Aggregating Predictions for 2008

On October 7th, a peer of mine collected 20 surveys from self-selected (volunteered) members of the political science department (from first year graduate students to professors) on an electoral challenge.  The survey presented seventeen different questions in regards to electoral outcomes and those who were able to predict the most accurately 14 of the 17 questions (with 3 of the questions serving as tie breakers) win an undisclosed prize for the top performer.  There is no prize awarded for second place. This is neither a random sample nor a sample of electoral experts, but instead represents a combination of strategic Continue reading Aggregating Predictions for 2008

Leadership Age and Experience

I am currently finishing up some slides at the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton “International” airport on my way to the Annual Peace Science Conference.  However, given the recent airtime given to Biden’s comments about Obama being tested during the first six months, it worth mentioning two political science articles that have addressed this. First, Horrowitz et. al. (2006) argue, looking at Militarized Interstate Disputes, that as the leaders age increases, they are more likely to start and escalate militarized disputes.  It is only in personalized dictatorships that have the young increase the propensity for conflict: The results show that, in general, as the Continue reading Leadership Age and Experience

Trade Diversion defending Krugman

For those who are not regular readers of Trade Diversion, Jonathan Dingel has been providing several points of defense for Krugman against a barrage of political attacks generated solely due to the recent annoucement of his impending Nobel.  The barricade so far includes these posts: Original Defense Additional fortification Redoubt and attack The introduction to the last post is amusing in itself.  While providing insights into his work for the unfamiliar reader, it will force me to add some Krugman to my own reading list.

Would the Aragonese have chosen differently? Political Institutions in the New World

Spanish American political institutions were highly centralized during the colonial time period. I always assumed this was because the Crown wanted to have more control over how the colonies were run. However, there may be other factors that influenced the choice of highly centralized institutions in the colonies. It may be that centralized political institutions were chosen over less centralized ones because the Castilian Spaniards, not the Aragonese Spaniards, initially developed the New World. More after the jump….

MPSA abstracts due today.

Just in case you were not subject to the barrage of email reminders, the deadline for Midwest Proposals is today: Call for Papers for the 67th MPSA Political Science Conference April 2-5, 2009,  Palmer House Hilton Hotel, Chicago*******************************************************************************Deadline to submit a proposal:  October 10, 2008.     Please forward this email to faculty or graduate students who may be interested. Submit a proposal to present a paper, or serve as a discussant/chair. With 900+ sessions it is one of the largest in the discipline. The conference is held in the recently renovated Palmer House Hilton. To insure you Continue reading MPSA abstracts due today.

Nostalgia for a younger internet?

Not only can you Google yourself now, but Google has made available their index for January of 2001 to help celebrate their 10th birthday.  Not only can you Google yourself, but you may be able to see some trends (though, for any correct statistical inference, you would want to control for the number of websites in existence). For example, given the past 7 years, it looks like Bayesian statistics has grown by a factor of 10. 2001, 2008. Barack Obama in 2001, 2008.John McCain in 2001, 2008. Geroge W. Bush has grown by a factor of 58 over his tenutre.

The Atlas of the Real World

The Atlas of the Real World provides a potentially powerful visual tool that re-sizes nation-states on a globe based on their rank or gravity on particular issues: The Atlas of the Real World uses software to depict the nations of the world, not by their physical size, but by their demographic importance on a range of subjects. Here, we select a series of travel- and news-related maps Starting with basic land mass, the 18-globe series has some highlights such as Net Tourism, use of airplanes, and Post-WWII war deaths. Obviously it is not a new technique, but the quality and breadth of Continue reading The Atlas of the Real World