Political Studies Review

Sage Publications, Inc.
Publication date:

Latest documents

  • Technocratic Ministers in Office in European Countries (2000–2020): What’s New?
  • How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Political Normativity

    Do salient normative claims about politics require moral premises? Political moralists think they do, political realists think they do not. We defend the viability of realism in a two-pronged way. First, we show that a number of recent attacks on realism as well as realist responses to those attacks unduly conflate distinctly political normativity and non-moral political normativity. Second, we argue that Alex Worsnip and Jonathan Leader-Maynard’s recent attack on realist arguments for a distinctly political normativity depends on assuming moralism as the default view, which places an excessive burden on the viability of realism, and so begs the question. Our discussion, though, does not address the relative merits of realism and moralism, so its upshot is relatively ecumenical: moralism need not be the view that all apt normative political judgements are moral judgements, and realism need not be the view that no apt normative political judgements are moral judgements.

  • Institutional Consequences of the Black Lives Matter Movement: Towards Diversity in Elite Education

    In the wake of the 2020 Black Lives Matter protests, racial disparities in elite educational attainment have received widespread attention. Universities expressed their commitment to racial diversity, but university policies aimed at rectifying historic disadvantages were also met with criticism. Critics expressed concerns that efforts to achieve racial equity would disadvantage academically successful Asian students. With this article, we examine how Black and Asian student representation has changed over time. Time series enrolment data show a continuing increase in the representation of Black students at elite universities following Black Lives Matter protests. Medical school enrolment saw a similar trend of increased representation of Black students. Contrary to concerns that Asian student representation has declined as a result of growing enrolment rates of Black students, we observe a steady increase in the representation of Asian students alongside increases in the representation of Hispanic students over the past decade. Black Lives Matter coincided with increased Black enrolment in highly selective universities, without affecting broader trends towards greater representation of minority students.

  • Psychological Distress and Political Distrust during a Global Health Crisis: Evidence from a Cross-National Survey

    In addition to causing unprecedented mortality and wreaking havoc on national economies, the coronavirus disease pandemic has significantly undermined public mental health. How has the pandemic-induced psychological and mental distress contributed to declining political trust cross-nationally? Using a large-scale global survey comprising respondents from Africa, Americas, Asia, Middle East, and Europe, the present study addresses this question. Results from multilevel analysis show that across dozens of low- as well as high-income countries, pandemic distress experienced by individuals is negatively linked with political trust (public confidence in the government’s capacity and transparency). Moreover, this relationship is conditional on alternative “performance measures” or contextual moderators: Human Development Index, Corruption Perceptions Index, and Fragile States Index. Specifically, the magnitude of the association between pandemic distress and political distrust increases in countries that are less economically developed, perceived to be more corrupt, and politically more fragile or vulnerable.

  • Does Social Mobility Matter? The Kafala System and Anti-Immigrant Sentiment

    Existing studies argue that anti-immigrant sentiment stems from threat perception. Yet, conventional theoretical approaches cannot fully explain hostility toward immigrants in the Middle East and North Africa, where low-skilled foreign workers occupy an inferior social and legal status vis-a-vis natives under the kafala system. Building on existing studies of immigration politics, we theorize how immigration policies can either facilitate or prevent the social mobility of foreign workers. Exploring immigration attitudes in 14 Middle East and North Africa countries using an original dataset that matches survey responses with host country-specific factors, we find that extreme rights-restricting immigration policies (such as the kafala system) encourage wealthier natives to be more hostile than their lower-class counterparts. Our study suggests that anti-immigrant sentiment is context-specific and influenced by local institutions.

  • Commissioned Book Review: Daniel Stockemer and Aksel Sundström, Youth Without Representation: The Absence of Young Adults in Parliaments, Cabinets, and Candidacies
  • An Economic Understanding of Populism: A Conceptual Framework of the Demand and the Supply Side of Populism

    This article assesses progress in the economics-centred literature on populism along three key themes and develops a conceptual framework to better understand the phenomenon. On the demand side (t − 1), economics research identifies the effect of an exogenous economic shock on a marginalised segment of society and works with the economic voting hypothesis. On the supply side of populists in power (t), in the literature, populist rule is typically associated with unsustainable expansionary fiscal and monetary policies and with trade protectionism. At t + 1, by using rational and biased belief assumptions, economists provide implicit inputs for a seemingly paradoxical question: why is a populist re-elected even if most populist policies assumably end up in Pareto inferior outcomes? This article summarises and criticises the relevant economic literature and shows that not only political science, but economics scholarship is instrumental for studying populism at all three stages.

  • Behavioural Evidence, Yes; Normative Behaviourism, No

    Floyd defends normative behaviourism against ‘mentalism’. His characterization of political philosophy as mentalism is uncharitable, and it is not clear that normative behaviourism provides greater evidence of convergence that we find in liberal political philosophy. To interpret behaviour, one must theorize the effects of institutions on that behaviour, it is therefore problematic to defend institutions on behavioural grounds alone without ‘mentalistic’ theory. Normative behaviourism uses a ‘contingent imperative’; however, this leaves the behaviour normatively undefended. A potential response by Floyd to these criticisms depends upon misinterpreting Cohen’s argument that fact-free principles underlie all policy recommendations. Floyd’s own recommendations require at least one fact-free principle in Cohen’s sense. Floyd is correct that behavioural evidence is important to political philosophy.

  • Political Transnationalism: Factors Associated With Immigrants’ Voting in Their Home Country Elections

    Political transnationalism, compared with other forms of immigrant transnationalism, and its relationship with assimilation into American society, remains largely unexplored. Using immigrants’ voting in their home countries as an example, New Immigrant Survey data, including that of immigrants who became permanent residents in 2003–2004, were analyzed. The dependent variable was immigrants’ voting in their home country elections, and the independent variables included assimilation, human capital, past political behavior, and their region of origin. Based on the bivariate analysis, transnational voting rates differ by immigrants’ age, race/ethnicity, region of origin, educational level, English proficiency, assimilation, and previous voting behavior. The findings of logistic regression confirmed that assimilation is negatively associated with immigrants’ voting in the home country elections, whereas human capital is positively related to transnational voting among immigrants. Voting momentum was the most influential factor in immigrants’ voting in home country elections. Immigrants’ region of origin was another significant predictor of transnational voting. Future studies must examine immigrant political transnationalism by including national-level factors transcending individual attributes, and host countries other than the US.

  • The Substantive Representation of Future Generations in Bicameral Parliaments: A Comparison of the Belgian Chamber of Representatives and the Senate (2010–2014)

    It is generally argued that representative democracies are unresponsive to the needs of future generations. Representatives, standing for re-election, are incentivized by the needs of current generations, and fail to take the interests of the unborn into account. However, this argument bypasses the institutional diversity among parliaments. In this article, we focus in particular on bicameralism, and we ask whether the representation of future generations is more prevalent in upper than in lower houses. We expect that posterity’s interests will be taken into account more strongly in upper houses which are (1) mandated to reflect on the long-term impact of policies, (2) less politically and publicly visible and (3) at least partially composed of non-elected members. Based on an exploratory analysis of representative claims made on behalf of future generations in the Belgian Chamber of Representatives and the Senate, we conclude that the institutional status of the parliamentary assembly is not related to the propensity of making claims on behalf of posterity. We provide several explanations why this might be so.

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