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Full-Text Articles in Political Science

Women In Kazakhstan: A Multifaceted Approach To Female Political Representation, Ashley Gaile Benedict Dec 2014

Women In Kazakhstan: A Multifaceted Approach To Female Political Representation, Ashley Gaile Benedict

Dissertations

This investigation focuses on two competing theories (historical institutionalism and social constructivism) and their explanatory value in regards to female political representation in Kazakhstan. Historical Institutionalism maintains that current institutional dynamics are constrained by past institutional formations, even when these past institutions are no longer relevant. Social Constructivism challenges this theory by upholding that institutions are culturally situated and a reflection of shared ideas rather than material forces as argued by historical institutionalism. Based on Hanna Pitkin’s (1967) four dimensions of representation (formal, descriptive, substantive, and symbolic), I examine how Kazakhstan’s Soviet past and its creation of a ...


Who Decides? A Study Of The Effects On Decision Unit Dynamics In Crisis And Crisis Transition, Janet Leigh Drake Dec 2014

Who Decides? A Study Of The Effects On Decision Unit Dynamics In Crisis And Crisis Transition, Janet Leigh Drake

Dissertations

Foreign policy decision-making is often an obscured process, particularly when it involves threats to national security or national interests. Despite the lack of transparency, though sometimes necessary, foreign policy decisions can have far-reaching consequences. Policymakers establish and affect relationships with other governments, and can commit state resources for cooperation or for conflict. The purpose of this study is to determine what types of decision units make foreign policy decisions and what factors influence the dynamics of the unit. I employ the decision units (DU) framework developed by Margaret Hermann to decisions made by the United States and Israel during the ...


The Natural Resource Curse In Sub-Saharan Africa: Transparency And International Initiatives, Meaza Zerihun Demissie Dec 2014

The Natural Resource Curse In Sub-Saharan Africa: Transparency And International Initiatives, Meaza Zerihun Demissie

Dissertations

The Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) region has become a classic case of the resource-curse phenomenon characterized by the abundance of natural resources, low economic development, and misuse of natural resources. Economic-development experts debate ways to overcome or avoid the resource curse to advance SSA countries into developed countries. Only one natural resource-rich country in the region, Botswana, has succeeded in becoming an upper middle-income country using its natural resources, making the possibility of replication of this achievement difficult. The literature aligns in the belief that the economic and political well-being of resource-rich nations depends highly on the actors involved. National and ...


Vision 2020: An Analysis Of Policy Implementation And Agrarian Change In Rural Rwanda, Sterling Recker Aug 2014

Vision 2020: An Analysis Of Policy Implementation And Agrarian Change In Rural Rwanda, Sterling Recker

Dissertations

In 2000, President Paul Kagame introduced a plan to alleviate poverty as well as to maintain political control over the policy process through a decentralized bureaucracy. Since adoption of Vision 2020 in 2000, Rwanda has been reforming its rural sector to commercialize agriculture, reduce pressures on land, and move the country into middle income status by the year 2020. In order to achieve the goals outlined in Vision 2020, the Government of Rwanda (GoR) adopted a policy of administrative decentralization in 2001 to facilitate the transition from subsistence to commercial agriculture. I am addressing two related questions: 1) How has ...


Mediated Homestyle: Congressional Strategy And Local Press Relations In The 111th House Of Representatives, Michael K. Romano Aug 2014

Mediated Homestyle: Congressional Strategy And Local Press Relations In The 111th House Of Representatives, Michael K. Romano

Dissertations

For over thirty years, research on Congressional behavior has provided evidence of a link between constituent opinions and the ways in which members publically conduct themselves. Homestyle (Fenno, 1978: pg. 32), the way members “cultivate their constituencies,” has emphasized that personal encounters between members and their constituents is an effective strategy for decreasing the level of uncertainty members have about their approval. Homestyle, however, overlooks the fact that members of Congress cannot directly interact with their constituents on a daily basis. The mass media, specifically local media outlets, help legislators by transmitting relevant information about political events and legislators’ actions ...


The State And Civil Society In The Arab Middle East, Stacey E. Pollard Aug 2014

The State And Civil Society In The Arab Middle East, Stacey E. Pollard

Dissertations

While the notion that civil society organizations can democratize authoritarian regimes from below has become an article of faith among many policy makers and democracy promoters, some area experts warn that practitioners and advocates should not overestimate civil society's democratizing role. This dissertation challenges a large body of scholarship on civil society by arguing that while civil society may constitute a democratic force in any given polity it may also be comprised of less democratic, even radically undemocratic forces as well. Therefore, commensurate with the research yielding that finding, this project argues that on an account of the nature ...


Privatization, State Militarization Through War, And Durable Social Exclusion In Post-Soviet Armenia, Anna Martirosyan Jul 2014

Privatization, State Militarization Through War, And Durable Social Exclusion In Post-Soviet Armenia, Anna Martirosyan

Dissertations

In the literature focusing on various aspects of the twin transitions from socialism, development and social well-being are mainly analyzed with respect to privatization process (Stark and Bruszt 1998, Applegate 1994); economic growth and institutional design (North 1990; Elster, Offe, and Preuss 1998; Kolodko 1999; Norgaard 2000); party and election politics, the development of social networks and deliberative associations (Stark and Bruszt 1998); and the bargaining power of labor (Bandelj and Mahutga 2005). While the importance of these factors is not underestimated, this study addresses a significantly understudied theme – social exclusion as a consequence of overweening state power. The problem ...


Like Oil And Water: How Federalism Muddies The Waters Of Interest Group Decision-Making, Melissa Shaffer-O’Connell Jun 2014

Like Oil And Water: How Federalism Muddies The Waters Of Interest Group Decision-Making, Melissa Shaffer-O’Connell

Dissertations

Federalism often creates additional decisions for interest groups in determining how best to advocate for their policy recommendations in the legislative process. Should they focus their advocacy at the local, state, or national level of government? What activities should they use at each level of government? This dissertation examines interest group behaviors in water quality policy in the Great Lakes region from 1940 to 2000, in oil policy in the Beaufort Sea region from 1970 to 2000, and in both policy areas in 2010-2013. I evaluate the reasons for interest group decisions in choice of tactics and targeted level of ...


Development From Abroad? Transnational Remittance And The Institutionalization Of Diaspora Engagement In Africa., Todd Bryan Combs May 2014

Development From Abroad? Transnational Remittance And The Institutionalization Of Diaspora Engagement In Africa., Todd Bryan Combs

Dissertations

This dissertation investigates the impacts of transnational remittances and the institutionalization of diaspora engagement on development in Africa. Remittances to Africa are now around $50 billion annually and larger than inflows of foreign aid and investment. African governments continue to realize the potential contributions of their diasporas to development through not only remittances but through skills, expertise-sharing, and coordination of efforts. In 2000, four African countries had national-level institutions nominally dedicated to the diaspora and its potential to effect development: now 36 of the 54 governments have such an institution. An assessment of the political economy of remittances and governmental ...


Cities Awash In A Sea Of Governments: How Does Political Fragmentation Affect Cities And Their Regions?, Laura E. Wiedlocher May 2014

Cities Awash In A Sea Of Governments: How Does Political Fragmentation Affect Cities And Their Regions?, Laura E. Wiedlocher

Dissertations

Is political fragmentation within the metropolitan area and within central city government a cause of central city decline or just the benign evolution of governance? Advocates of regional governance consider political fragmentation, the number and types of governments in a metropolitan area, a causal factor in decline. However a multiplicity of governments offer individual households greater choice and variety, in other words fragmentation represents the will of the people. All metropolitan areas are fragmented to some degree and whether or not this is harmful to cities and their regions is the empirical question considered. Political explanations on the impact of ...