Summer WIP on July 30

Summer 2020 WIP Presents:

“Inconspicuousness in International Institutions”

Tomoko Takahashi

University of Chicago

and

“An Authoritarian Advantage?: Regime Type and External Support in Internationalized Intrastate Conflict”

Seth Harrison

University of Chicago

Thursday, July 30th: 3:30pm-5:00pm

via Zoom (password: 014962)

No papers will be circulated during the Summer Quarter Workshop Series

Persons who believe they may need assistance to attend the session should contact Elsy Gonzalez in advance to make arrangements.

The WIP Speakers Series is supported by grants from Council on Advanced Studies in the Humanities and Social Sciences and The University of Chicago Division of the Social Sciences.

Summer WIP on July 23

Summer 2020 WIP Presents:

“Tactical Learning Centers and Technological Innovation”

Robert Maxwell

University of Chicago

and

“Who stages Coups? A New Comprehensive Dataset on Coup Leaders, 1950-2019”

Bastian Herre

University of Chicago

Thursday, July 23th: 3:30pm-5:00pm

via Zoom (password: 014962)

No papers will be circulated during the Summer Quarter Workshop Series

Persons who believe they may need assistance to attend the session should contact Elsy Gonzalez in advance to make arrangements.

The WIP Speakers Series is supported by grants from Council on Advanced Studies in the Humanities and Social Sciences and The University of Chicago Division of the Social Sciences.

Summer WIP on July 16

Summer 2020 WIP Presents:

“Empirical study of the effect of WWII on U.S. foreign policy preferences”

Matthew Conklin

University of Chicago

and

“A Solution to Ethnic Rebellion? A Look at Decentralization’s Varying Impact on Group Grievances”

Narrelle Gilchrist

University of Chicago

Thursday, July 16th: 3:30pm-5:00pm

via Zoom (password: 014962)

No papers will be circulated during the Summer Quarter Workshop Series

Persons who believe they may need assistance to attend the session should contact Elsy Gonzalez in advance to make arrangements.

The WIP Speakers Series is supported by grants from Council on Advanced Studies in the Humanities and Social Sciences and The University of Chicago Division of the Social Sciences.

Summer WIP on July 9

Summer 2020 WIP Presents:

Hate Has a Home Here: Right-Wing Hate Groups 

and Threat Perceptions in the United States

Maya Van Nuys

University of Chicago

and

“Why do Nonstate Armed Groups Fight One Another? 

A Reappraisal of the UCDP Nonstate Conflict and UCDP Georeferenced Event Datasets”

Basil Bastaki

University of Chicago

Thursday, July 9th: 3:30pm-5:00pm

via Zoom (password: 014962)

No papers will be circulated during the Summer Quarter Workshop Series

Persons who believe they may need assistance to attend the session should contact Elsy Gonzalez in advance to make arrangements.

The WIP Speakers Series is supported by grants from Council on Advanced Studies in the Humanities and Social Sciences and The University of Chicago Division of the Social Sciences.

Paul Poast on July 2

Summer 2020 WIP Presents:

“Man, Russia, and War”

Paul Poast

University of Chicago

Thursday, July 2nd: 2:30pm-4:00pm

via Zoom (password: 014962)

No papers will be circulated during the Summer Quarter Workshop Series

Persons who believe they may need assistance to attend the session should contact Elsy Gonzalez in advance to make arrangements.

The WIP Speakers Series is supported by grants from Council on Advanced Studies in the Humanities and Social Sciences and The University of Chicago Division of the Social Sciences.

Austin Carson on May 28

Spring 2020 WIP Presents:

 

Off the Map: The Evolving Geographic Imaginary in American Foreign Policy

 

Austin Carson

University of Chicago

Thursday, May 28th: 3:30pm-5:00pm

via Zoom (password: 581041)

To access the paper, please contact Elsy Gonzalez at elsygonzalez@uchicago.edu.

 

Persons who believe they may need assistance to attend the session should contact Elsy Gonzalez in advance to make arrangements.

The WIP Speakers Series is supported by grants from Council on Advanced Studies in the Humanities and Social Sciences and The University of Chicago Division of the Social Sciences.

Virtual WIP on May 21

Spring 2020 WIP Presents:

 

Aid, Arms, and Advisors: Limited Intervention in Conflict

 

Alexandra C. Chinchilla

University of Chicago

Abstract: Great powers expend significant blood and treasure intervening in conflict abroad. Sometimes they intervene directly with ground combat troops, but more often rely on a local proxy to fight in exchange for support with aid, arms, and military advisors. Existing literature characterizes proxy war as either a cost-saving form of intervention or a delegation problem to be solved by conditioning aid on proxy performance. However, interveners often incur significant costs by relying on proxies unwilling or unable to support their interests, put the lives of their troops on the line by sending military advisors, and fail to use aid conditionality. Why then do great powers choose proxy war, and specifically military advisors, as a form of intervention in conflict? My argument makes two main claims. First, intervening states will delegate to unable or unwilling proxies if staying out or intervening with ground combat troops are too costly to be options. Aid conditionality will therefore be a weak tool to increase the proxy’s compliance since the intervener has no better option than proxy support. Second, even when they lack outside options, interveners seek to influence the political aims and war conduct of proxies. Military advisors, though costly, are a key tool to influence proxies through monitoring and building military capacity. In the larger project, I develop a formal model which relates kinds of support such as aid, arms, and military advisors to the proxy’s military capability and degree of alignment with the intervener’s preferences. I use this model to guide empirical analysis of novel quantitative data and case studies on US intervention in El Salvador under the Carter and Reagan administrations; Soviet intervention in Afghanistan from 1978-79 before invading; and contemporary Russian intervention in Ukraine and US intervention in Syria, from 2014 to present.

*No paper presented

and

Forcing Their Dirty Fingers into National Wounds: Strategies of Russia Today on YouTube and their Consequences for Political Polarization

 

Evgenia Olimpieva, Ipek Cinar, Geneva Cole

University of Chicago

Abstract: States invest money in media designed to reach an international audience to shape public opinion abroad. How does the messaging of state-funded media outlets differ from independent media sources in their coverage of topics, and what are their effects on domestic politics? This paper explores the choice of topics covered by Russia Today (RT) on YouTube and how framing and coverage of topics affect the viewership of the channel and the consequences these strategies have for political polarization in the United States. Using a unique dataset of all the videos published by RT on YouTube between 2015 and 2018, we employ both unsupervised learning techniques and qualitative content analysis of key videos. We find that RT focuses on the issues that are anti-institutional and polarizing in nature and invest their limited resources into coverage of countries’ major sources of polarization (or “national wounds”). The paper focuses on American audiences and on a topic directly addressing one such national wound: police brutality. RT covers police disproportionately more than other broadcasters with international audiences, and coverage of police is among the most popular content put forth by RT. This is important for polarization in American politics along both racial and partisan lines. We demonstrate that investing in covering painful and divisive subjects pays off as it drives the viewership of RT on YouTube. However, increased viewership implies increased exposure to polarizing content. This has negative consequences for polarization as previous research has demonstrated that exposure of an already polarized society to a biased media can result in even deeper polarization.

*No paper presented

Thursday, May 21st: 3:30pm-5:00pm

via Zoom (password: 581041)

To access the paper, please contact Elsy Gonzalez at elsygonzalez@uchicago.edu.

 

Persons who believe they may need assistance to attend the session should contact Elsy Gonzalez in advance to make arrangements.

The WIP Speakers Series is supported by grants from Council on Advanced Studies in the Humanities and Social Sciences and The University of Chicago Division of the Social Sciences.

Virtual WIP on May 14th

Spring 2020 WIP Presents:

 

How Bureaucrats Represent Economic Interests: Partisan Control over Trade Adjustment Assistance

 

Minju Kim

University of Chicago

Abstract: Governments adopt redistributive policies to assist those harmed by international trade. In the United States, benefits are conditioned on a technical determination that the petitioning workers were displaced by trade. However, the bureaucrats who make this decision are themselves subject to political forces. In this paper, I show how these political effects manifest in the career institutions that place the power of permanent appointments in the hands of politically appointed agency heads. To show this, I examine the 45 years of the Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) petition-level data (84, 165 petitions) and career paths of the Office of Trade Adjustment Assistance (OTAA) investigators. I find that they are less likely to certify the petitions and more likely to delay the investigations during Republican presidencies and vice versa during Democratic presidencies, especially in their first few years of careers prior to obtaining a permanent appointment. I further show these partisan effects amplify when the labor- Democratic party coalition is strong. These findings, through clarifying when and how career bureaucrats respond to policy platforms of the political parties, demonstrate the importance of the executive in shaping distributive outcomes.

and

What’s in a Name? The Use of Status Recognition as a Bargaining Signal

 

Jenna Gibson and Elsy Gonzalez

University of Chicago

Abstract: In 2017, U.S. President Donald Trump threatened to rain fire and fury upon North Korea, then embraced a policy of engagement with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un a mere year later. At the same time, the State Department shifted from referring to Kim without an official title to almost exclusively calling him “Chairman Kim,” his own preferred designation. What explains this abrupt shift in rhetoric used to confer or withhold respect and status to Kim? And what does that shift say about the bargaining position of major powers vis-a-vis their potential negotiating partner? Using text analysis of U.S. press briefings and presidential tweets regarding North Korea as our primary evidence, this paper will examine how forms of address used by a state towards another can signal shifting policy intentions long before the two parties sit down at the table. This furthers existing work on the importance of rhetorical dynamics in foreign policy and in the broader international structure, including the importance of status for diplomatic exchange.

*No paper presented

Thursday, May 14th: 3:30pm-5:00pm

via Zoom (password: 581041)

To access the paper, please contact Elsy Gonzalez at elsygonzalez@uchicago.edu.

 

Persons who believe they may need assistance to attend the session should contact Elsy Gonzalez in advance to make arrangements.

The WIP Speakers Series is supported by grants from Council on Advanced Studies in the Humanities and Social Sciences and The University of Chicago Division of the Social Sciences.

Virtual WIP on May 7th

Spring 2020 WIP Presents:

 

Politicization and Punishment

in the International Human Rights Regime

 

Rochelle Terman and Joshua Byun

University of Chicago

Abstract: By virtually all accounts, the international human rights regime is deeply politicized; violations are condemned based on geopolitical interests rather than normative principles. What factors promote politicization of global norms? This paper offers an account of politicization in the human rights regime rooted in enforcement dynamics. While enforcement or “shaming” can be costly, states also collect social benefits by defending international norms and stigmatizing offenders. As a result, geopolitical relationships shape patterns of human rights enforcement. Further, the influence of geopolitical interests becomes more pronounced as the political costs associated with a given human rights issue increase in severity. We evaluate the argument through quantitative analysis of the most elaborate human rights enforcement process in the international system: the United Nations Universal Periodic Review. We find that geopolitical adversaries are more likely to shame each other on politically costly issues that undermine the target regime’s legitimacy or its ability to rule. Friendly states, by contrast, are more likely to address safer topics in order to avoid offending the target. Our findings point to an inherent trade-off between the politicization of international human rights, on the one hand, and their weak enforcement on the other. When international norms become stronger, and the consequences attached to violations grow more severe, the incentives driving politicization intensify.

and

We’re All Mad Here?: An experimental Investigation of Determinants of Perceived Irrationality in Foreign Leaders

 

Nicholas Campbell-Seremetis

University of Chicago

Abstract: The extent to which observers believe a foreign leader is rational or irrational shapes how they approach strategic interactions with the leader in question. Yet political science lacks bases for ascertaining how people make inferences about the rationality, competence, or minds of foreign leaders. This paper addresses this gap using a pair of novel survey experiments. First, a choice-based conjoint survey experiment that probes the plausibility of the wide range of potential explanations suggested by existing work: a rationalist pathway based on costly behavior, a motivated reasoning pathway shaped in which perceptions are driven by the intentions of the observer, and a range of hypothesis about how perceived rationality is influenced by a leader’s identity and costless behavior.  The conjoint results suggest that while material variables are important, leaders’ ideology and personal behavior also carry significant weight in subjects’ inferences about their rationality.  A second survey experiment utilizing a multivariate factorial design creates a more controlled setting in which to test the causal impact of a leader’s race, ideology, personal behavior, and state economy on subjects’ perceptions of their rationality and competence.  The results provide strong support for the hypothesis that leaders with speaking styles that seem ‘angry’ or ‘eccentric,’ and leaders that are ideologically distant, are far more likely to be perceived as irrational than other leaders who possess equivalent material capability and make identical policy decisions.  The centrality of identity and costless behavior in inferences about foreign leaders’ rationality suggests such inferences are exogenous to other important factors in IR, and so must be taken seriously as an explanatory variable.

Thursday, May 7th: 3:30pm-5:00pm

via Zoom

To access the paper, please contact Elsy Gonzalez at elsygonzalez@uchicago.edu.

 

Persons who believe they may need assistance to attend the session should contact Elsy Gonzalez in advance to make arrangements.

The WIP Speakers Series is supported by grants from Council on Advanced Studies in the Humanities and Social Sciences and The University of Chicago Division of the Social Sciences.

Workshop on International Politics: Spring 2020 Schedule (virtual)

Dear all,
 
WIP will be hosting virtual workshops in an effort to connect with everyone currently sheltered in place and engage with the research being done by our graduate students and faculty. It will follow a slightly different format with two presentations every session for 15 minutes each and followed by 30 minutes of Q&A.

Please find attached the Spring 2020 schedule for the Workshop on International Politics (virtually). The workshop seminars will be held on Thursdays from 3:30-5:00PM via Zoom (password: 
581041).
 
The first meeting will be on Thursday, May 7th.

We look forward to a great month!