How Legislator Professionalization Constrains Executive Decree Issuance in Latin America

This is a guest post by Alissandra T. Stoyan (Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science, Kansas State University) and Sarah Shair-Rosenfield (Assistant Professor, School of Politics and Global Studies, Arizona State University). This post is based on their article, “Constraining Executive Action: The Role of Legislator Professionalization in Latin America,” forthcoming at Governance and now available through Early View online: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/gove.12210/abstract Traditionally Latin American presidents have been viewed as excessively powerful, given both their constitutionally-endowed authority as well as their tendency to ignore the rule of law. Yet, across the region today, legislatures are asserting themselves and challenging executives. Brazilian Continue reading How Legislator Professionalization Constrains Executive Decree Issuance in Latin America

So You’re on the Job Market, Part II: Expectations (Repost-ish)

Note: This is essentially a reposting of an earlier post from 2014. I have made a few minor tweaks to the original, but it’s more or less the same post. Anyone with different backgrounds or experience is welcome to share their advice in the comments section (provided it’s constructive).  In a previous post I outlined some of the steps graduate students can take to prepare for their time on the job market. I want to emphasize again that much of this really reflects my own set of experiences and training (i.e. three years applying for tenure track jobs at research Continue reading So You’re on the Job Market, Part II: Expectations (Repost-ish)

Mapping subnational administrative areas

Between teaching classes and a couple of projects that I’ve been working on lately, I’ve been finding Stata’s spmap command to be a really useful tool for generating maps to display data. One project in particular has involved the collection of some new data for examining various developmental outcomes at the subnational level. To some extent this is new territory for me, but the idea of being able to display the geographic distribution of some of the key variables that we’re interested in was really attractive. I’ve found shapefiles for generating global maps, as well as maps of the US, but Continue reading Mapping subnational administrative areas

The Prisoner’s Dilemma in Introductory International Relations

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This semester marks my seventh time teaching the introductory course to international relations and my seventh time incorporating strategic games into the course.  A staple game for any political science course is the Prisoner’s Dilemma and a typical introduction of the material to students may have students explain the concept or, perhaps, play it with a partner.  However, this introduction is incomplete as part of the major lessons from the game (for IR anyways) is how we can use it to modify our institutions, behaviors, or norms to overcome prisoner dilemma-esque situations.  Having played this in class that range from very small Continue reading The Prisoner’s Dilemma in Introductory International Relations

Military Deployments, Human Development, and Growth

Guatemalan families wait in line outside a Medical Readiness Training Exercise during Beyond the Horizon 2014, Zacapa, Guatemala, April 21, 2014.

The deployment of US military forces has received a bump in attention over the past year or two. Most recently, as Michael Allen has discussed, US military forces were deployed to Poland in response to the deteriorating situation in Ukraine. In 2011 President Obama sent 100 US military personnel to Uganda to help track Joseph Kony, bolstering forces that were already deployed to the region. Obama recently moved to strengthen the presence of US forces in Uganda, sending aircraft and an additional 150 Air Force personnel in mid-March. According to the Washington Post article linked above, the total number of Continue reading Military Deployments, Human Development, and Growth

While the IR people are away, the Americanists will play.

Editor’s note: This is a guest post by Joshua N. Zingher, a doctoral candidate in the Department of Political Science at Binghamton University. The content of this post is based on Josh’s paper, ‘An Analysis of the Changing Social Bases of America’s Political Parties: 1952-2008’, appearing in Electoral Studies. This piece is cross-posted at the London School of Economics’ USAPP Blog, which can be found here.    Demographic changes mean that traditional Republican constituencies are shrinking as the Democrats’ grow. It is difficult to discuss electoral politics in the United States without talking in terms of social groups.  Journalistic accounts of party Continue reading While the IR people are away, the Americanists will play.

Bipartisanship and the Foreign Policy Bureaucracy

Editor’s note: A version of this piece is cross-posted at the LSE USAPP blog, and can be found here. This post is based on my recent article, The International and Domestic Sources of Bipartisanship in U.S. Foreign Policy, in Political Research Quarterly. — The idea that foreign policy and national security issues are somehow exempt from the partisan rancor that often characterizes domestic politics is perhaps best encapsulated by the old adage, “politics stops at the water’s edge.” In American foreign policy, nowhere is this spirit better exemplified than by President Franklin Roosevelt’s appointment of Henry L. Stimson as Secretary of Continue reading Bipartisanship and the Foreign Policy Bureaucracy

Incorporating Blog Consumption into the Classroom

There is currently a proposal before ISA to prevent blogging by the editorial members of ISA journals.  While there are a few posts discussing how this is professionally problematic and limits some real discussion that is happening via blog, there is one other arena such a mandate would also hurt: My classroom.   During the 2013-2014 academic year, I have been part of a teaching program at Boise State (Boise State Teaching Scholars) that aims to help early-career professors develop a more robust classroom while incorporating what we know from the scholarship on teaching and learning.  Part of my work through Continue reading Incorporating Blog Consumption into the Classroom

Historical Cartography

Uri Friedman at the Atlantic has a nice piece entitled "12 Maps that Changed the World." It's based on a book by Jerry Brotton, professor of Renaissance Studies at Queen Mary University. It's worth checking out if you haven't seen it already. This article is interesting for a few reasons. First, it gives you some sense as to how views of the earth have changed over time. Second, Friedman's snippets for each map help to show how politics, culture, and religion all influenced the evolution of these views. And related to that previous idea, it points to that ever-present issue Continue reading Historical Cartography

The Dark Knight Rises and the Economic Impact of Bane’s Occupation of Gotham

I started working on this post a long time ago and, for whatever reason, never got around to finishing it. So please keep in mind that this was largely written shortly after the film first came out. I should also disclose at the outset that this post will contain spoilers, so if there is some sort of unbelievably powerful force that has kept you from seeing this fantastic movie, please be warned. For those still interested, there’s more after the jump.