that successfully strengthened the party’s monitoring capacity with the authoritarian approach. I categorize important agencies with high corruption risks based on both existing studies and a self-constructed index. I use the agencies that are not high-profile high-risk as the “control” group. The empirical results provide supportive evidence to the theory. First, I find that when provincial party secretaries’ in-province time is short, they are more likely to appoint agency heads without prior experience inside the agency in the high-profile high-risk agencies. Second, I find that after Xi Jinping’s anti-corruption campaign, provincial leaders appointed more agency heads without prior inside-agency experience in the high-profile high-risk agencies. This study makes four contributions. First, it contributes to the literature on bureaucratic embeddedness by providing and empirically testing a theoretical framework that explains how political leaders deal with the dilemma of bureaucratic embeddedness in appointments. Second, it contributes to the literature on delegation by unpacking how the mechanisms work differently in an authoritarian regime. Third, it contributes to the literature on state capacity by showing that authoritarian regimes face inherent contradictions in building state capacity. Finally, this study contributes to the literature on bureaucratic appointments in China by providing a strategic explanation for what hinders the Chinese bureaucracy toward a Weberian direction.
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    American Populism, Political Information, and Trade Opinion
    (2022) Campana, Robert David Louis; Gimpel, James G.; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)
    Trade policy is a complex issue that involves economics and international politics. Traditionally, Americans have not often expressed opinions on trade policy due to its high issue complexity and because Democrats and Republican politicians since the later part of the 20th century have been inconsistent in their support for neoliberalism or protectionism. Despite this, populist candidates like Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump have repeatedly used their support for protectionist policies to differentiate themselves from more mainstream candidates. Using multiple public opinion surveys and survey experiments, this project explores how populism, anti-expert sentiment, anti-capitalism, diversity anxiety, and ethnonationalism influence American’s views on free trade policy and shows that all these factors are associated with greater support for protectionist policies. Additionally, this project examines and adjusts for the unusually high level of non-response regarding questions about trade policy.This project also analyzes what causes Americans to think trade policy (specifically, the withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Partnership) is more important. This project finds that Americans who believe themselves to be strangers in their own country are more likely to believe the withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific partnership is important. Meanwhile, Americans who believe the United States is less respected than in the past are less likely to believe the Trans-Pacific Partnership is important. Two survey experiments are conducted to see how the presence of “don’t know” responses in trade opinion questions and patriotic framing shift attitudes on trade policy. In both cases, issue framing does not significantly shift opinion on trade policy. This project carries out a longitudinal study to see how the same group of Americans shift their attitudes on trade policy over a multi-year time frame. Generally, these shifts are very small; however, Americans with differing views on regulation displayed the greatest attitudinal shift. Initially, Americans who wanted more government regulation were the most protectionist while Americans who wanted less government regulation were the least protectionist. Over the multi-year period, this association became significantly less visible. Finally, this project analyzes how economic attitudes, immigration attitudes, economic identity, immigrant identity, local immigrant populations, and local economic data influence views on trade policy. The study finds that immigration attitudes are closely aligned with views of trade policy.
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    Violent Democracies: Essays on Crime, Inequality and Preferences for Protection in Latin America
    (2021) Da Silva Ventura, Tiago Augusto; Calvo, Ernesto; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)
    My dissertation collects four papers investigating changes in political behavior in violent and unequal societies. These four independent, but theoretically interconnected papers, work around three main questions: how do citizens form preferences about security policies when stressed about risks of crime victimization? How does exposure to crime interact with income differences to explain citizens' preferences for police allocation and voting behavior? How do these concerns ultimately enter into the electoral arena via support for candidates campaigning on tough-on-crime policies? I integrate these questions across my four papers with a general theory considering both the micro-level dynamics behind preferences for security policies, and the supply of politicians framing the menu of security policies available to voters. My first chapter brings together fine-grained observational data and an endorsement experiment to understand the effect of crime victimization and partisanship on voting for law and order candidates for legislative elections in Brazil. My second chapter develops an insurance model to explain preferences for crime deterrence policies and uses a behavioral experiment to assess the model's empirical implications. The third chapter uses computational text analysis on a corpus with more than one hundred thousand Congressional speeches to discuss issue ownership and how politicians use their professional history in law enforcement agencies as informational heuristics about their security preferences. The fourth chapter uses novel network models and a conjoint design to uncover the effects of exposure to criminal violence on citizens' preferences in Mexico using a conjoint design. Chapter one shows that a local exogenous crime shocks right before the election increases the vote share of law-and-order candidates in cities more afflicted by violence. This effect is only present in municipalities with more robust support for more conservative presidential candidates and driven mainly by wealthier voters. Experimental results converge with macro-level results. Chapter two's main finding shows with experimental data that income and fear of crime follow a positive joint distribution, making wealthier respondents with high fear of crime more supportive of greater levels of police allocation on high-crime and low-income geographical areas. Chapter three shows that occupation on law enforcement explains which politicians "own" the issue of security in the Brazilian Congress. To conclude, using a conjoint design, chapter four finds that higher exposure to crime using network information increases support for punitive policies and candidates previously employed in the local police forces. Chapter four's findings combine new models to measure crime exposure, using information from respondents' friendship networks and a conjoint candidate-choice design. My dissertation contributes empirically and theoretically to deepen our understanding of preferences for protection in violent and unequal democracies. My most general result provides observational and experimental evidence for a positive joint distribution between income and risk. This dynamic explain how wealthy voters in Latin America form the main electoral and social support behind the emergence of populist, iron-fist politicians in the continent.
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    Political Economy of the Third World Bilateralism
    (1984) Moon, Chung-in; Pirages, Dennis; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md)
    The birth and development of extensive bilateral economic ties between Korea and Saudi Arabia, as we explained in Chapter Four, depended only partly on a set of preconditions conducive to the rise of such bilateralism. Industrial complementarity shaped by the precise timing of development sequencing provided both countries with various economic incentives to cooperate with each other. At the same time, their structural position in the international division of labor and the constraints resulting therefrom, combined with endogenous political and economic factors, had induced political elites of both countries to share a certain strategic consensus in their foreign economic policy which nurtured a feeling of mutual necessity. In this sense, it can be argued that both Saudi Arabia and Korea were endowed with a set of necessary conditions to promote bilateral ties. However, the mere existence of these necessary conditions alone does not offer a satisfactory explanation for the dynamic interactive processes which evolved around the Saudi Arabian-Korean connection. Certainly these preconditions define the parameters of the structure of bilateral interaction between two countries in terms of economic and political factors (i.e., comparative advantage and price, structural position in the international economic system and the range of policy choice, and domestic decision-making structure and the level of bilateral preference). It is from these preconditions that we can deduce a set of causal conditions leading to the rise of bilateral ties. Nevertheless, the process-level dynamics and the mechanisms through which this bilateral connection developed are not explained in these preconditions. In this connection, Chapter Two asserted that "the channel and process-level dynamics of inter-South bilateralism are a function of entrepreneurial dynamism (private) in general and the nature of business -state relationship in particular." In other words, since private entrepreneurs carry out economic transactions between two countries, it is essential to examine the role of private entrepreneurship in the evolution of the Saudi Arabian- Korean connection. Under standing the nature of entrepreneurial dynamism within the bilateral setting is not an easy task. However, Chapter Two identifies four behavioral and structural factors associated with business practices of private entrepreneurs: perception or monitoring capability of new markets, overall entry conditions in new markets, market penetration strategy, and the nature of a business connection as a structural determinant of the effectiveness of market penetration. This chapter's hypothesis is that the keener the perception of the new market the more effective the penetration strategy, and the more extensive the magnitude of business connections, the higher the level of bilateral economic transactions. once caveat is in order, however. The entrepreneurial dynamism involved in the Saudi-Korean connection is chiefly one way, rather than two way. While Korean businessmen were anxious to get into the Saudi market, Saudi entrepreneurs were less interested in Korea because their involvement with Korea was solely based on oil exports which did not require entrepreneurial efforts. We focus primarily, therefore, on the entrepreneurial dynamism exhibited by Korean businessmen and on the receptivity of Saudi entrepreneurs.
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    Design for Decline: Executive Management and the Eclipse of NASA
    (1982) Petrovic, Nancy; Elkin, Stephen; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md)
    This study examines the organizational development of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration from the creation of its parent organization in 1915 through the 1960s. It focuses especially on the relationships which the organization's leadership established with external groups and individuals, as well as with its own employees . The dissertation intends to: provide a more adequate explanation of NASA's decline than currently exists; gain some insight into the management of research and development organizations within the federal government; and determine the utility of using different theoretical perspectives for exploring how organizations change. The findings from the case study are related to existing theories of organizations, and different explanations of NASA's decline are evaluated. Among the various reasons identified for NASA's decline, management's maladroit handling of several potentially conflicting organizational goals figures prominently. Steady decline in agency appropriation levels after 1965, coupled with the lack of widely agreed upon criteria to evaluate its technical and management decisions, produced in NASA a striking example of an organization unable to successfully adapt to changes in its external and internal environment.
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    Between Global and Local Standards: The Adoption of Global Green Bond Standards in China
    (2021) Lin, Jiun-Da; Pearson, Margaret; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)
    This dissertation analyzes the political economy of green bonds and global green bond standards in China. This research explains two puzzles: (1) Why did China’s green bond market grow faster than other emerging economies? (2) Why do some Chinese green bond issuers comply with international standards – the Green Bond Principles (GBP) or the Climate Bonds Standard (CBS), while others do not? Regarding the first question, this study argues that state capitalism, transnational climate governance, and support from top-level leadership are critical driving forces of the rapid development of green finance in China. In answering the second question, the variation in Chinese green bond issuers’ compliance with international standards is determined by domestic regulatory agencies’ preferences, firms’ ties, and firm characteristics. Specifically, bond issuers will be more likely to comply with GBP and CBS when (1) domestic regulators encourage compliance with global standards or (2) the issuers have more political connections or Western linkages. Moreover, this study finds that firms’ Western linkages could further moderate the effect of regulators’ preferences.
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    A Collection of Red States and Blue States: Out-Party Threat and Contemporary State Lawmaking
    (2021) Miras, Nicholas Scott; Rouse, Stella M; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)
    How does the balance of partisan control at the national level influence state politics? Unlike decades past, partisan control of the federal government is now virtually up for grabs in every election. As a result, when one side manages to gain unified control of the presidency and Congress, they face strong partisan incentives to actually act on their agenda. This is deeply problematic for those in the minority. Not only do they have little control over the national policymaking process, but their past policy achievements and favored programs are jeopardized by the majority. Outside of Washington, this political context also has implications for state lawmakers. Unlike national politics, unified control of state governments has reached historic levels, with 38 states under unified government (as of September 2021)---up from a low of 19 states in 1998. Meanwhile, average seat margins in state legislatures have expanded considerably, with veto-proof majorities also reaching all-time highs. As a consequence, majority-party lawmakers are increasingly free to run their states in a way that is consistent with their party’s governing philosophy, with little to no resistance. In this dissertation, I advance a theory of contemporary state policymaking centered on the idea of out-party threat, in which majority-party lawmakers---guided by electoral considerations---exhibit more partisan policy activism as their state’s policy preferences are increasingly threatened by federal action from the opposing party. As the balance of national partisan control changes, so does this out-party threat, which, in turn, re-calibrates the political calculus for state lawmakers. I test my theory by examining state lawmaking from 2001 to 2019, a period during which the federal government oscillated between unified and divided partisan control. Using data on bill introduction and enactment across twelve of the most common policy areas in state politics, I find that more threatening political contexts lead to higher volumes of bills introduced in states controlled by the national out-party, particularly in policy areas more important to the party's base and in states that are less nationally competitive. Only among Democratic-controlled states, however, does this heightened volume actually translate into more bills enacted into law. These results serve to re-shape our understanding of contemporary state policymaking and federal-state relations, shedding light not only on why states may choose to engage in partisan policy activism, but under which national political conditions.
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    How Rebels Get What They Want
    (2021) McWeeney, Margaret; Cunningham, Kathleen G; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)
    This dissertation examines the often-unseen nonviolent world of nonviolence in armed rebellion. Although states often act and react to violent rebellion, recent research has highlighted nonviolent, governance and service activities rebels take on for survival of their organization. However, little is known about the effects of these behaviors. Theorizing a new category of rebel activity called legitimacy-seeking nonviolence, I show the ways that rebels peacefully “get what they want.” Legitimacy-seeking nonviolence works by reducing concerns over information and commitment that keep rebels and states from reaching a mutually-beneficial bargain. In the following papers, I highlight three behaviors, diplomacy, local interdependence networks, and peace enforcement via gender inclusion, that rebels used that facilitate successful negotiations and durable peace with the state in Southeast Asia. In concluding, this dissertation asks scholars, academics, and policymakers to rethink traditional conceptions of rebels, violence, and conflict and outline scenarios where giving in to some demands would be preferable to continued violence.
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    Taking Perspective: A Theory of Prejudice Reduction and Political Attitudes
    (2021) Safarpour, Alauna C.; Hanmer, Michael; Banks, Antoine; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)
    This dissertation develops and tests Engagement, Perspective-Taking, and Re-calibration (EPR), a theory of how to reduce prejudice and its consequences on political attitudes. I theorize that an intervention that uses engagement to encourage perspective-taking reduces prejudice and re-calibrates the subject’s attribution of blame for America’s racial problems. This last step, “re-calibration,” shifts the target of blame from out-group members to the forces of racism and discrimination which alters political attitudes rooted in prejudice. I employ my theory of EPR to develop interventions to reduce anti-Black prejudice among U.S. citizens using online perspective-taking tasks. The interventions encourage participants to adopt the perspective of an African American individual who experiences racial prejudice and make choices regarding how to respond to the bias they encounter. Interventions designed according to EPR theory were evaluated in three randomized experiments in which participants completed either the perspective-taking treatment or a placebo task. I find that participation in the perspective-taking task significantly reduces multiple forms of racial prejudice including racial resentment, negative affect, and belief in anti-Black stereotypes. The largest effects were among those with the highest levels of baseline prejudice. These studies also show that reducing prejudice increases support for policies that would help African Americans, including government assistance to Blacks, additional changes to ensure racial equality, affirmative action, and reparations for slavery. Similarly, reducing prejudice increases support for the belief that Blacks are not treated fairly in American society, increases support for policing reforms, and increases support for the Black Lives Matter protests against police violence. My results demonstrate that a substantial amount of opposition to racial policies is rooted in racial animus. But neither animus nor opposition to racial policies are immutable, reducing prejudice through my technique increases support for policies to redress racial inequities. This dissertation offers two empirically evaluated interventions that may be used as low-cost bias reduction trainings to combat the rising hate-related incidents in the United States. More broadly, my results provide insight into the nature of racial prejudice and its impact on political attitudes.
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    (2021) Partridge, Diana M; Telhami, Shibley; Government and Politics; Digital Repository at the University of Maryland; University of Maryland (College Park, Md.)
    Why do some social movements become sustained while others fade away? Is it chance, the strength of the grievances, the type of claims, access to resources, or some other movement feature? Current social movement theory focuses on what sparks social movements rather than what sustains them. Yet arguably, social movements can achieve more profound and long-lasting change when they endure, while short-lived movements are more prone to bring about cosmetic change. This dissertation refocuses on how social movement organization (SMO) decision-making affects SMO sustainability. I argue that SMOs that use community-anchored decision-making processes are more adept at survival because these processes bolster the SMO’s legitimacy; foster interpersonal trust among activists; provide the SMO a modus operandi for how to continue operations during challenging times, and increase the changes the SMO has a contingency plan; and slow the onset of collective action burnout. These four mechanisms render SMOs more resilient to organizational disruption and deterrence from the authorities, increasing the likelihood of SMO survival. By contrast, SMOs that use decision-making processes unanchored in the community are more vulnerable to disruption and deterrence. Community-anchored decision-making processes are not synonymous with highly participatory movements, robust solidarity among activists, or even strong community. A movement can have all these features and still have unanchored decision-making processes, highlighting that not all strong communities are equal in their ability to sustain collective action. I test my hypotheses with case material from contemporary North African social movements. Based on dozens of interviews with social movement activists, journalists, academics, and officials; SMO statements; and government documents and secondary source material, I find strong support for the first and second hypotheses, moderate support for the third, and minimal support for the fourth. The results indeed suggest that SMOs’ decision-making processes affect their survival.