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  Partner: UNT Libraries
 Department: Department of Political Science
 Degree Level: Doctoral
 Collection: UNT Theses and Dissertations
Repression, Civic Engagement, Internet Use, and Dissident Collective Action: the Interaction Between Motives and Resources

Repression, Civic Engagement, Internet Use, and Dissident Collective Action: the Interaction Between Motives and Resources

Date: May 2012
Creator: Wu, Jun-deh
Description: This dissertation investigates three questions: First, what conditions make dissident collective action such as protest, revolt, rebellion, or civil war more likely to happen in a country? Second, what conditions make citizens more likely to join in dissident collective action? Third, does Internet use play a role in dissident collective action, and if so, why? I argue that motives and resources are necessary rather than sufficient conditions for dissident collective action. I develop an analytical framework integrating motives and resources. Specifically, I theorize that state repression is an important motive, and that civil society is critical in providing resources. Four statistical analyses are conducted to test the hypotheses. Using aggregate level data on countries over time, I find that civil war is more likely to occur in countries where both state repression and civil society are strong. Moreover, the effect of civil society on civil war onset increases as the repression level rises. at the individual level using 2008 Latin American Public Opinion Project surveys from 23 Latin American and Caribbean countries, I find individuals more likely to join in protest when they experience both more repression and greater civic engagement. Moreover, civic engagement’s effect on protest participation increases as ...
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The Road to Development is Paved With Good Institutions: The Political and Economic Implications of Financial Markets

The Road to Development is Paved With Good Institutions: The Political and Economic Implications of Financial Markets

Date: May 2008
Creator: Brown, Chelsea Denise
Description: This research seeks to identify the factors that account for the variation in development levels across nations by focusing on the institutional components of development, especially the effects of financial market development on economic and political development. I argue that financial market institutions are critical to economic and political development, and provide a partial explanation for the variation in development observed across nations. Financial market development affects political development indirectly through greater economic efficiency and growth and directly by reducing poverty, increasing economic equality, strengthening the middle class and increasing political participation. Increased financial market development also produces more efficient institutions and eliminates certain perverse incentives in government that result in corruption. The action mechanisms rest largely on the idea that increasing access to financial services allows the lower and middle- income segments of society to smooth their income and invest in high return activities that can lift people out of poverty. These improvements distribute both economic and intellectual resources throughout society and provide greater opportunities for political entrepreneurship from all societal groups. This, along with greater ability to participate either through monetary means or greater time, increases political participation and democratic development. Using a variety of econometric techniques to ...
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Service Matters: The Influence of Military Service on Political Behavior, Ideology and Attitudes

Service Matters: The Influence of Military Service on Political Behavior, Ideology and Attitudes

Date: August 2010
Creator: Johnson, Catherine L.
Description: The objective of this research is to explore the influence of military service on political behaviors and attitudes. Existing studies of the military have long recognized the existence of a predominantly conservative political ideology with a resulting propensity for strong Republican Party support within the military community, but have failed to explain the likely causal mechanism for this. Drawing on multiple sources of data from the 2008 Presidential election cycle, I utilized a descriptive analysis of campaign contribution data and bivariate and multivariate analyses of data from the 2008 Military Times Survey and the 2008 American National Election Survey. Much of the data also permitted me to analyze the effect of an individual's service branch on their attitudes as well. I examined the behavior and attitudes of the military across several dimensions, including candidate support and positions on policies of particular relevance to the military, including the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. This analysis found that people who serve in the military tend to be conservative but in many ways their political attitudes are reflective of those of the general population. An individual's race, ethnicity and gender appear to have more influence than military factors, with the exception of service ...
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Shared Norms, Hierarchical Maintenance, and International Hierarchy

Shared Norms, Hierarchical Maintenance, and International Hierarchy

Date: August 2013
Creator: Kurz, Aaron
Description: The dissertation studies two aspects of international hierarchy. The world of international politics is not one of completely sovereign states competing in anarchy. Patterns of hierarchy, where a dominant state has legitimate control over some actions of a subordinate state, color the globe. First, I look at shared norms and hierarchy. Most studies concerning hierarchy focus on material maximization as an explanation for hierarchy--if hierarchy increases the wealth and security of two states, then hierarchy is more likely. I argue that shared norms held by two states facilitate hierarchy. Shared norms produce a common in-group community, generate common interests, create common ways of doing business, and give rise to common values that increase subordinate states' ability to persuade the dominant state. These factors ease the creation and maintenance of international hierarchical relationships. Second, I study interstate behaviors that can be explained as actions of maintenance by dominant states over subordinates to preserve or increase a level of hierarchy. I theorize that sticks and carrots from a dominant state (like economic sanctions, military interventions, and foreign aid) help sustain a dominant state's rule by convincing subordinate states to follow the dominant state's commands and expectations. Using data on U.S. hierarchies from ...
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Strategic Factors Influencing the Issuance and Duration of Executive Orders

Strategic Factors Influencing the Issuance and Duration of Executive Orders

Date: August 2008
Creator: Steele, Galen
Description: Executive orders are a significant source of presidential power although scholars disagree on the nature of that power. It has been argued that executive orders are an indication of a president's failure to persuade others to act as he desires; others contend that executive orders offer "power without persuasion." This dissertation introduces the conditional model of executive order issuance and duration in order to offer a synthesis to these competing views, and to offer a better understanding of the opportunities and constraints faced by the president when choosing to act unilaterally through executive orders. The conditional theory holds that both the issuance and duration of executive orders is a function of the president's ideological proximity to Congress and the Supreme Court, and the availability of fresh policy space.
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Teachers union influence on alternative teacher certification policies: An event history diffusion analysis.

Teachers union influence on alternative teacher certification policies: An event history diffusion analysis.

Date: August 2004
Creator: Sheard, Wenda
Description: I examine the passage of alternative teacher certification policies in the states between 1975 and 2000 using event history analysis and supplementing the event history analysis with an ordinary least squares regression analysis of the strength of the alternative teacher certification policies. In order to test both teachers unions political strength external to state legislatures and teachers unions political strength internal to state legislatures, I use two variables to measure teachers union political strength. One variable measures the percentage of teachers in a state who work under union-negotiated contracts. The other variable measures the percentage of legislators in a state who list their non-legislative occupation as K-12 education. Control variables include teacher shortages, per pupil spending, legislative professionalism, divided government, democratic governor, percentage of minority students, change in percentage of minority students, an electoral threat index, and a time counter. Although the event history model results were inconclusive with respect to the teachers union political strength variables, the policy strength model results reveal that states with large percentages of teachers who work under union-negotiated contracts are more likely than other states to pass weak alternative teacher certification policies. This result supports the notion that teachers unions operate in the education ...
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The Threats to Compliance with International Human Rights Law

The Threats to Compliance with International Human Rights Law

Date: December 2011
Creator: Aloisi, Rosa
Description: In this project I investigate the factors shaping compliance with international human rights agreements and I provide a definition of compliance, which goes beyond “ratification.” I argue that compliance is a multistage process, built upon three different steps: ratification/accession, implementation, and what I call “compliant behavior.” As an alternative to the dominant structural and normative explanation of compliance, I suggest that the factors affecting compliance are not only endogenous to state characteristics, such as the democratic/non-democratic nature of governments, but also exogenous, such as the perceived level of threat to national security. I offer a twofold theory that looks at leaders’ behavior under conditions of stability and instability and I suggest that under certain circumstances that threaten and pressure government leaders, state compliance with international human rights law becomes more costly. I suggest that regardless of regime type, threats shape leaders’ behavior toward international law; states are faced with the choice to abide by international obligations, protecting specific human rights, and the choice to protect their national interests. I argue that when the costs associated with compliance increase, because leaders face threats to their power and government stability, threats become the predictor of non-compliant behavior regardless of the democratic or ...
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Too Ill to Find the Cure? - Health Care Sector Success in the New Democracies of Central and Eastern Europe

Too Ill to Find the Cure? - Health Care Sector Success in the New Democracies of Central and Eastern Europe

Date: August 2006
Creator: Radin, Dagmar
Description: This study examines the factors that have contributed to the success of some Central and Eastern European countries to improve their health care sector in the post communist period, while leaving others to its demise. While most literature has been focused on the political and economic transition of Eastern Europe, very little research has been done about the welfare aspects of the transition process, especially the health care sector. While the focus on political consequences and main macroeconomic reforms has shed light on many important processes, the lack of research of health care issues has lead to consequences on our ability to understand its impact on the future of the new democracies and their sustainability. This model looks at the impact of international (World Bank) and domestic institutions, corruption and public support and how they affect the ability of some countries to improve and reform their health care sector in the post-transition period.
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A transaction costs explanation of inter-local government collaboration.

A transaction costs explanation of inter-local government collaboration.

Date: August 2005
Creator: Krueger, Eric L.
Description: This study develops a model of collaboration choice among city governments. The theoretical model suggests that collaboration is a function of transaction costs that vary with different institutional arrangements utilized in cities, as well as the degree of competition between cities. This study argues that cities facing high transaction costs and high competition are less likely to participate in collaboration and to participate less deeply. Underlying these environmental factors are resource factors that create incentives for cities to collaborate for efficiency gains, which affect both the decision to collaboration and the depth of collaboration. Eleven hypotheses are presented to explain why cities choose to participate in collaboration in the first stage of the analysis and how deeply they collaborate in the second stage. Utilizing a Heckman model of this two-stage process, I find broad support for a number of variables that measure each of these theoretical constructs.
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Understanding News Media Consumption and Political Attitudes and Behavior in Latin America

Understanding News Media Consumption and Political Attitudes and Behavior in Latin America

Date: May 2011
Creator: Salzman, Ryan
Description: News media consumption is vital to understanding democracy in Latin America. Democracy in the region lacks consolidation that may be encouraged by the ability of news media to shape individuals' political attitudes and behaviors. Yet, we know very little about how citizens of Latin American countries consume news media or how that consumption affects attitudes and behavior. This study offers a region-wide examination of the factors that shape news media consumption and the effects of that consumption on individuals in the region. To explore this topic, I examine survey data from the 2008 Latin American Public Opinion Project in 18 Latin American countries. I argue that news media promote democratic attitudes and political behavior by increasing the symbolic value of democracy and by supplementing those symbols with information that further encourages democratic attitudes and political participation. Additionally, political behavior is not temporally proximate to political behaviors such as voting. This necessitates a mediated path for news media consumption to influence participation through political interest, civil society participation and democratic attitudes. My findings illustrate that each news medium type (TV, radio, newspaper) must be considered separately from each other type. I find that news media consumption has little effect on attitudes. ...
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