Publications by Type: Conference Paper


This paper examines one type of hybrid regime, which we call competitive authoritarianism. Such regimes are authoritarian in that they do not meet standard procedural minimum criteria for democracy. Elections are often unfair and civil liberties are frequently violated. However, they are competitive in that democratic institutions are more facades. Rather, they permit opposition groups to contest seriously for–and sometimes even win–power. The combination of autocratic rule and democratic rules creates an inherent source of tension. Consequently, competitive authoritarian regimes are characterized by periodic crises in which opposition challenges force incumbents to choose between cracking down and losing power. These crises have resulted in a variety of outcomes, ranging from authoritarian entrenchment (Malaysia, Zimbabwe) to incumbent turnover without regime change (Ukraine, Zambia) to democratization (Peru, Serbia).

Paper prepared for Mapping the Great Zone: Clientelism and the Boundary between Democratic and Democratizing conference, Columbia University, April 4–5, 2003. [This is a revised version of a paper prepared for the Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association, Boston, MA, August 28-31, 2002.]

This paper is a comparison across time of the two great waves of immigration to New York City in the last hundred years: the first wave, between 1880 and 1920, brought hundreds of thousands of eastern Europeans and southern Italians to the city; the recent influx of Asians, Latin Americans, and Caribbeans began in the 1960s and is still going strong. In the first wave, the African American community was insignificant, and the total black population did not even reach a hundred thousand. By time of the second wave, the city had been on the receiving end of a massive flow of African Americans from the South that began around World War I and continued until the 1960s.

We argue that their exist three initial sending regions, India, China, and Hong–Kong (SAR) and two possible receiving regions, an entrepot destination (Canada–Europe) and the ROW (USA). The home destination is of course the original sending country.Furthermore, we argue that three options or types of movement exist for each emigrant after the initial move to the entrepot country in two separate periods. These options include staying in the new entrepot country (Canada), returning to the origin country or sojourning on to a third country (ROW). In addition, multiple permutations over these types of immigrant movements can arise and complex patterns appear which will now blur the traditional categories of temporary (less than one year) and permanent movers.

Bawn, Kathleen, and Frances Rosenbluth. 2002. “Coalition Parties versus Coalitions of Parties: How Electoral Agency Shapes the Political Logic of Costs and Benefits.” Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association. Boston. Abstract

This paper argues that governments formed from post–election coalitions (majority coalition governments in PR systems) and pre–election coalitions (majority parties in SMD systems) aggregate the interests of voters in systematically different ways. We show that the multiple policy dimensional policy space that emerges from PR motivates parties in the government coalition to logroll projects among themselves without internalizing the costs in the way that a majoritarian party would. We further show that, although centrifugal electoral incentives dominate in PR systems, some incentives towards coalescence across groups and across parties exist through the greater likelihood that large parties have in becoming a member of a minimal winning coalition of parties. The model predicts that the size of the public sector should should be larger in PR systems. This prediction is tested using data from the 1970's–90's in 17 European countries.


Is there a noticeable difference among political parties in a country in their trade policy positions? Do left parties advocate different trade policies than right parties? In the advanced industrial countries where labor tends to be scarce, are left parties more protectionist than right ones, which represent capital owners? Political institutions within these democratic countries may affect the role of partisanship. We also investigate whether increasing globalization has led to more or less partisan polarization over trade policy. We examine 25 developed countries from 1945–98 to see how their parties have competed over trade policy. Controlling for various factors, partisanship matters. In terms of position taking, right parties consistently take more free trade stances than do left ones. Globalization and other international forces have also shaped both the nature and the extent of the debate domestically over exposure to international trade.


Prepared for delivery at the 2002 Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association, August 29–September 1, 2002, Boston, Panel 11–25.

What is a "perfect dictatorship"? Such a regime provokes little societal resistance at installation. Its leaders act jointly to consolidate the regime and to broaden the support coalition by agreeing upon succession rules to rotate the presidency within the authoritarian regime. They delegate policy– making authority to civilians in areas of their competence. They emphasize consultation, not open contestation, prefer cooptation to repression, eschew ideological appeals, compel social actors into regime– licensed organizations, and deactivate civil society. South Korea under Park Chung Hee is compared on these dimensions to Argentina, Brazil, Chile, and Mexico, all at a time when authoritarian regimes governed them.

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As the cataclysmic events of September 11 have receded farther into the past, U.S. policymakers and the public should have been able to think more clearly about the causes of those events. But that has not happened.

Just after the attacks, the initial wave of nationalistic feeling was understandable (similar sentiments held the day after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941). And the Bush administration's military action against al Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan was equally understandable and justified, if not completely successful. After civilians were slaughtered so heinously on U.S. soil, the American people — recognizing the right to self–defense — would have been willing to incur a significant number of military casualties in Afghanistan to round up and kill or capture al Qaeda fighters. Yet on two separate occasions, despite its bellicose rhetoric, the Bush administration — fearing casualties, much as the Clinton administration had — allowed al Qaeda fighters to get away by timidly relying on Northern Alliance and Pakistani allies to pursue them rather than putting enough U.S. boots on the ground. What was needed then and what will be needed in the future is a robust, narrowly focused military response against terrorist groups that focus their attacks on U.S. targets. Unfortunately, a wider, less effective U.S. policy of military and covert action is being pursued by the Bush administration and supported by the American people. In fact, that indiscriminate U.S. military interventionism is a major cause of terrorism against the United States in the first place. For example, unnecessary U.S. military interventions in Georgia, the Philippines and Iraq will most likely cause more additional terrorist attacks on U.S. targets than they will prevent.


The central purpose of American power is to provide security for the United States in a dangerous world. Before September 11, other states, especially other great powers, were perceived to be the main threat to the United States. To maximize its security, American policymakers worked assiduously to ensure that the United States held a favorable position in the global balance of power.
This template for thinking about American security policy has been altered somewhat by September 11. The United States still has to be deeply concerned with great power politics, particularly with the rise of China. But now it also has to confront Al–Qaeda, which has the United States in its gunsight and is determined to acquire weapons of mass destruction.
President Bush has not yet devised a clear strategy for combating terrorism. Nevertheless, he has been under intense pressure to view September 11 as a transformative moment that calls for the United States to become much more actively involved around the world. Indeed, some conservatives argue that it is time to create an American empire, where the United States dominates the entire globe and shapes it according to its own interests. Presumably, this ambitious strategy would keep great power rivals at bay as well as eliminate the terrorist threat.


When Mohammed Atta boarded the airline on September 11, 2001 that soon thereafter slammed into the World Trade Center towers, he left behind a manual of instruction. Apparently prepared by his colleagues in the al Qaeda network, it instructed him and his fellow activists how to behave and what to do in preparation for their fateful act. What is interesting about this document is not only the text, but the subtext. Lying beneath the pious rhetoric of the manual and its eerie ties to the World Trade Center tragedy are hints about the perplexing issue of the role of religion in the contemporary world, and answers to the persistent question, how could religion be related to such vicious acts of political violence?

The common sense way of putting this question about the September 11 attack and all of the other recent acts of religious terrorism is "what's religion got to do with it?" The common sense answers to this question are varied, and they are contradictory. On the one hand some political leaders–along with many scholars of comparative religion–have assured us that religion has had nothing to do with these vicious acts, and that religion's innocent images have been used in perverse ways by evil and essentially irreligious political actors. On the other hand there are the radio talk show hosts and even a few social scientists who affirm that religion, especially Islam, has had everything to do with it–and not just ordinary religion, but a perverse strain of fundamentalism that has infected normal religion and caused it to go bad.

A reading of the Atta manuscript shows both answers to be incorrect. In an analysis of this manual undertaken by a scholar of comparative religion, Bruce Lincoln, he leaves us with no doubt that Mohammed Atta and his eighteen accomplices on that dark morning of September 11 were filled with a religious zeal and undertook their hideous assignment in a ritualistic act of self–sacrifice following traditional tenets. Moreover, although the ideology of their mentors was influenced by a certain strain of Islamic political thought characterized by the writings of Mawdudi, al Banna and Faraj, to which only a minority of Muslims subscribe, the religious practices and rituals were themselves not deviant. The actions prescribed for the nineteen on the morning of September 11 were well within the norm not only for Islamic belief and practice, but also for many other religious traditions. Skewed though their political views may have been, one could say on the basis of this text that Atta and his colleagues died as good Muslims. Had they been Christians or Hindus they would have died as good adherents of those faiths as well.


The general topic of this conference points to the link between the concepts of religion and terrorism. The September 11th attacks – and the previous and subsequent terrorist attacks in Bali and other parts of Asia – highlight the importance of gathering as much information as possible on Islam–related terrorism.

Islamic fundamentalism has added new dimensions to the phenomenon of terrorism. Here I would like to mention two. First, the widespread potential or actual support for this terrorism: Muslims make up a large proportion of the world's population and this, along with the current level of technological advance, combine to make Islamic terrorism a truly global problem. Second, Islamic fundamentalism has brought a new lethality to terrorist actions through the suicide attack.


El título general de esta conferencia liga los conceptos de religión y terrorismo. Los ataques del 11 de septiembre – y los anteriores y otros posteriores en a isla de Bali y otras partes de Asia – muestran la necesidad de contar con el mayor conocimiento posible sobre el terrorismo vinculado a la religión islámica.

El fundamentalismo islámico, en efecto, ha añadido dimensiones nuevas al fenómeno terrorista. Quiero señalar dos. En primer lugar la extensión de las bases de apoyo, potenciales o reales: los países islámicos son una proporción muy grande de la población mundial y ello unido a las posibilidades tecnológicas actuales convierte a este terrorismo en un problema ciertamente global. En segundo lugar, el fundamentalismo isl´mico ha añadido un enorme incremento de la letalidad de las acciones terroristas al incluir el suicidio como forma de llevar a cabo el ataque.


What are the consequences of the rise of mediated or indirect channels linking parties and the electorate in modern and post–modern campaigns? Critics commonly blame the mass media (and particularly the role of television) for many of the supposed ills of representative democracy, from public disenchantment with elected leaders to increasing detachment from party loyalties, lack of awareness of public affairs, and half–empty empty ballot boxes. The argument presented in this study has three core components. Firstly, long–term evidence of trends in American elections over the last fifty years demonstrates that reports of the ill health, or even death, of traditional partisan channels of campaign communication are grossly exaggerated. Secondly evidence from the 2000 Bush–Gore US presidential elections confirms that far from ?blaming the messenger?, the role of exposure to campaign information from parties, newspapers, television news, talk radio, and the Internet has been to strengthen civic engagement in America. Lastly, expanding upon previous work, the study considers the role of popular television entertainment in this process.

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Wood, Sebastian. 2001. “Transatlantic Security and the Taiwan Straits”.

We offer the first independent scholarly evaluation of the claims, forecasts, and causal inferences of the State Failure Task Force and their efforts to forecast when states will fail. State failure refers to the collapse of the authority of the central government to impose order, as in civil wars, revolutionary wars, genocides, politicides, and adverse or disruptive regime transitions. States that sponsor international terrorism or allow it to be organized from within their borders are all failed states. This task force, set up at the behest of Vice President Gore in 1994, has been led by a group of distinguished academics working as consultants to the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency. State Failure Task Force reports and publications have received attention in the media, in academia, and from public policy decision–makers. In this article, we identify several methodological errors in the task force work that cause their reported forecast probabilities of conflict to be too large, their causal inferences to be biased in unpredictable directions, and their claims of forecasting performance to be exaggerated. However, we also find that the task force has amassed the best and most carefully collected data on state failure in existence, and the required corrections which we provide, although very large in effect, are easy to implement. We also reanalyze their data with better statistical procedures and demonstrate how to improve forecasting performance to levels significantly greater than even corrected versions of their models. Although still a highly uncertain endeavor, we are as a consequence able to offer the first accurate forecasts of state failure, along with procedures and results that may be of practical use in informing foreign policy decision making. We also describe a number of strong empirical regularities that may help in ascertaining the causes of state failure. Forthcoming in World Politics. You may also be interested in the last state failure task force report, the state failure data we used to write this paper, or the related paper, Nathaniel Beck, Gary King, and Langche Zeng. "Improving Quantitative Studies of International Conflict: A Conjecture," American Political Science Review, Vol. 94, No. 1 (March, 2000): 21–36 [Abstract] (winner of the Gosnell Prize).

Chang, James. 2001. “U.S. Policy Toward Taiwan”.