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 Degree Discipline: Political Science
Determinants of International Terrorist Group Formation, 1968-1999

Determinants of International Terrorist Group Formation, 1968-1999

Date: December 2007
Creator: Worrell, Blake
Description: Terrorism has become a focus of much political thought over the past few years, and with good reason, yet most quantitative studies of terrorism investigate the likelihood of a terrorist incident while ignoring the precursors to terrorist group formation. I examine cases of new terrorist group formations between the years 1968 and 1999 as a function of domestic demographic, geographic, governmental and societal factors. This is done by Poisson regression analysis, which determines the significance of the independent variables on a count of new international terrorist group formations per country year. The results indicate that higher levels of material government capability, high levels of political freedom, the availability of low-cost refuge, and a cultural tradition of terrorism all have a positive impact on the number of new terrorist group formations, while a higher degree of governmental durability has a negative impact.
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Developing Capacity: The IMF's Impact on State Capacity

Developing Capacity: The IMF's Impact on State Capacity

Date: December 2006
Creator: Harper, Christine
Description: The purpose of this thesis is to examine the impact of International Monetary Fund (IMF) loans since the adoption of the governance mandate on overall government capability. The study will explore whether the presence of IMF loans in developing countries enhances state capacity. Administrative capacity is of particular importance because it is a requisite for the integration of state and society in the national political arena and encourages joint involvement of government and citizenry in overall representation of societal interests. The model designed to test the two primary hypotheses is comprised of a simultaneous system of equations. Despite criticisms of IMF conditionality arrangements, it appears that these programs are largely effective at increasing administrative capacity, an important factor in achieving economic growth and national ownership of IMF development programs.
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The Dichotomy of Congressional Approval

The Dichotomy of Congressional Approval

Date: August 2010
Creator: Moti, Danish Saleem
Description: This thesis seeks to understand how political awareness affects what information one uses to indicate their approval or disapproval of Congress and its members. More concisely, do more and less aware individuals rely on the same pieces of political information to mold their opinions of Congress? The second question of concern is what role does media consumption play in informing survey respondents about Congress. Third, I consider how survey respondents use cues like the condition of the economy and presidential job performance to help formulate their opinion of Congress Finally, by applying the Congressional approval literature to incumbent level approval, I seek to advance the theory and literature on what motivates the approval of incumbents.
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Discovery of Resources and Conflict in the Interstate System, 1816-2001

Discovery of Resources and Conflict in the Interstate System, 1816-2001

Date: May 2010
Creator: Clark, Bradley
Description: This study tests a theory detailing the increased likelihood of conflict following an initial resource discovery in the discovering nation and its region. A survey of prior literature shows a multitude of prior research concerning resources and nations' willingness to initiate conflict over those resources, but this prior research lacks any study concerning the effects of the discovery of resources on interstate conflict. The theory discusses the increased likelihood of conflict in the discovering nation as both target and initiator. It further looks at the increased chance of conflict in the discoverer's region due to security dilemmas and proxy wars. The results show strong support for the theory, suggesting nations making new resource discoveries must take extra care to avoid conflict.
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Do As They Say, and As They Do: An Integrated Approach to the Study of Norm Influence on Truth Commission Initiation, 1976-2003

Do As They Say, and As They Do: An Integrated Approach to the Study of Norm Influence on Truth Commission Initiation, 1976-2003

Date: August 2006
Creator: Dancy, Geoffrey Thomas
Description: Truth commissions are bodies established in political transition, and they have the stated purpose of reckoning with human rights abuses committed by members of former regimes. The question driving this research is "Why have truth commissions increased so rapidly in the last 20 years?" This study moves beyond current research, which suggests that particular domestic political circumstances alone determine choice of transitional justice mechanisms. I argue that an international rule of behavior, the transitional restorative norm, has emerged and spread to decision-makers in countries of transition. In support of this notion, I perform a pre-theoretical historical analysis of transitional justice and develop a theory of decision-making in transition-which is later tested with quantitative statistics. This integrated approach allows for increased scientific rigor in the examination of international norms. Ultimately, the study demonstrates an interrelationship between shared ideas and political environments in the determination of domestic policy.
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Do different political regime types use foreign aid differently to improve human development?

Do different political regime types use foreign aid differently to improve human development?

Date: December 2009
Creator: Phan, Thu Anh
Description: Existing literature on foreign aid does not indicate what type of political regime is best to achieve human development outcomes or use aid funds more efficiently. I contend that political leaders of different regime types have personal incentives that motivate them to utilize foreign aid to reflect their interests in providing more or less basic social services for their citizens. Using a data set of 126 aid-recipient countries between the years of 1990 and 2007, I employ fixed effects estimation to test the model. The overall results of this research indicate that foreign aid and democratic institutionalization have a positive effect on total enrollment in primary education, while political regime types show little difference from one another in providing public health and education for their citizens.
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Does Euroscepticism Matter? the Effect of Public Opinion on Integration

Does Euroscepticism Matter? the Effect of Public Opinion on Integration

Date: December 2012
Creator: Williams, Christopher J.
Description: This dissertation seeks to test the proposition that public opinion is a driving force in integration, and thus examines the effect of euroscepticism on EU integration. Utilizing an understanding of integration as the process of European states achieving similar legal, social, cultural, political and economic policy outcomes while ceding greater policy power to European institutions, the relationship between aggregate level euroscepticism in EU member states (the United Kingdom, Germany, Ireland, Greece, Spain, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Austria, and Sweden) and speed of compliance with EU policies is examined. More specifically, this dissertation examines the relationship between aggregate level euroscepticism in an EU member state, and the speed at which that state transposes EU directives. In testing this relationship a number of contextual conditions are examined, including the role of issue salience, domestic party systems, and electoral conditions. The findings of this dissertation suggest that the widely held belief that public opinion is driving European integration may be false.
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Does Natural Resource Wealth Spoil and Corrupt Governments? A New Test of the Resource Curse Thesis

Does Natural Resource Wealth Spoil and Corrupt Governments? A New Test of the Resource Curse Thesis

Date: August 2004
Creator: Petrovsky, Nicolai
Description: Countries with rich natural resource endowments suffer from lower economic growth and various other ills. This work tests whether the resource curse also extends to the quality of regulation and the level of corruption. A theoretical framework is developed that informs the specification of interactive random effects models. A cross-national panel data set is used to estimate these models. Due to multicollinearity, only an effect of metals and ores exports on corruption can be discerned. Marginal effects computations show that whether nature corrupts or not crucially depends on a country's institutions. A broad tax base and high levels of education appear to serve as inoculations for countries against the side-effects of mineral wealth.
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Domestic influences for interstate cooperation: Do domestic conditions affect the occurrence of cooperative events in democratic regimes?

Domestic influences for interstate cooperation: Do domestic conditions affect the occurrence of cooperative events in democratic regimes?

Date: August 2004
Creator: Yi, Seong-Woo
Description: This research addressed two main issues that have become evident in studies of interstate cooperation. The first issue has to do with the relationship between cooperation and conflict. Can they be represented on a single, uni-dimensional continuum, or are they better represented by two theoretically and empirically separable dimensions? Granger causality tests were able to clarify the nature of cooperative events. The second issue is related to factors that might facilitate or discourage cooperation with other countries as a foreign policy tool. Factors used to explain cooperation and conflict include domestic variables, which have not been fully accounted for in previous empirical analyses. It is hypothesized that economic variables, such as inflation rates, GDP, and manufacturing production indices affect the likelihood of cooperative event occurrences. The effect of political dynamics, such as electoral cycles, support rates and national capability status, can also affect the possibility of cooperative foreign policies. The domestic factors in panel data was tested with Feasible Generalized Least Square (FGLS) in order to take care of heteroscedasticity and autocorrelations in residuals. The individual case analysis used linear time series analysis.
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The Domestic Politics of Entering International Communities: An Exploratory Analysis

The Domestic Politics of Entering International Communities: An Exploratory Analysis

Date: May 2003
Creator: Radin, Dagmar
Description: In the last thirty years, there has been a significant increase in the globalization process, or as other refer to it, the internationalization, free trade, or liberalization. This trend was reflected in the increasing number of newly formed international organization (economic and security) as well as in the increased membership in the already existing ones. The evidence of this trend has been particularly visible since the end of the Cold War, when the race of the Eastern European countries to enter international organizations has been as competitive as ever. Nonetheless, a number of countries, upon careful evaluation and consideration of membership, has opted out of the opportunity to enter such international agreements. The question that this paper addresses is how do countries decided whether to enter or not international organizations? In other words, what elements, processes, and motives lie behind the decision of countries to commit to a new membership? Most of the studies that have addressed this topic have done so from an international perspective as they addressed the politics between countries, as well as the costs and benefits in terms of power, sovereignty, and national income once in the organizations. This paper, on the other hand, approaches the ...
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