QP LIVE! Where to Find Us at MPSA 2014

It's the time of year that I affectionately call "conference season," i.e. the springtime one-two punch of the annual meetings of the International Studies Association and the Midwest Political Science Association.  This week, thousands of political scientists will descend upon Chicago hoping to learn about new research, present some research of their own, and/or connect with old friends and new colleagues.  Your trusty bloggers here at the Quantitative Peace will be among those making the trek, so, in case you are interested in seeing the kind of stuff we work on when we're not blogging, I've put together a schedule Continue reading QP LIVE! Where to Find Us at MPSA 2014

Troop Deployment Research and Poland

Interstate conflict is a rare phenomenon. Since 1816, the Correlates of War project only counts 96 different wars occurring over an almost 200 year period.  Given Russia’s incursion into the Crimean peninsula, it is of little surprise that IR scholar blogging activity has been rampant the past week; we may just have conflict 97 just around the corner. It is of little surprise that Ukraine is on the forefront of our discussions across twitter, blogs, and other forms of social media.  It is an intellectually ripe ground for explanation, prediction, and is an important teaching tool for me.  In the classroom, the Continue reading Troop Deployment Research and Poland

Monkey Cage APSA Survey

Given that there is a hurricane that is currently headed for the city of New Orleans—a city which also happens to be hosting the 2012 annual meeting of the American Political Science Association—this poll at the Monkey Cage may be of some interest to many of you out there. There currently seems to be a lot of uncertainty regarding whether or not it is worth attending. From my limited personal experience thus far, it seems that many panels are probably no longer meeting as individuals are opting out. In any event, this might be helpful in shedding some light on Continue reading Monkey Cage APSA Survey

Human Rights and NGOs

I've been working recently on quite a few projects that deal with human rights and NGOs, and today's BBC podcast has quite a bit of material that is relevant to these topics.  First, there's a story regarding a new law that is being debated in Russia that would require NGOs receiving funding from external sources to label themselves as "foreign agents" in all of their state documentation and internet materials. The law would also increase the amount of bookkeeping required by the Russian government to allow NGOs to operate within Russia. Failure to abide by the new law's requirements would Continue reading Human Rights and NGOs

MPSA Paper, Deadly Triangles

For the Midwest Political Science Association annual convention this year, I have only one paper.  I will present a paper co-authored with Sam Bell and Chad Clay looking at the impact rivalry has on dispute escalation in asymmetric dyads.  Friday (4/13) at 4:35 pm, on the panel 18-22 Rivalry and Conflict, we will present the paper "Deadly Triangles: The Implications of Regional Competition on Demands between Asymmetric States."  Our abstract: Asymmetric war continues to be a puzzling occurrence for international relations scholars across multiple theoretical approaches.  According to realists (and other unitary-state rationalists), asymmetric war should not happen as the outcome Continue reading MPSA Paper, Deadly Triangles

ISA panels

While I am not attending ISA physically this year, I have two different papers being presented by co-authors.  As such, a bit of shameless self-promotion.   The first paper is being presented by Matt DiGiuseppe on Tuesday (4/3) at 8:15 AM in Hospitality Suite 2201 on the Economics in International Processes panel. Our paper, "Austere Alliances: Sovereign Credit and Asymmetric Alliance Formation," is a continuation of a research project that we had accepted at ISQ  recently (expected 12/2013) and seeks to understand how sovereign credit relates to defense budgets and alliance formation.  The abstract: The funding of military ventures through borrowed money has Continue reading ISA panels

Music and Academia: The Role of Colons in Titles

This post is written by Ben Farrer whose account is currently down. I’m starting to strongly dislike academic titles that take the form: “Metaphor For x: Actual Description Of x”, or similar, and am venting my frustration with a game. As an example of the type I dislike, one of my own undergraduate essays was entitled: “Holding out for a Hero? The Roles of Lincoln and of Slaves in Emancipation”. A poor effort on my part, but you get the picture. I’ve been guilty of using this template regularly myself, but I’m beginning to believe that it falls down on Continue reading Music and Academia: The Role of Colons in Titles

Let’s Rent Liechtenstein

The entire country of Liechtenstein is now up for rent. Yes, you read correctly, the entire country! It costs $70,000 a night, with a two night minimum, and there are accommodations for 900 guests. Some of the perks include being presented with the symbolic key to the state by parliament, renaming the streets and the town square, and printing your own currency with your picture on it. Even though renting the country of Liechtenstein sounds like fun, there are limits to what you can do. Unsurprisingly, you do not get to determine what type of government it has, get involved Continue reading Let’s Rent Liechtenstein


I will be flying for Chicago early Wednesday morning for the Midwest Political Science Association Conference.  This is my first co-authored paper with Julie (another contributor to his blog) and we will present the following paper Thursday morning: The contemporary rise to infamy of Blackwater Worldwide and the private corporation's misdeeds in the Iraq War has historical precedents. That is, it is not unheard of for a state to employ non-state actors to carry out traditional state activities such as the use of force – something the modernstate is supposed to have a monopoly over. In this paper, we build Continue reading MWPSA Paper

An Additional Benefit of Rapid Delivery

My teaching style, as well as my presentation style, is marked by a relatively rapid delivery.  I had favored such a style quite awhile ago for many public speaking formats as the general perception of the speaker by the audience is favorable (generally heighten perceptions of intelligence and mastery of the material).  However, now I can justify such approaches beyond my own perceived benefit and claim that I am doing my audience a favor.  That is, those who engage the presented material will tend to be happier thanks to my public service: In six experiments, researchers at Princeton and Harvard Continue reading An Additional Benefit of Rapid Delivery