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Saturday, August 13, 2016

Girlie men

The Coalitional Value Theory of Antigay Bias

Bo Winegard et al.

Evolutionary Behavioral Sciences, forthcoming

Abstract:
Research indicates that antigay bias follows a specific pattern (and probably has throughout written history, at least in the West): (a) men evince more antigay bias than women; (b) men who belong to traditionally male coalitions evince more antigay bias than those who do not; (c) antigay bias is targeted more at gay men than at lesbians; and (d) antigay bias is targeted more at effeminate gay men than at masculine gay men. We propose the coalitional value theory (CVT) of antigay bias to explain this pattern. The CVT argues that men evolved psychological systems to facilitate coalitional formation and regulation and that these systems may lead to antigay bias because men perceive gay men as possessing lower coalitional value for traditionally male coalitions. We tested the CVT in 4 studies. In Study 1, gay men were perceived as less masculine than straight men and as less competent at traditionally masculine activities. In Studies 2 and 3, masculine gay men were rated as more competent than and chosen over feminine straight men in traditionally masculine activities. In Study 4, actual coalitional contribution predicted men's perceptions of other men's derogation more than did sexual orientation. We also found that men's preferences for masculinity diminished in nontraditionally masculine tasks such as poetry, suggesting that men's assessments are contingent upon the nature of the task. This offers a possible palliative for antigay bias: coalitional pluralism, which we discuss.

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Wedding Imagery and Public Support for Gay Marriage

Paul Brewer, David Wilson & Michael Habegger

Journal of Homosexuality, August 2016, Pages 1041-1051

Abstract:
This study uses an experiment embedded in a large, nationally representative survey to test whether exposure to imagery of a gay or lesbian couple's wedding influences support for gay marriage. It also tests whether any such effects depend on the nature of the image (gay or lesbian couple, kissing or not) and viewer characteristics (sex, age, race, education, religion, and ideology). Results show that exposure to imagery of a gay couple kissing reduced support for gay marriage relative to the baseline. Other image treatments (gay couple not kissing, lesbian couple kissing, lesbian couple not kissing) did not significantly influence opinion.

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When Perspective Taking Creates a Motivational Threat: The Case of Conservatism, Same-Sex Sexual Behavior, and Anti-Gay Attitudes

Marlon Mooijman & Chadly Stern

Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, June 2016, Pages 738-754

Abstract:
Taking another person's perspective has generally been found to foster positive attitudes. We propose that perspective taking can lead to more negative attitudes when people imagine an experience that threatens their current motivations and goals. We test this idea by examining how taking the perspective of a male same-sex couple influences political conservatives' attitudes. Across four studies, we demonstrate that (a) the extent to which conservatives (but not liberals) imagine same-sex sexual behavior predicts more anti-gay attitudes, (b) this effect is in part attributable to conservatives experiencing greater disgust, and (c) having conservatives reappraise disgust as not necessarily signaling the threat of disease eliminates this effect. These findings indicate that perspective taking can foster negative attitudes when the content of perspective taking threatens current motivations. The proposed ideas provide unique insights toward developing a more comprehensive framework of how perspective taking shapes attitudes.

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How Gender Affects Heterosexual Allies' Intentions of Confronting Sexual Prejudice

Kelly LeMaire & Debra Oswald

Psychology of Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity, forthcoming

Abstract:
Sexual prejudice and discrimination are extremely prevalent throughout society, and previous research suggests that there are a multitude of negative consequences associated with being the target of this prejudice. One way of reducing prejudice is for heterosexual allies to confront the perpetrator of sexually prejudicial behaviors. The current study utilized an experimental design to examine how the gender of the perpetrator, target, and nontarget witness of heterosexist prejudice, as well as the interaction of these gender variables, affects the witness' responses to a derogatory heterosexist statement. A sample of 254 (140 women) heterosexual undergraduate college students watched 1 of 4 videos in which a perpetrator (man or woman) "approaches" them and makes heterosexist comments about a lesbian woman or gay man and then answered questions about how they would respond if they were in that situation. Additionally, they reported on their attitudes about the comments and the perpetrator. Results suggest that gender of the participant, target, and particularly the perpetrator, all play a significant role in responses to heterosexist hate speech. Implications for reduction of prejudice and future research are discussed.

By KEVIN LEWIS | 09:00:00 AM

Friday, August 12, 2016

Come on over

Backlash: The Unintended Effects of Language Prohibition in US Schools after World War I

Vasiliki Fouka

Stanford Working Paper, July 2015

Abstract:
Can forced assimilation policies successfully integrate immigrant groups? As cross-border migration surges, more countries must grapple with this question. A rich theoretical literature argues that forced integration can either succeed or create a powerful backlash, heightening the sense of cultural identity among the minority. This paper examines how a specific integration policy — namely language restrictions in elementary school — affects integration and identification with the host country later in life. I focus on the case of Germans in the United States during and after World War I. In the period 1917–1923, several US states barred foreign languages from their schools, often targeting German explicitly. Yet rather than facilitating the assimilation of immigrant children, that policy instigated a backlash. In particular, individuals who had two German parents and were affected by these language laws were less likely to volunteer in WWII; they were also more likely to marry within their ethnic group and to choose decidedly German names for their offspring. These observed effects were greater in locations where the initial sense of German identity, as proxied by Lutheran church influence, was stronger. These findings are compatible with a model of cultural transmission of identity, in which parental investment overcompensates for the direct effects of assimilation policies.

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The Causal Effect of Place: Evidence from Japanese-American Internment

Daniel Shoag & Nicholas Carollo

Harvard Working Paper, June 2016

Abstract:
Recent research has stressed the importance of long-run place effects on income and economic mobility, but the literature has struggled to isolate the causal impact of location. This paper provides new evidence on these effects using administrative data on over 100,000 Japanese-Americans who were interned during World War II. Internees were conditionally randomly assigned to camps in seven different states and held for several years. Restitution payments paid in the early 1990s to the universe of surviving internees allow us to measure their locations and outcomes nearly half a century after the camp assignments. Using this unique natural experiment we find, first, that camp assignment had a lasting effect on individuals’ long-term locations. Next, using this variation, we find large place effects on individual economic outcomes like income, education, socioeconomic status, house prices, and housing quality. People assigned to richer locations do better on all measures. Random location assignment affected intergenerational economic outcomes as well, with families assigned to more socially mobile areas (as designated by Chetty et al., 2014) displaying lower cross-generational correlation in outcomes. Finally, we provide evidence that assignment to richer places impacted people’s values and political views, a new and intriguing mechanism through which place effects operate. Together, this new causal evidence on location effects has broad implications for urban economics, as well as potential policy implications for policymakers struggling to resettle and integrate large refugee or immigrant populations.

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Cultural Assimilation during the Age of Mass Migration

Ran Abramitzky, Leah Platt Boustan & Katherine Eriksson

NBER Working Paper, July 2016

Abstract:
Using two million census records, we document cultural assimilation during the Age of Mass Migration, a formative period in US history. Immigrants chose less foreign names for children as they spent more time in the US, eventually closing half of the gap with natives. Many immigrants also intermarried and learned English. Name-based assimilation was similar by literacy status, and faster for immigrants who were more culturally distant from natives. Cultural assimilation affected the next generation. Within households, brothers with more foreign names completed fewer years of schooling, faced higher unemployment, earned less and were more likely to marry foreign-born spouses.

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The Muted Consequences of Correct Information About Immigration

Daniel Hopkins, John Sides & Jack Citrin

University of Pennsylvania Working Paper, June 2016

Abstract:
Previous research shows that people commonly exaggerate the size of minority populations. Moreover, as theories of inter-group threat would predict, the larger people perceive minority groups to be, the less favorably they feel toward these groups. Here, we investigate whether correcting Americans' misperceptions of one such population -- immigrants -- affects attitudes toward this group. We confirm that non-Hispanic Americans over-estimate the percentage of the population that is foreign-born or that is in the U.S. without authorization. However, in four separate survey experiments, we find that providing accurate information does little to affect attitudes toward immigration. This is true even when people's misperceptions are explicitly corrected. These results call into question a potential cognitive mechanism that could underpin inter-group threat theory. Misperceptions of the size of minority groups may be a consequence, rather than cause, of attitudes toward those groups.

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Inequality, Labor Market Segmentation, and Preferences for Redistribution

James Alt & Torben Iversen

American Journal of Political Science, forthcoming

Abstract:
We formalize and examine two overlapping models that show how rising inequality combined with ethnic and racial heterogeneity can explain why many advanced industrial countries have experienced a drop in support for redistribution as inequality has risen. One model, based on altruism and homophily, focuses on the effect of increasing “social distance” between the poor and the middle class, especially when minorities are increasingly overrepresented among the very poor. The other, based on self-interest, combines an “insurance” model of preferences for redistribution with increasingly segmented labor markets, in which immigration of workers without recognized skills leaves most native workers better off but intensifies competition for low-end jobs. Empirically, when we estimate parameters from the two models using data from multiple waves of ISSP surveys, we find that labor market segmentation, previously omitted in this literature, has more consistent effects than social distance.

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Immigration Enforcement and Childhood Poverty in the United States

Catalina Amuedo-Dorantes, Esther Arenas-Arroyo & Almudena Sevilla

San Diego State University Working Paper, June 2016

Abstract:
Over the past two decades immigration enforcement has grown exponentially in the United States. We exploit the geographical and temporal variation in a novel index of the intensity of immigration enforcement between 2005 and 2011 to show how the average yearly increase in interior immigration enforcement over that time period raised the likelihood of living in poverty of households with U.S. citizen children by 4 percent. The effect is robust to a number of identification tests accounting for the potential endogeneity of enforcement policies, and is primarily driven by police-based immigration enforcement measures adopted at the local level such as 287(g) agreements.

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Racial Threat and the Influence of Latino Turnout on State Immigration Policy

James Avery, Jeffrey Fine & Timothy Márquez

Social Science Quarterly, forthcoming

Method: Using state-level data from 2009 through 2012, we examine the influence of Latino constituency size and Latino electoral strength on the number of restrictive immigration laws enacted by U.S. state legislatures.

Results: We find that states with larger Latino populations pass more restrictive laws, but greater Latino electoral strength leads states to pass fewer restrictive policies. This relationship is interactive such that increases in Latino turnout act to mitigate the positive effect of Latino population size on restrictive policies. Finally, we show that the positive effect of Latino mobilization is indirect, meditated by their electoral influence on the partisan and ethnic composition of state legislatures.

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From Refuge to Riches? An Analysis of Refugees' Wage Assimilation in the United States

Animesh Giri

International Migration Review, forthcoming

Abstract:
Given that refugees may be fleeing from political, social, racial, ethnic, or religious persecution, they are not expected to be economically independent upon arrival to the United States. Considerable state and federal resources are specifically aimed at the economic assimilation of refugees in the United States. In this article, I examine the extent to which average refugee wages have assimilated toward those of their native counterparts in the United States. Among synthetic cohorts from 1990 to 2000, most recent young refugees increase average refugee wages by approximately 17 percent within a decade. Similarly, in the period between 2000 and 2010, the gains for young and recent refugees increase average refugee wages by approximately 22 percent. In contrast, across both decades, duration effects for the oldest refugee cohorts — irrespective of their length of stay in the United States — exert a considerable downward push on average refugee wages. The contrasts in wage contributions for the oldest and youngest cohorts are less extreme for non-refugee immigrants. These findings underscore the importance of age at entry into the United States for wage assimilation, especially in the case of refugees.

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Occupations, National Identity, and Immigrant Integration

Rahsaan Maxwell

Comparative Political Studies, forthcoming

Abstract:
This article examines strategies for immigrants to improve integration by exploring the relationship between occupational choice and assimilation. I ask whether immigrant-origin individuals will be viewed as better representatives of the nation when employed in occupations that reflect national identity. I examine this question with data from original surveys in France, Germany, and the United States. Results suggest that native and immigrant-origin individuals in occupations that reflect national identity are more likely to be seen as ideal representatives of the nation. Yet, the benefits of an occupation that reflects national identity are fairly minor for immigrant-origin individuals in France and Germany and roughly one third the size of the benefit for native-origin individuals. In comparison, native and immigrant-origin individuals in the United States have the same increase in likelihood of being seen as ideal representatives of the nation. These findings have implications for our understanding of immigrant integration and national identity.

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The Changing Contours of the Immigrant Rights Protest Movement in the United States: Who Demonstrates Now?

James McCann et al.

The Forum, July 2016, Pages 169–190

Abstract:
Drawing from several original longitudinal surveys of the Mexican immigrant population in Texas and Indiana, we examine the course of the immigrant rights movement in the wake of the historic mobilization in the spring of 2006. We find that from 2007 to 2015, the number of participants in demonstrations, rallies, and marches to support immigrant rights dropped substantially, though protesting remains a fairly prevalent activity. The Mexicans taking part in protest events today, however, have higher levels of education and are older compared to 8 years ago, and they are not primarily driven by personal grievances. This change in the activist base suggests that the immigrant rights movement is following a trajectory that is common among protest movements across many democratic systems. What began as an expression of profound discontent has become a somewhat more conventional mode of involvement.

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Sale of Visas: A Smuggler's Final Song?

Emmanuelle Auriol & Alice Mesnard

Economica, forthcoming

Abstract:
Is there a way of eliminating human smuggling? We set up a model to simultaneously determine the provision of human smuggling services and the demand from would-be migrants. A visa-selling policy may be successful in eliminating smugglers by eroding their profits, but it also increases immigration. In contrast, repression decreases migration but fuels cartelized smugglers. To overcome this trade-off we show that legalization through selling visas in combination with repression can be used to weaken human smuggling while controlling migration flows. Our results highlight the complementarities between repression and selling visas, and call into question current policies.

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Financing public goods and attitudes toward immigration

Iñigo Iturbe-Ormaetxe & Gabriel Romero

European Journal of Political Economy, September 2016, Pages 159–178

Abstract:
We study a model where individuals choose both the level of provision of a public good and the quota of low-skilled immigrants that are allowed into the country. Individuals can supplement the public good in the private market. Immigrants affect natives through three channels: (i) the labor market; (ii) tax collection; (iii) the quality of the public good. We find that the higher the political weight of the rich (highly skilled) is, the less tolerant the poor and the middle-class are toward immigration and the more demanding they are toward increasing public spending. The rich are the most favorable to immigration. As they have more weight, the political outcome is closer to their preferences and further from the preferences of the other groups. We use data from the European Social Survey to test the implications of our model.

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Do restrictive asylum and visa policies increase irregular migration into Europe?

Mathias Czaika & Mogens Hobolth

European Union Politics, September 2016, Pages 345-365

Abstract:
This article investigates the extent to which restrictive asylum and visa policies trigger an unintended behavioural response of potential and rejected asylum seekers. Based on our analysis of bilateral asylum and visa policies on migrant flows to 29 European states in the 2000s, we find evidence of a significant deflection into irregularity at work. Our estimates suggest that a 10% increase in asylum rejections raises the number of irregular migrants by on average 2% to 4%, and similarly, a 10% increase in short-stay visa rejections leads to a 4% to 7% increase in irregular border entries. We identify significant nuances in the impact of restrictive asylum and visa policies on the number of apprehensions ‘at the border’ versus ‘on territory’.

By KEVIN LEWIS | 09:00:00 AM

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Openings

Self-reliance: A Gender Perspective on its Relationship to Communality and Leadership Evaluations

Rebecca Schaumberg & Francis Flynn

Academy of Management Journal, forthcoming

Abstract:
We posit a female advantage in the relationship between self-reliance and leadership evaluations. We test this prediction in four studies. First, using multi-rater evaluations of young managers, we find that self-reliance relates positively to leadership evaluations for women, but not for men. Next, in each of three experiments, we manipulate the gender of a leader and the agentic trait he or she displays (e.g., self-reliance, dominance, no discrete agentic trait). We find that self-reliant female leaders are evaluated as better leaders than self-reliant male leaders. In contrast, we find a male advantage or no gender advantage for dominant leaders or leaders who are described positively, but not in terms of any discrete agentic trait. Consistent with expectancy violation theory, the female advantage in the relationship between self-reliance and leadership evaluations emerges because self-reliant female leaders are seen as similarly competent, but more communal, than self-reliant male leaders. We discuss the implications of these findings for understanding the effects of self-reliance, gender stereotypes, and stereotype violations on leadership evaluations.

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Beyond One-Size-Fits-All: Tailoring Diversity Approaches to the Representation of Social Groups

Evan Apfelbaum, Nicole Stephens & Ray Reagans

Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, forthcoming

Abstract:
When and why do organizational diversity approaches that highlight the importance of social group differences (vs. equality) help stigmatized groups succeed? We theorize that social group members’ numerical representation in an organization, compared with the majority group, influences concerns about their distinctiveness, and consequently, whether diversity approaches are effective. We combine laboratory and field methods to evaluate this theory in a professional setting, in which White women are moderately represented and Black individuals are represented in very small numbers. We expect that focusing on differences (vs. equality) will lead to greater performance and persistence among White women, yet less among Black individuals. First, we demonstrate that Black individuals report greater representation-based concerns than White women (Study 1). Next, we observe that tailoring diversity approaches to these concerns yields greater performance and persistence (Studies 2 and 3). We then manipulate social groups’ perceived representation and find that highlighting differences (vs. equality) is more effective when groups’ representation is moderate, but less effective when groups’ representation is very low (Study 4). Finally, we content-code the diversity statements of 151 major U.S. law firms and find that firms that emphasize differences have lower attrition rates among White women, whereas firms that emphasize equality have lower attrition rates among racial minorities (Study 5).

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Man Up, Man Down: Race–Ethnicity and the Hierarchy of Men in Female-Dominated Work

Jill Yavorsky, Philip Cohen & Yue Qian

Sociological Quarterly, forthcoming

Abstract:
Scholars have largely overlooked the significance of race and socioeconomic status in determining which men traverse gender boundaries into female-dominated, typically devalued, work. Examining the gender composition of the jobs that racial minority men occupy provides critical insights into mechanisms of broader racial disparities in the labor market — in addition to stalled occupational desegregation trends between men and women. Using nationally representative data from the three-year American Community Survey (2010–2012), we examine racial/ethnic and educational differences in which men occupy gender-typed jobs. We find that racial minority men are more likely than white men to occupy female-dominated jobs at all levels of education — except highly educated Asian/Pacific Islander men — and that these patterns are more pronounced at lower levels of education. These findings have implications for broader occupational inequality patterns among men as well as between men and women.

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Does 'Ban the Box' Help or Hurt Low-Skilled Workers? Statistical Discrimination and Employment Outcomes When Criminal Histories Are Hidden

Jennifer Doleac & Benjamin Hansen

NBER Working Paper, July 2016

Abstract:
Jurisdictions across the United States have adopted "ban the box" (BTB) policies preventing employers from conducting criminal background checks until late in the job application process. Their goal is to improve employment outcomes for those with criminal records, with a secondary goal of reducing racial disparities in employment. However, removing information about job applicants' criminal histories could lead employers who don't want to hire ex-offenders to try to guess who the ex-offenders are, and avoid interviewing them. In particular, employers might avoid interviewing young, low-skilled, black and Hispanic men when criminal records are not observable. This would worsen employment outcomes for these already-disadvantaged groups. In this paper, we use variation in the details and timing of state and local BTB policies to test BTB's effects on employment for various demographic groups. We find that BTB policies decrease the probability of being employed by 3.4 percentage points (5.1%) for young, low-skilled black men, and by 2.3 percentage points (2.9%) for young, low-skilled Hispanic men. These findings support the hypothesis that when an applicant's criminal history is unavailable, employers statistically discriminate against demographic groups that are likely to have a criminal record.

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The Emergence of Gender Inequality in a Crowdfunding Market: An Experimental Test of Gender System Theory

Jason Radford

University of Chicago Working Paper, June 2016

Abstract:
Research on ascriptive inequality investigates how social groups differ, whether resources are allocated unequally by group differences, and what mechanisms create and sustain this unequal allocation. In the sociology of gender, gender system theory links these three questions into a single theory but has yet to be tested comprehensively. In this study, I perform such a test using data from DonorsChoose, a crowdfunding website for public school teachers in the United States. The data is large and diverse enough to measure the gender differences theorized by gender system theory and allows us to examine whether these gender differences correspond to inequalities in funding. Critically, the data also contain a natural experiment whereby teachers’ identity was hidden until 2008. This allows for a direct test of the causes of gender inequality hypothesized by gender system theory. The results show that inequality only emerges after educators’ identity was published. And, de-anonymization caused inequality to emerge across all types of gender difference. These results provide robust support for gender system theory and contribute to research on the structure and causes of gender inequality.

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Men and the Middle: Gender Differences in Dyadic Compromise Effects

Hristina Nikolova & Cait Lamberton

Journal of Consumer Research, forthcoming

Abstract:
Individual decision makers show robust tendencies toward choosing compromise options. But what happens when consumers make choices with someone else? This article examines the choice of compromise options in joint dyadic decisions. Findings reveal that preferences for compromise alternatives replicate in mixed-gender and female-female dyads as among individuals but are attenuated when two males make a choice together. Moreover, when two males make joint choices, their tendency to choose the compromise alternative decreases not only relative to other types of pairs but also to male and female individual decision makers. Evidence is presented that this happens because male-male dyadic contexts cue gender dichotomization, behavior that is consistent with masculine but not feminine gender norms. Because the extremity in decision making is maximally consistent with masculine but not feminine gender role norms, male-male dyads exhibit lower preferences for compromise options. However, if men have an opportunity to signal masculinity to one another prior to making joint compromise choices, male-male dyads prefer compromise options at proportions no different from female-female dyads. This work brings together the judgment and decision-making literature with insights from the social psychology literature, identifying a case when gender role norms have profound influences on classic judgment and decision-making effects.

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Cognitive Performance and Labor Market Outcomes

Dajun Lin, Randall Lutter & Christopher Ruhm

NBER Working Paper, July 2016

Abstract:
We use information from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 (NLSY79) and supplementary data sources to examine how cognitive performance, measured at approximately the end of secondary schooling, is related to the labor market outcomes of 20 through 50 year olds. Our estimates control for a wide array of individual and family background characteristics, a limited set of non-cognitive attributes, survey year dummy variables and, sometimes, geographic place effects. The analysis reveals five main findings. First, cognitive performance is positively associated with future labor market outcomes at all ages. The relationship is attenuated but not eliminated by the addition of controls for non-cognitive characteristics, while the inclusion of place effects does not change the estimated associations. Second, the returns to cognitive skill increase with age. Third, the effect on total incomes reflects a combination of positive impacts of cognitive performance for both hourly wages and annual work hours. Fourth, the returns to cognitive skill are greater for women than men and for blacks and Hispanics than for non-Hispanic whites, with differential effects on work hours being more important than corresponding changes in hourly wages. Fifth, the average gains in lifetime incomes predicted to result from greater levels of cognitive performance are only slightly above those reported in prior studies but the effects are heterogeneous, with larger relative and absolute increases, in most models, for nonwhites or Hispanics than for non-Hispanic whites, and higher relative but not absolute returns for women than men.

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Undermining Gender Equality: Female Attrition from Private Law Practice

Fiona Kay, Stacey Alarie & Jones Adjei

Law & Society Review, September 2016, Pages 766–801

Abstract:
The number of women in the legal profession has grown tremendously over the last 40 years, with women now representing about half of all law school graduates. Despite the decades-long pipeline of women into the profession, women's representation among law firm partnerships remains dismally low. One key reason identified for women's minority presence among law firm partners is the high level of attrition of women associates from law firms. This high rate of female attrition undermines efforts to achieve gender equality in the legal profession. Using a survey of 1,270 law graduates, we employ piecewise constant exponential hazard regression models to explore gendered career paths from private law practice. Our analysis reveals that, for both men and women, the time leading up to partnership decisions sees many lawyers exit private practice, but women continue to leave private practice long after partnership decisions are made. Gender differences in leaving private practice also surface with reference to cohorts, areas of law, billable hours, firm sizes, and career gaps. Notably, working in criminal law augmented women's risk of leaving private practice, but not for men, while taking time away from practice for reasons other than parental leaves, hastens both men's and women's exits from private practice.

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Does Rosie Like Riveting? Male and Female Occupational Choices

Grace Lordan & Jörn-Steffen Pischke

NBER Working Paper, August 2016

Abstract:
Occupational segregation and pay gaps by gender remain large while many of the constraints traditionally believed to be responsible for these gaps have weakened over time. Here, we explore the possibility that women and men have different tastes for the content of the work they do. We run regressions of job satisfaction on the share of males in an occupation. Overall, there is a strong negative relationship between female satisfaction and the share of males. This relationship is fairly stable across different specifications and contexts, and the magnitude of the association is not attenuated by personal characteristics or other occupation averages. Notably, the effect is muted for women but largely unchanged for men when we include three measures that proxy the content and context of the work in an occupation, which we label ‘people,’ ‘brains,’ and ‘brawn.’ These results suggest that women may care more about job content, and this is a possible factor preventing them from entering some male dominated professions. We continue to find a strong negative relationship between female satisfaction and the occupation level share of males in a separate analysis that includes share of males in the firm. This suggests that we are not just picking up differences in the work environment, although these seem to play an independent and important role as well.

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The Links Between Youth Employment and Educational Attainment Across Racial Groups

NaYoung Hwang & Thurston Domina

Journal of Research on Adolescence, forthcoming

Abstract:
Research suggests that the relations between adolescent employment and youth development vary by socioeconomic status (SES) and race/ethnicity. However, it is unclear whether the links between paid work and college outcomes vary by either SES or race/ethnicity, or both. Using data from the Educational Longitudinal Study, we find that low-intensity work during high school is associated with positive college outcomes for almost all students, whereas the associations between high-intensity work and negative postsecondary outcomes are mostly limited to White students. Our results suggest that both differential selections into youth employment and differential consequences of youth employment contribute to these varying links between paid work and educational outcomes across different racial groups.

By KEVIN LEWIS | 09:00:00 AM

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Plotters

Earthquakes, Religion, and Transition to Self-Government in Italian Cities

Marianna Belloc, Francesco Drago & Roberto Galbiati

Quarterly Journal of Economics, forthcoming

Abstract:
This paper presents a unique historical experiment to explore the dynamics of institutional change in the Middle Ages. We have assembled a novel dataset, where information on political institutions for northern-central Italian cities between 1000 and 1300 is matched with detailed information on the earthquakes that occurred in the area and period of interest. Exploiting the panel structure of the data, we document that the occurrence of an earthquake retarded institutional transition from autocratic regimes to self-government (the commune) in cities where the political and the religious leaders were one and the same person (Episcopal see cities), but not in cities where political and religious powers were distinct (non-Episcopal see cities). Such differential effect holds both for destructive seismic episodes and for events that were felt by the population but did not cause any material damage to persons or objects. Ancillary results show that seismic events provoked a positive and statistically significant differential effect on the construction and further ornamentation of religious buildings between Episcopal and non-Episcopal see cities. Our findings are consistent with the idea that earthquakes, interpreted in the Middle Ages as manifestation of the will and outrage of God, represented a shock to people’s religious beliefs and, as a consequence, enhanced the ability of political-religious leaders to restore social order after a crisis relative to the emerging communal institutions. This interpretation is supported by historical evidence.

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Irrigation and Autocracy

Jeanet Sinding Bentzen, Nicolai Kaarsen & Asger Moll Wingender

Journal of the European Economic Association, forthcoming

Abstract:
Irrigated agriculture makes societies more likely to be ruled by authoritarian regimes. Ancient societies have long been thought to follow this pattern. We empirically show that irrigation affects political regimes even in the present. To avoid endogeneity, we use geographical and climatic variation to identify irrigation dependent societies. We find that countries whose agriculture depended on irrigation are about six points less democratic on the 21-point polity2 scale than countries where agriculture has been rainfed. We find qualitatively similar results across regions within countries. We argue that the effect has historical origins: irrigation allowed landed elites in arid areas to monopolize water and arable land. This made elites more powerful and better able to oppose democratization. Consistent with this conjecture, we show that irrigation dependence predicts land inequality both at the country level, and in premodern societies surveyed by ethnographers.

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Free and fair elections: A new database

Sylvia Bishop & Anke Hoeffler

Journal of Peace Research, July 2016, Pages 608-616

Abstract:
The holding of elections has become universal but only about half of all elections are free and fair. Electoral malpractice not only distorts the quality of representation but has implications for political, social and economic outcomes. Existing datasets either provide information on election quality for a large number of elections but offer little detail, or they provide very detailed information for a small number of elections. Our data collection effort closes this gap by providing ten variables of election quality for all leadership elections for the period 1975–2011. We use these data to provide an assessment of elections that is closely tied to the commonly used term ‘free and fair’. We define ‘freeness’ of the election as the rules of the election and the process leading up to the election, and ‘fairness’ of the election refers to the events on the election day. Our data show that the quality of elections has declined over time. These electoral problems are mainly due to issues in the run-up to the elections. Using probit regressions we investigate the possible causes of election malpractice. Our analysis suggests that the freeness and the fairness of the elections are related to a number of variables, such as income, aid, executive constraints and the presence of election monitors, but that these variables have differential effects on freeness and fairness.

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Regime Stability and the Persistence of Traditional Practices

Michael Poyker

University of California Working Paper, July 2016

Abstract:
I investigate the role of national institutions on the persistence of cultural norms and traditions. In particular, I examine why the harmful tradition of female genital mutilation (FGM) persists in certain African countries while in others it has been successfully eradicated. I argue that people are more willing to abandon their institutions and traditions if they are sure that the government is durable enough to set up long term replacements for them. If the regime is weak, people revert to their traditional cultural norms. I exploit the fact that ethnic groups in Africa were artificially partitioned by national borders and, using a country-ethnicity panel dataset, I show that one standard deviation in political regime durability explains at least 14% of the standard deviation of the share of circumcised women. The results are robust to an array of control variables and robustness checks. I confirm that the results are unlikely to be spurious by using within nation variation in regime durability induced by leaders' deaths from natural causes.

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Who Supports Violent Extremism in Developing Countries? Analysis of Attitudes Based on Value Surveys

Elena Ianchovichina & Youssouf Kiendrebeogo

World Bank Working Paper, June 2016

Abstract:
What are the common characteristics among radicalized individuals, willing to justify attacks targeting civilians? Drawing on information on attitudes toward extreme violence and other characteristics of 30,787 individuals from 27 developing countries around the world, and employing a variety of econometric techniques, this paper identifies the partial correlates of extremism. The results suggest that the typical extremist who supports attacks against civilians is more likely to be young, unemployed and struggling to make ends meet, relatively uneducated, and not as religious as others, but more willing to sacrifice own life for his or her beliefs. Gender and marital status are not found to explain significantly the individual-level variation in attitudes toward extremism. Although these results may vary in magnitude and significance across countries and geographic regions, they are robust to various sensitivity analyses.

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Bias and Trust in Authoritarian Media

Rory Truex

Princeton Working Paper, June 2016

Abstract:
How do citizens living under authoritarian rule perceive state-controlled news? Building on existing research on media bias in the U.S., this paper presents findings from a survey experiment that exposes Chinese citizens to different news stories, randomly assigning the putative source as well as the content itself. The core result is that respondents are aware of pro-regime biases in official mouthpieces but trust these outlets more anyway. Open-ended questions reveal two likely mechanisms. Citizens either a.) genuinely support the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and want pro-government news media or b.) are better able to "back out the biases" from the reliably slanted official papers. Existing models of media politics must be amended to account for the dominance of official papers in authoritarian settings.

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Revolutionary Leaders and Mass Killing

Nam Kyu Kim

Journal of Conflict Resolution, forthcoming

Abstract:
This article argues that revolutionary leaders are more willing to commit mass killing than nonrevolutionary leaders. Revolutionary leaders are more ideologically committed to transforming society, more risk tolerant, and more likely to view the use of violence as appropriate and effective. Furthermore, such leaders tend to command highly disciplined and loyal organizations, built in the course of revolutionary struggles, that can perpetrate mass killing. This study uses time series cross-sectional data from 1955 to 2004 to demonstrate that revolutionary leaders are more likely to initiate genocide or politicide than nonrevolutionary leaders. The violent behaviors of revolutionary leaders are not limited to the immediate postrevolutionary years but also occur later in their tenure. This demonstrates that the association of revolutionary leaders and mass killing is not simply indicative of postrevolutionary instability. This article also provides evidence for the importance of exclusionary ideologies in motivating revolutionary leaders to inflict massive violence.

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The Rebels’ Credibility Dilemma

Jakana Thomas, William Reed & Scott Wolford

International Organization, forthcoming

Abstract:
This article examines why rebel groups make large demands of governments that are inconsistent with their fighting capacity, especially when such demands are almost always rejected. We show that making large demands, even if ultimately rejected by the government, makes sense for rebels who face a credibility dilemma. Such a dilemma is most likely to arise when militarily weak rebel groups face governments of uncertain strength and can commit to fight credibly only when they believe the government is also weak. This results in a counterintuitive set of strategic incentives for weak rebels, who choose their demands to ensure that they are rejected even when the government is weak. Thus, to make their threat to fight credible, weak rebels make large demands that, when rejected, result in inefficient fighting. Since most civil wars are characterized by weak rebels bargaining with much stronger governments, it is important to understand how this particular feature of civil war shapes intrawar negotiations between the rebels and the government. We develop a model of bargaining between a government and rebel group and evaluate its implications using historical data on civil conflict in Africa from 1989 to 2010. The results suggest that the tendency for the government to be significantly stronger than rebels induces rebel groups to make unrealistically large demands.

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Crowdsourcing the Egyptian Constitution: Social Media, Elites, and the Populace

Tofigh Maboudi & Ghazal Nadi

Political Research Quarterly, forthcoming

Abstract:
Drawing on empirical evidence from online citizen feedback on the 2012 Egyptian Constitution, we demonstrate that despite normative skepticism about implications of participatory constitution making, citizen participation matters. Using data of more than 650,000 online votes and comments on the constitution, we find that draft provisions with higher public approval are less likely to change and those with lower approval are more likely to change. We also find that Articles related to rights and freedoms are more likely to change based on online public input. Finally, following the boycott of the Constituent Assembly by non-Islamists, changes in draft Articles based on public feedback drop sharply. These findings highlight the conditions under which participatory constitution making becomes more effective. First, consensus among citizens over the most salient issues increases the probability that those issues would be successfully incorporated in the constitution. Second, without ex ante elite agreement over the design of the constitution, it becomes difficult to account for citizen proposals amid political clash between elites.

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Democracy and the demographic transition

Ben Wilson & Tim Dyson

Democratization, forthcoming

Abstract:
This article addresses the role of demographic factors in contributing to the emergence of democracy. It maintains that, other things being equal, progress in the demographic transition promotes democratization. The argument is developed with reference to the effects of interrelated changes in mortality, natural increase (i.e. population growth), fertility, and population age structure. Suggestions are also made with respect to how demographic and democratic trends should be gauged. An analysis of data for the period 1970–2005 for 77 countries that were initially non-democratic provides substantial support for the argument. Some implications are discussed, as are future trends in democratization from a demographer’s perspective.

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Countering Coups: Leadership Succession Rules in Dictatorships

Erica Frantz & Elizabeth Stein

Comparative Political Studies, forthcoming

Abstract:
Paradoxically, many dictators agree to institutionalized succession rules even though these rules could regulate their removal from office. This study shows that succession rules, like other pseudo-democratic institutions in authoritarian regimes, provide survival benefits for dictators. Specifically, they protect dictators from coup attempts because they reduce elites’ incentives to try to grab power preemptively via forceful means. By assuaging the ambition of some elites who have more to gain with patience than with plotting, institutionalized succession rules hamper coordination efforts among coup plotters, which ultimately reduce a leader’s risk of confronting coups. Based on a variety of statistical models, including instrumental variables regression that addresses potential endogeneity between succession rules and coup attempts, the empirical evidence supports the authors’ hypothesis that institutions governing leadership succession reduce the likelihood that dictators confront coups. This study clarifies one of the ways in which institutions in dictatorships help autocratic leaders survive.

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Weapons of choice: The effect of natural resources on terror and insurgencies

Axel Dreher & Merle Kreibaum

Journal of Peace Research, July 2016, Pages 539-553

Abstract:
This article investigates the effect of natural resources on whether ethno-political groups choose to pursue their goals with nonviolent as compared to violent means, distinguishing terrorism from insurgencies. It is hypothesized that whether or not the extraction of fossil fuels sparks violence depends both on the group’s characteristics and the state’s reaction. Data are taken from the Minorities at Risk Organizational Behavior (MAROB) project, covering 118 organizations in 13 countries of the Middle East and North Africa over the 1980–2004 period. The multinomial logit models combine group- and country-specific information and show that ethno-political groups are more likely to resort to rebellion rather than using nonviolent means or becoming terrorists when representing regions rich in oil. This effect is enhanced for groups already enjoying regional autonomy or being supported by a foreign state but can be mitigated by power-sharing arrangements. These results are thus in line with the argument that economic considerations, or ‘greed’, dominate over political considerations, or ‘grievances’, with regard to violent conflicts. The opposite appears to hold considering terrorism, as we do not find any evidence for a resource curse here, but find an increasing effect of political discrimination and a decreasing effect of regional autonomy.

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Endogenous Presidentialism

James Robinson & Ragnar Torvik

Journal of the European Economic Association, August 2016, Pages 907–942

Abstract:
We develop a model to understand the incidence of presidential and parliamentary institutions. Our analysis is predicated on two ideas: first, that minorities are relatively powerful in a parliamentary system compared to a presidential system, and second, that presidents have more power with respect to their own coalition than prime ministers do. These assumptions imply that while presidentialism has separation of powers, it does not necessarily have more checks and balances than parliamentarism. We show that political leaders who prefer presidentialism may be supported by their own coalition if they fear losing agenda-setting power to another group. We argue that the model is consistent with a great deal of qualitative information about presidentialism in Africa and Latin America.

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Investing in stability: Economic interdependence, coups d’état, and the capitalist peace

Jonathan Powell & Mwita Chacha

Journal of Peace Research, July 2016, Pages 525-538

Abstract:
The capitalist peace thesis argues transnational economic ties have a pacifying effect on interstate relations. An extension of this literature reports that economic ties can prompt belligerents in civil conflicts to peacefully resolve their disputes and can attract third-party intervention from states with strong economic ties. This pacifying effect of economic ties, we argue, is applicable in the context of coups d’état: as a state becomes more economically interdependent with the rest of the world, the opportunity costs of domestic political disturbances are raised for both the targeted state and its financial partners. These costs – potential economic losses and a damaged economic reputation – influence belligerents in the state to use constitutional means to resolve their disputes while providing stronger incentives to foreign economic partners to influence the calculus of these belligerents as they consider the coup attempt. We test this argument quantitatively by investigating the influence of a dozen indicators of economic openness on coups in a global sample of states from 1952 to 2007. Our findings demonstrate the applicability of the capitalist peace thesis to coups d’état, manifestations of political uncertainty that are less likely to be accompanied by substantial loss of life or destruction of infrastructure.

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Foreign Direct Investment and Authoritarian Stability

Daehee Bak & Chungshik Moon

Comparative Political Studies, forthcoming

Abstract:
This article examines how foreign direct investment (FDI) affects the likelihood of authoritarian leaders’ political survival. We argue that FDI reduces the likelihood of experiencing political challenges from elites. We present two mechanisms for this claim. First, the host governments of authoritarian regimes can use FDI for long-term private good provision, so that FDI helps them to appease elite dissents and to buy off potential elite challengers. Second, FDI mitigates a commitment problem between elites and authoritarian leadership by creating an FDI-related distributional coalition, which in turn makes political defections costly to both parties. Our empirical tests using various two-stage estimators show that FDI significantly decreases the likelihood of elite-driven authoritarian leadership failure and coup attempt.

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Examining the Development of Judicial Independence

Kirk Randazzo, Douglas Gibler & Rebecca Reid

Political Research Quarterly, September 2016, Pages 583-593

Abstract:
Scholars who examine judicial independence offer various theories regarding its development. Some argue that it serves as a type of insurance for regimes who believe their majority status is in jeopardy. Other scholars argue that insurance theory does not offer an adequate explanation until states democratize. We argue that part of the explanation for these mixed results involves the inadequacy of insurance theory as a complete explanation. Our paper develops a multidimensional theory that focuses on the interplay of constraints on ruling elites derived from levels of political competition within the government, the potential for social competition within the state, and regime type. We test our argument using a dataset of approximately 145 countries over forty years, and our results support the argument that development of judicial independence is related to the political landscape encountered by the executive. Ethnic fractionalization in the state, political competition, and regime type each has a conditional effect on the observation of judicial independence.

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Peace from the past: Pre-colonial political institutions and civil wars in Africa

Tore Wig

Journal of Peace Research, July 2016, Pages 509-524

Abstract:
Research on the relationship between political institutions and civil war has paid insufficient attention to the role of traditional institutions in developing countries. This study presents large-N evidence showing that traditional ethnic institutions with origins prior to Western colonization are associated with the prevalence of civil wars in Africa after independence. Matching ethnographic data on the pre-colonial political organization of African indigenous groups to contemporary data on ethnic groups in conflict, I investigate the relationship between the traditional organization of ethnic groups and ethnic civil wars in Africa after decolonization. Specifically, I argue that excluded groups with centralized traditional institutions can rely on these institutions to more credibly bargain with the state, and that this reduces their risk of conflict. Accordingly, I find that excluded groups with centralized pre-colonial institutions are less likely to be involved in civil wars.

By KEVIN LEWIS | 09:00:00 AM

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Starting families

Reproductive rights and the career plans of U.S. college freshmen

Herdis Steingrimsdottir

Labour Economics, forthcoming

Abstract:
This paper studies the heterogeneous effects of the birth control pill and abortion rights on young people's career plans. In particular, these effects are allowed to vary by sex, race, religion, and, importantly, by level of academic ability. Using annual surveys of over two million college freshmen from 1968 to 1976, I find that the pill mainly affected high ability women, by shifting their plans toward occupations with higher wages and higher male ratios. Abortion rights, in contrast, were mainly shown to affect women in the low ability group, with their plans shifting toward careers associated with lower income and lower prestige scores. My findings also suggest that the career plans of black males were positively affected by both increased access to the pill and abortions.

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Does Family Planning Increase Children’s Opportunities? Evidence from the War on Poverty and the Early Years of Title X

Martha Bailey, Olga Malkova & Zoe McLaren

University of Michigan Working Paper, June 2016

Abstract:
This paper examines the relationship between parents’ access to family planning and the economic resources of the average child. Using the county-level introduction of U.S. family planning programs between 1964 and 1973, we find that children born after programs began had 2.5% higher household incomes. They were also 7% less likely to live in poverty and 11% less likely to live in households receiving public assistance. Even with extreme assumptions about selection, these estimates are large enough to imply that family planning programs directly increased children’s resources, including increases in mothers’ paid work and increased childbearing within marriage.

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Benefits from delay? The effect of abortion availability on young women and their children

Eirin Mølland

Labour Economics, forthcoming

Abstract:
While much is now known about the effects of the arrival of the contraceptive pill on the fertility choices and other outcomes of women, there has been less study of the effects of abortion availability. Abortion was made widely available within week 12 of gestation to teenage women in Oslo several years before the rest of Norway. I use a differences-in-differences approach to examine the effects on teen childbearing, fertility at older ages, educational attainment, and labor market outcomes of the affected women. I also study several outcomes for the first-born children of these women. I find that abortion availability delayed fertility but did not reduce completed family size. It also resulted in higher educational attainment. Children of mothers who had access to abortion are also found to have better outcomes.

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Long-Term Effect of Exposure to a Friend's Adolescent Childbirth on Fertility, Education, and Earnings

Kandice Kapinos & Olga Yakusheva

Journal of Adolescent Health, forthcoming

Methods: Estimating causal peer effects in fertility is challenging because the exposure variable (peer pregnancy and childbirth) is nonrandomly assigned. Miscarriages in early pregnancy occur spontaneously in a significant proportion of pregnancies and, therefore, create a natural experiment within which the causal effect of childbirth can be examined. This exploratory study compared adjusted fertility, educational, and labor market outcomes of female adolescents whose adolescent pregnant friend gave birth to female adolescents whose pregnant friend miscarried. Longitudinal data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health were analyzed using logistic, ordinal logistic, linear, and log-linear regressions.

Results: Females whose adolescent pregnant friends gave birth (instead of miscarried) had decreased adolescent sexual activity, pregnancy, and teen childbearing and increased educational attainment, but there were no significant long-term effects on total fertility or differences in labor market outcomes, relative to females whose pregnant adolescent friend miscarried.

Conclusions: Adolescent females appear to learn vicariously from teen childbearing experiences of their friends, resulting in delayed childbearing and higher educational attainment. Interventions that expose adolescents to the reality of teen motherhood may be an effective way of reducing the rates of teen childbearing and improving schooling.

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Early Menarche is Associated With Preference for Masculine Male Faces and Younger Preferred Age to Have a First Child

Carlota Batres & David Perrett

Evolutionary Psychology, April 2016

Abstract:
One developmental factor that is associated with variation in reproductive strategy is pubertal timing. For instance, women who experience earlier menarche have their first pregnancy earlier and prefer more masculinized male voices. Early menarche may also lead to preferences for masculine faces, but no study has shown such a link. We therefore investigated the relationships between pubertal timing, reproductive plans, sexual attitudes and behaviors, and masculinity preferences in nulliparous women aged 18–30 from the United Kingdom (N = 10,793). We found that women who experienced earlier menarche reported a younger preferred age to have a first child and showed stronger masculinity preferences. This provides evidence that women experiencing early menarche not only have children earlier but notably plan to have children earlier. Additionally, our findings provide evidence that age of menarche influences partner selection, which is instrumental for the implementation of reproductive strategies.

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Is Education Always Reducing Fertility? Evidence from Compulsory Schooling Reforms

Margherita Fort, Nicole Schneeweis & Rudolf Winter-Ebmer

Economic Journal, forthcoming

Abstract:
We study the relationship between education and fertility, exploiting compulsory schooling reforms in England and Continental Europe, implemented between 1936 and 1975. We assess the causal effect of education on the number of biological children and the incidence of childlessness. While we find a negative relationship between education and fertility in England, this result cannot be confirmed for Continental Europe. The additional education generated by schooling expansions on the Continent did not lead to a decrease in the number of biological children nor to an increase in childlessness. These findings are robust to a number of sensitivity and falsification checks.

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Improved Contraceptive Use Among Teen Mothers in a Patient-Centered Medical Home

Amy Lewin et al.

Journal of Adolescent Health, August 2016, Pages 171–176

Purpose: The Generations program, a patient-centered medical home, providing primary medical care, social work, and mental health services to teen mothers and their children, offers a promising approach to pregnancy prevention for teen mothers. This study tested whether the Generations intervention was associated with improved rates of contraceptive and condom use among participants 12 months after program entry.

Methods: This study compared teen mothers enrolled in Generations to those receiving standard community-based pediatric primary care over 12 months. Participants included African-American mothers ages 19 and younger, with infants under 6 months, living in Washington DC. A total of 83% of the baseline sample (150 mother-child dyads) was retained at follow-up.

Results: Generations participants had over three times the odds of contraceptive use, with an odds ratio (OR) of 3.35, and twice the odds of condom use (OR = 2.29) after 12 months, compared to participants receiving standard pediatric care. The odds remained comparable and significant when adjusting for differences in baseline use. Once additional covariates were entered into the model, the association was reduced to OR = 2.59 because being in a relationship with the baby's father was significantly associated with reduced contraceptive use. The same pattern was evident for condom use. Mothers in Generations had steady use of contraceptives over time, but there was a decline in use among comparison mothers, indicating that Generations prevented contraceptive discontinuation.

Conclusions: Findings from this study suggest that the Generations program is an effective intervention for improving contraceptive use among teen mothers, a group at especially high risk for pregnancy.

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The Emergence of Two Distinct Fertility Regimes in Economically Advanced Countries

Ronald Rindfuss, Minja Kim Choe & Sarah Brauner-Otto

Population Research and Policy Review, June 2016, Pages 287-304

Abstract:
Beginning in 2000, in economically advanced countries, a remarkable bifurcation in fertility levels has emerged, with one group in the moderate range of period total fertility rates, about 1.9, and the other at 1.3. The upper branch consists of countries in Northern and Western Europe, Oceania and the United States; the lower branch includes Central, Southern, and Eastern Europe, and East and Southeast Asia. A review of the major theories for low-fertility countries reveals that none of them would have predicted this specific bifurcation. We argue that those countries with fertility levels close to replacement level have institutional arrangements, and related policies, that make it easier, not easy, for women to combine the worker and mother roles. The institutional details are quite different across countries, suggesting that multiple combinations of institutional arrangements and policies can lead to the same country-level fertility outcome. Canada, the only exception to this bifurcation, illustrates the importance of the different institutional structures in Québec compared to the rest of Canada.

By KEVIN LEWIS | 09:00:00 AM

Monday, August 8, 2016

Trade deals

International Trade and Job Polarization: Evidence at the Worker-Level

Wolfgang Keller & Hâle Utar

NBER Working Paper, June 2016

Abstract:
This paper examines the role of international trade for job polarization, the phenomenon in which employment for high- and low-wage occupations increases but mid-wage occupations decline. With employer-employee matched data on virtually all workers and firms in Denmark between 1999 and 2009, we use instrumental-variables techniques and a quasi-natural experiment to show that import competition is a major cause of job polarization. Import competition with China accounts for about 17% of the aggregate decline in mid-wage employment. Many mid-skill workers are pushed into low-wage service jobs while others move into high-wage jobs. The direction of movement, up or down, turns on the skill focus of workers’ education. Workers with vocational training for a service occupation can avoid moving into low-wage service jobs, and among them workers with information-technology education are far more likely to move into high-wage jobs than other workers.

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Who wrote the rules for the Trans-Pacific Partnership?

Todd Allee & Andrew Lugg

Research & Politics, July 2016

Abstract:
Twelve governments recently signed the much-anticipated Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), sparking heated debate about its merits. As a primary motivation for this first “mega-regional” agreement, US President Barack Obama argues that the TPP is a way for the USA, and not China or someone else, to write the global trade rules of the future. This begs some important questions, namely which country or countries really did write most of the TPP and thus whose agenda for 21st century trade might it advance? To answer these questions, we compare the recently-released text of the TPP to the language in the 74 previous trade agreements that TPP members signed since 1995. Our text-as-data analyses reveal that the contents of the TPP are taken disproportionately from earlier US trade agreements. The ten preferential trade agreements (PTAs) that most closely match the TPP are all US PTAs. Moreover, the contents of controversial chapters, such as the one on investment, are drawn even more heavily from past US treaty language. Our study and findings apply power-based accounts of international institutions to a landmark new agreement, and portray a more active, template-based process of international diffusion.

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Currency Wars, Coordination, and Capital Controls

Olivier Blanchard

NBER Working Paper, July 2016

Abstract:
The strong monetary policy actions undertaken by advanced economies' central banks have led to complaints of “currency wars” by some emerging market economies, and to widespread demands for more macroeconomic policy coordination. This paper revisits these issues. It concludes that, while advanced economies' monetary policies indeed have had substantial spillover effects on emerging market economies, there was and still is little room for coordination. It then argues that restrictions on capital flows were and are a more natural instrument for advancing the objectives of both macro and financial stability.

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International Technology Spillovers and Growth over the Past 142 Years: The Role of Genetic Proximity

Jakob Madsen & Minoo Farhadi

Economica, forthcoming

Abstract:
This paper suggests genetic proximity, in addition to geographic proximity and imports, as a factor facilitating international knowledge transmission, where knowledge is measured as the stock of knowledge as well as research intensity to allow for the possibility that international knowledge spillovers have permanent productivity growth effects. Using data for 31 countries with diverse development paths over the period 1870–2011, the results show that genetic proximity and imports are important in facilitating knowledge transmission, and that knowledge spillovers have permanent growth effects.

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A Global View of Productivity Growth in China

Chang-Tai Hsieh & Ralph Ossa

Journal of International Economics, forthcoming

Abstract:
How does a country’s productivity growth affect worldwide real incomes through international trade? In this paper, we take this classic question to the data by measuring the spillover effects of China’s productivity growth. Using a quantitative trade model, we first estimate China’s productivity growth between 1995-2007 and then isolate what would have happened to real incomes around the world if only China’s productivity had changed. We find that the spillover effects are small for all countries in our sample, ranging from a cumulative real income loss of at most -0.2 percent to a cumulative real income gain of at most 0.2 percent.

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Dark matter, black holes and old-fashioned exploitation: Transnational corporations and the US economy

Mona Ali

Cambridge Journal of Economics, July 2016, Pages 997-1018

Abstract:
In advanced economies, foreign direct investment (FDI) is usually a two-way process, involving both inwards and outwards investment, often in the same industries. Why, then, is US FDI so profitable whilst FDI in the USA is conspicuous in its unprofitability? Using sectoral-based data from 1999 to 2005 to investigate this puzzle, I find that US-owned FDI (USDIA) demonstrates far higher returns particularly relative to foreign-owned direct investment in the USA (FDIUS) but also compared to all US-based industries (NIPA). FDIUS is the worst performing of all three portfolios, exhibiting the poorest and most volatile returns for the period examined. These results hold for both the aggregate non-financial data as well as for the ‘narrow measured value added’. For the period tested, US inwards FDI isn’t employment generating whereas US direct investment abroad produces the fastest gains in labour productivity, output, employment, investment expenditures and tax revenues. Whilst it is debatable that ‘dark matter’ or intangible proprietary assets drive superior relative returns to USDIA, labour exploitation appears to play a role. Increases in labour productivity coupled with declining wage shares for all three portfolios (especially pronounced for USDIA) suggest ‘race to bottom’ outcomes. A burgeoning aspect of this race is cross-border profit-shifting to minimise firms’ global tax burdens. I suspect but am unable to confirm that profits are being shifted overseas — vanishing into the ‘black holes’ of tax havens, transfer pricing and other modes of tax avoidance.

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Partisan Cycles in Offshore Outsourcing: Evidence from U.S. Imports

Pablo Pinto & Stephen Weymouth

Economics & Politics, forthcoming

Abstract:
The wage and employment effects of offshoring roil politics in the United States and around the world. Firms that offshore either outsource their activities to unaffiliated businesses, or internalize production by establishing subsidiaries from which they import intrafirm. We argue that the political environment in trade partner countries influences U.S. offshoring patterns in ways that have been ignored in the extant literature. Drawing on the political business cycle literature, we expect higher production costs and lower profits for firms in capital (labor) intensive sectors when the Left (Right) is in power. These partisan cycles, in turn, shape the sectoral composition of exports from the partner to the United States, and the degree to which trade is conducted intrafirm. Under a Left- (Right-) leaning government in a partner country, U.S. intrafirm imports of capital- (labor-) goods increase relative to total imports in these industries. Examining highly disaggregated U.S. import data, we find strong support for our argument. Our results indicate that the effect of partisan governments on offshore outsourcing depends on factor intensities of production, which vary across industries. The degree of internalization in global sourcing is shaped in part by the distributional objectives of partisan governments, and not by economic factors alone.

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The Effects of Import Competition on Worker Health

Clay McManus & Georg Schaur

Journal of International Economics, forthcoming

Abstract:
Occupational health is an important determinant of workers' welfare. Existing mechanisms and evidence from the international trade and occupational safety literatures combine to predict that import competition impacts work place injuries, especially at small firms that are most affected by foreign imports. We examine this prediction with novel data on injuries at US manufacturers using Chinese import growth in 1996–2007 as a shock to competition. The data show that injury rates in the competing US industries increase over the short to medium run, particularly at smaller establishments. Back of the envelope calculations show that injury risk increases by 13% at the smallest establishments, the equivalent of a 1 to 2% reduction in workers' wages.

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Does Partisan Conflict Deter FDI Inflows to the US?

Marina Azzimonti

NBER Working Paper, June 2016

Abstract:
I analyze the effects of political uncertainty on foreign direct investment flows to the US using a novel indicator, the partisan conflict index (PCI). Partisan conflict is relevant for the evolution of cross-border capital flows because the expected returns on investment projects are less predictable when the timing, size, and composition of fiscal policy is uncertain. The partisan conflict index tracks the evolution of political disagreement among policymakers as reported by the media. Using aggregate quarterly data from 1985 to 2015, I show that an innovation of the PCI is associated with a significant decline in FDI flows to the US. The magnitude of the effect is similar when disaggregated data from a panel of parent countries is considered instead.

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Predictability Versus Flexibility: Secrecy in International Investment Arbitration

Emilie Hafner-Burton, Zachary Steinert-Threlkeld & David Victor

World Politics, July 2016, Pages 413-453

Abstract:
There is heated debate over the wisdom and effect of secrecy in international negotiations. This debate has become central to the process of foreign investment arbitration because parties to disputes nearly always can choose to hide arbitral outcomes from public view. Working with a new database of disputes at the world's largest investor-state arbitral institution, the World Bank's International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes, the authors examine the incentives of firms and governments to keep the details of their disputes secret. The authors argue that secrecy in the context of investment arbitration works like a flexibility-enhancing device, similar to the way escape clauses function in the context of international trade. To attract and preserve investment, governments make contractual and treaty-based promises to submit to binding arbitration in the event of a dispute. They may prefer secrecy in cases when they are under strong political pressure to adopt policies that violate international legal norms designed to protect investor interests. Investors favor secrecy when managing politically sensitive disputes over assets they will continue to own and manage in host countries long after the particular dispute has passed. Although governments prefer secrecy to help facilitate politically difficult bargaining, secrecy diminishes one of the central purposes of arbitration: to allow governments to signal publicly their general commitment to investor-friendly policies. Understanding the incentives for keeping the details of dispute resolution secret may help future scholars explain more accurately the observed patterns of wins and losses from investor-state arbitration as well as patterns of investment.

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Economic Crises and Trade Policy Competition

Cameron Ballard-Rosa, Allison Carnegie & Nikhar Gaikwad

British Journal of Political Science, forthcoming

Abstract:
How do crises affect trade policy? This article reconciles starkly diverging accounts in the literature by showing that economic adversity generates endogenous incentives not only for protection, but also for liberalization. It first formally develops the mechanisms by which two features of shocks – intensity and duration – influence the resources and political strategies of distressed firms. The central insight is that policy adjustments to resuscitate afflicted industries typically generate ‘knock-on’ effects on the profitability and political maneuverings of other firms in the economy. The study incorporates these countervailing pressures in its analysis of trade policy competition. In the wake of crises, protection initially increases when affected firms lobby for assistance, but then decreases as industries run low on resources to expend on lobbying and as firms in other industries mobilize to counter-lobby. The theoretical predictions are tested using sub-national and cross-national data, and real-world illustrations are presented to highlight the mechanisms driving the results.

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Centers of Gravity: Regional Powers, Democracy, and Trade

Timothy Peterson & Thomas Lassi

International Interactions, forthcoming

Abstract:
Classic studies on hegemonic stability and power transition suggest that concentration of capabilities favoring a single state can promote economic cooperation and discourage militarized conflict. However, tests of these arguments have been primarily limited to examining temporal variation in global capability distributions and corresponding levels of system-wide cooperation; few have examined the impact of capability concentration at the region level. In this article, we contend that concentration of regional military capabilities corresponds to lower trade costs for states throughout a region and to an incentive for weaker states to de-prioritize expenditure on the military, freeing resources that can be used to promote trade. As a result, this condition promotes higher levels of trade, particularly within the region. We also argue that democratic regional powers are better able to foster confidence in the sustainability of cooperation; thus, the trade-enhancing impact of concentrated regional capabilities is stronger when the predominant state is more democratic. We find evidence in support of our expectations in statistical models examining state trade between 1960 and 2007.

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Human Rights, NGO Shaming and the Exports of Abusive States

Timothy Peterson, Amanda Murdie & Victor Asal

British Journal of Political Science, forthcoming

Abstract:
Does the attention of human rights organizations limit exports from rights-abusing states? This article examines how naming and shaming by human rights organizations (HROs) conditions the influence of human rights abuse on exports, and argues that human rights abuse alone is insufficient to damage a state’s exports. However, as attention to abuse via HRO shaming increases, abuse has an increasingly negative impact on exports. Importantly, this relationship is also conditional on the respect for human rights among importing states; human rights abuse, even if it is shamed, has no effect when importers are similarly abusive. Empirical tests utilizing gravity models of trade incorporating data on physical integrity rights abuse and HRO shaming in 1990–2008 yield strong support for our expectations.

By KEVIN LEWIS | 09:00:00 AM

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Generous

Social Class and Prosocial Behavior: The Moderating Role of Public Versus Private Contexts

Michael Kraus & Bennett Callaghan

Social Psychological and Personality Science, forthcoming

Abstract:
Associations between social class and prosocial behavior - defined broadly as action intended to help others - may vary as a function of contextual factors. Three studies examined how making prosocial actions public, versus private, moderates this association. In Study 1, participation in a public prosocial campaign was higher among upper than lower class individuals. In Studies 2 and 3, lower class individuals were more prosocial in a dictator game scenario in private than in public, whereas upper class individuals showed the reverse pattern. Follow-up analyses revealed the importance of reputational concerns for shaping class differences in prosociality: Specifically, higher class individuals reported that pride motivated their prosocial behavior more than lower class individuals, and this association partially accounted for class-based differences in prosociality in public versus private contexts. Together, these results suggest that unique strategies for connecting and relating to others develop based on one's position in the class hierarchy.

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Communicating to Influence Perceptions of Social Stigma: Implications for the Use of Signs by the Homeless as a Means of Soliciting Funds

Franklin Boster et al.

American Behavioral Scientist, forthcoming

Abstract:
Homelessness is an important social problem in many countries, including the United States. The plight of the homeless is compounded by a high level of stigma associated with the homeless. This study examines the effects of humorous and nonhumorous signs used by the homeless to attract donations. Study 1 shows that nonhumorous signs attracted 10 times as much money as humorous signs. Study 2 shows that subjects felt more comfortable in the presence of homeless not holding a sign and perceived them more positively compared with homeless holding a humorous sign. Positive perceptions of them led to more comfort, which led to more donations. Study 3 shows that subjects perceived homeless not holding a sign more positively compared with homeless holding a nonhumorous sign. These findings suggest that signs make potential donors feel uncomfortable, potentially resulting in diminished donations.

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To Give or Not to Give? Interactive Effects of Status and Legitimacy on Generosity

Nicholas Hays & Steven Blader

Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, forthcoming

Abstract:
Although previous research has demonstrated that generosity can lead to status gains, the converse effect of status on generosity has received less attention. This is a significant gap because groups and society at large rely on the beneficence of all members, especially those holding high-status positions. More broadly, research on the psychology of status remains largely unexplored, which is striking in light of the attention given to other forms of social hierarchy, such as power. The current work focuses on the psychology of status and explores the interactive effects of status and legitimacy on generosity. In particular, we hypothesize that status will decrease generosity when the status hierarchy is perceived as legitimate because status can inflate views of one's value to the group and sense of deservingness. In contrast, we hypothesize that status increases generosity when the status hierarchy is perceived as illegitimate, due to efforts to restore equity through one's generosity. Our results support these hypotheses across 6 studies (a field study and 5 experiments) and empirically demonstrate that the effects of status and legitimacy on generosity can be attributed to concerns about equity in status allocation.

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Helping from the heart: Voluntary upregulation of heart rate variability predicts altruistic behavior

Boris Bornemann et al.

Biological Psychology, September 2016, Pages 54-63

Abstract:
Our various daily activities continually require regulation of our internal state. These regulatory processes covary with changes in High Frequency Heart Rate Variability (HF-HRV), a marker of parasympathetic activity. Specifically, incidental increases in HF-HRV accompany positive social engagement behavior and prosocial action. Little is known about deliberate regulation of HF-HRV and the role of voluntary parasympathetic regulation in prosocial behavior. Here, we present a novel biofeedback task that measures the ability to deliberately increase HF-HRV. In two large samples, we find that a) participants are able to voluntarily upregulate HF-HRV, and b) variation in this ability predicts individual differences in altruistic prosocial behavior, but not non-altruistic forms of prosociality, assessed through 14 different measures. Our findings suggest that self-induction of parasympathetic states is involved in altruistic action. The biofeedback task may provide a measure of deliberate parasympathetic regulation, with implications for the study of attention, emotion, and social behavior.

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Fundraising Intermediaries Inhibit Quality-Driven Charitable Donations

Lucas Coffman

Economic Inquiry, forthcoming

Abstract:
Charitable donations are frequently raised by an intermediary, which accepts donations and subsequently sends the proceeds to the charity - for example, a workplace campaign for United Way, a 5-km walk for Susan G. Komen, or buying cookies from a local troop for the Girl Scouts. These fundraisers can greatly increase donations received by a given charity, but how do they affect what types of charities we support? This article shows intermediary fundraisers can make donors insensitive to differences in charity quality: Unattractive charities can receive the same financial support as an attractive charity. In a series of across-subject experiments, when donations are framed as going directly to the charity, unattractive charities receive fewer and smaller contributions relative to attractive charities; however, when donations for the same charities are collected by (meaningless) intermediary fundraising campaigns, donations become indistinguishable across charities. The fundraising campaign does not affect donor recall of charity identity or evaluation of charity quality; it simply precludes donors from using these data in the donation decision. Follow-up experiments suggest the results are driven by information overload.

By KEVIN LEWIS | 09:00:00 AM

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Pairing

Sexual Inactivity During Young Adulthood Is More Common Among U.S. Millennials and iGen: Age, Period, and Cohort Effects on Having No Sexual Partners After Age 18

Jean Twenge, Ryne Sherman & Brooke Wells

Archives of Sexual Behavior, forthcoming

Abstract:
Examining age, time period, and cohort/generational changes in sexual experience is key to better understanding sociocultural influences on sexuality and relationships. Americans born in the 1980s and 1990s (commonly known as Millennials and iGen) were more likely to report having no sexual partners as adults compared to GenX’ers born in the 1960s and 1970s in the General Social Survey, a nationally representative sample of American adults (N = 26,707). Among those aged 20–24, more than twice as many Millennials born in the 1990s (15 %) had no sexual partners since age 18 compared to GenX’ers born in the 1960s (6 %). Higher rates of sexual inactivity among Millennials and iGen also appeared in analyses using a generalized hierarchical linear modeling technique known as age–period–cohort analysis to control for age and time period effects among adults of all ages. Americans born early in the 20th century also showed elevated rates of adult sexual inactivity. The shift toward higher rates of sexual inactivity among Millennials and iGen’ers was more pronounced among women and absent among Black Americans and those with a college education. Contrary to popular media conceptions of a “hookup generation” more likely to engage in frequent casual sex, a higher percentage of Americans in recent cohorts, particularly Millennials and iGen’ers born in the 1990s, had no sexual partners after age 18.

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Altruism predicts mating success in humans

Steven Arnocky et al.

British Journal of Psychology, forthcoming

Abstract:
In order for non-kin altruism to evolve, altruists must receive fitness benefits for their actions that outweigh the costs. Several researchers have suggested that altruism is a costly signal of desirable qualities, such that it could have evolved by sexual selection. In two studies, we show that altruism is broadly linked with mating success. In Study 1, participants who scored higher on a self-report altruism measure reported they were more desirable to the opposite sex, as well as reported having more sex partners, more casual sex partners, and having sex more often within relationships. Sex moderated some of these relationships, such that altruism mattered more for men's number of lifetime and casual sex partners. In Study 2, participants who were willing to donate potential monetary winnings (in a modified dictator dilemma) reported having more lifetime sex partners, more casual sex partners, and more sex partners over the past year. Men who were willing to donate also reported having more lifetime dating partners. Furthermore, these patterns persisted, even when controlling for narcissism, Big Five personality traits, and socially desirable responding. These results suggest that altruists have higher mating success than non-altruists and support the hypothesis that altruism is a sexually selected costly signal of difficult-to-observe qualities.

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Does the internet affect assortative mating? Evidence from the U.S. and Germany

Gina Potarca

Social Science Research, forthcoming

Abstract:
The Internet has now become a habitual channel for finding a partner, but little is known about the impact of this recent partnership market on mate selection patterns. This study revisits the supply side perspective on assortative mating by exploring the role played by online venues in breeding educational, racial/ethnic and religious endogamy. It compares couples that met online (through either online dating platforms, Internet social networking, Internet gaming website, Internet chat, Internet community, etc.) to those that met through various offline contexts of interaction. Using unique data from the U.S. for the year 2009 and data from Germany collected between 2008 and 2014, I run log-multiplicative models that allow for the strength of partners’ association to vary along meeting settings. Results reveal that the Internet promotes weaker couple endogamy compared to conventional contexts typically known to foster endogamy, such as school, family, friends, or religious venues.

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What Makes Jessica Rabbit Sexy? Contrasting Roles of Waist and Hip Size

William Lassek & Steven Gaulin

Evolutionary Psychology, April 2016

Abstract:
While waist/hip ratio (WHR) and body mass index (BMI) have been the most studied putative determinants of female bodily attractiveness, BMI is not directly observable, and few studies have considered the independent roles of waist and hip size. The range of attractiveness in many studies is also quite limited, with none of the stimuli rated as highly attractive. To explore the relationships of these anthropometric parameters with attractiveness across a much broader spectrum of attractiveness, we employ three quite different samples: a large sample of college women, a larger sample of Playboy Playmates of the Month than that has been previously examined, and a large pool of imaginary women (e.g., cartoon, video game, graphic novel characters) chosen as the “most attractive” by university students. Within-sample and between-sample comparisons agree in indicating that waist size is the key determinant of female bodily attractiveness and accounts for the relationship of both BMI and WHR with attractiveness, with between-sample effect sizes of 2.4–3.2. In contrast, hip size is much more similar across attractiveness groups and is unrelated to attractiveness when BMI or waist size is controlled.

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Not Just Black and White: How Race/Ethnicity and Gender Intersect in Hookup Culture

Sarah Spell

Sociology of Race and Ethnicity, forthcoming

Abstract:
The increasing interest in research on hookups (i.e., noncommittal unions focused on sexual acts ranging from kissing to intercourse) often highlights individual-level predictors (e.g., alcohol use, attitudes) or gender/class differences. Racial/ethnic comparisons are often portrayed as White/non-White, despite literature on differing experiences within race by gender due to institutional-level differences, standards of beauty, and sexual stereotypes. Using the Online College Social Life Survey data set (n = 18,347), this article explores participation in hookup culture by race/ethnicity and gender. Additionally, interviews with undergraduates at the University of Pennsylvania (n = 60) reveal students’ expectations of, and barriers to, participation in hookup culture. Asian men report on average almost half the hookup partners than do other men, while White women report almost double the hookup partners on average than do other women. This article concludes that arguing a White/non-White dichotomy ignores important gender differences: Asian men and non-White women face additional barriers to participation in hookup culture. Finally, this article asserts that research must incorporate intersectionality to study hookups.

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Is women's sociosexual orientation related to their physical attractiveness?

Claire Fisher et al.

Personality and Individual Differences, October 2016, Pages 396–399

Abstract:
Although many researchers have suggested that more physically attractive women report less restricted sociosexual orientations (i.e., report being more willing to engage in short-term, uncommitted sexual relationships), evidence for this association is equivocal. Consequently, we tested for possible relationships between women's scores on the revised version of the Sociosexual Orientation Inventory (SOI-R) and women's body mass index (N = 212), waist-hip ratio (N = 213), ratings of their facial attractiveness (N = 226), and a composite attractiveness measure derived from these three intercorrelated measures. Our analyses suggest that more attractive women report less restricted sociosexual orientations. Moreover, we show that this link between attractiveness and sociosexual orientation is not simply a consequence of women's scores on the behavior subscale of the SOI-R. Importantly, however, the correlations between measures of women's physical attractiveness and their reported sociosexual orientation were very weak, suggesting that perceptions of these potential cues of women's sociosexual orientation are unlikely to provide accurate, socially relevant information about others during social interactions.

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Effect of Copulins on Rating of Female Attractiveness, Mate-Guarding, and Self-Perceived Sexual Desirability

Megan Williams & Amy Jacobson

Evolutionary Psychology, April 2016

Abstract:
Olfaction and chemical signaling play an important role in the mating behaviors of many taxa, yet there is minimal empirical research on human putative pheromones. A mixture of five volatile fatty acids secreted vaginally, identified and named “copulins,” significantly increase in concentration during the follicular phase and decrease in concentration during the luteal phase in nonpill using women. Men exposed to copulins exhibit an increase in testosterone, are inhibited in discriminating the attractiveness of women’s faces, and behave less cooperatively. According to Anisogamy, Sexual Selection and Parental Investment Theory, mammalian males, having low cost and high benefit from any copulatory interaction, may adaptively utilize any useful cues to identifying ovulating females and adjust their behavior accordingly in order to maximize their potential reproductive success. In the current study, we attempted a replication of Jütte and Grammer’s finding indicating copulins inhibit the ability of men to discriminate attractiveness of women’s faces, and we examined the role of copulins in self-reported mate-guarding behaviors and self-perceived sexual desirability. We utilized a randomized placebo-controlled design and as predicted, results indicated men exposed to copulins were more likely to rate themselves as sexually desirable to women and, on average, the copulin group rated women’s faces as more attractive than controls. There were no significant findings with mate guarding.

By KEVIN LEWIS | 09:00:00 AM

Friday, August 5, 2016

Horse racing

Negative Advertising and the Dynamics of Candidate Support

Kevin Banda & Jason Windett

Political Behavior, September 2016, Pages 747-766

Abstract:
Scholars have spent a great deal of effort examining the effects of negative advertising on citizens’ perceptions of candidates. Much of this work has used experimental designs and has produced mixed findings supporting one of two competing theories. First, negative ads may harm candidates who sponsor them because citizens tend to dislike negativity. Second, negativity may drive down citizens’ support for the targeted candidate because the attacks give people reasons to reject the target. We argue that the mixed findings produced by prior research may be driven by a disregard for campaign dynamics. We present a critical test of these two theories using data drawn from 80 statewide elections — 37 gubernatorial and 43 U.S. Senate contests — from three election years and public opinion polling collected during the last 12 weeks of each campaign. We find that a candidate’s support declines as her advertising strategy includes a higher proportion of negative ads relative to her opponent and that this process unfolds slowly over the course of the campaign.

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The Runner-Up Effect

Santosh Anagol & Thomas Fujiwara

Journal of Political Economy, August 2016, Pages 927-991

Abstract:
Exploiting regression discontinuity designs in Brazilian, Indian, and Canadian first-past-the-post elections, we document that second-place candidates are substantially more likely than close third-place candidates to run in, and win, subsequent elections. Since both candidates lost the election and had similar electoral performance, this is the effect of being labeled the runner-up. Selection into candidacy is unlikely to explain the effect on winning subsequent elections, and we find no effect of finishing in third place versus fourth place. We develop a simple model of strategic coordination by voters that rationalizes the results and provides further predictions that are supported by the data.

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Backfire: The Unintended Consequences of Partisan Gerrymandering

Dahyeon Jeong & Ajay Shenoy

University of California Working Paper, July 2016

Abstract:
Every 10 years, U.S. states must redraw their Congressional districts. It is widely believed that political parties redraw districts to favor their own candidates. We test this claim by exploiting the discontinuous change in a political party's control of redistricting triggered when its share of seats in the state legislature exceeds 50 percent. We find evidence of gerrymandering, but it has the opposite effect from that intended. Gerrymandering creates districts with narrow majorities of supporters. These majorities are ultimately eroded by demographic shifts and the response of opposing interest groups. Republicans actually win fewer elections when they control redistricting.

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The Pseudoparadox of Partisan Mapmaking and Congressional Competition

Nicholas Goedert

State Politics & Policy Quarterly, forthcoming

Abstract:
Why are fewer congressional elections competitive at the district level when the national electoral environment is at its most competitive? This article explores this “pseudoparadox,” and argues that the answer can be found in partisan redistricting. Through an analysis of 40 years of congressional elections, I find that partisan gerrymanders induce greater competitiveness as national tides increase, largely due to unanticipated consequences of waves adverse to the map-drawing party, particularly in seats held by that party. The phenomenon anecdotally coined by Grofman and Brunell as the “dummymander” is thus actually quite common and has significant effects on rates of congressional competition nationally. In contrast, bipartisan maps are shown to induce lower competition, while nonpartisan maps induce higher competition, under all electoral conditions and competitiveness measures. But the effects of partisan gerrymanders on competition, though strong, can only be seen in interaction with short-term national forces.

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Weekly Fluctuations in Risk Tolerance and Voting Behaviour

Jet Sanders & Rob Jenkins

PLoS ONE, July 2016

Abstract:
Risk tolerance is fundamental to decision-making and behaviour. Here we show that individuals’ tolerance of risk follows a weekly cycle. We observed this cycle directly in a behavioural experiment using the Balloon Analogue Risk Task (Lejuez et al., 2002; Study 1). We also observed it indirectly via voting intentions, gathered from 81,564 responses across 70 opinion polls ahead of the Scottish Independence Referendum of 2014 (Study 2) and 149,064 responses across 77 opinion polls ahead of the United Kingdom European Union membership referendum of 2016 (Study 3). In all three studies, risk-tolerance decreased from Monday to Thursday before returning to a higher level on Friday. This pattern is politically significant because UK elections and referendums are traditionally held on a Thursday — the lowest point for risk tolerance. In particular, it raises the possibility that voting outcomes in the UK could be systematically risk-averse. In line with our analysis, the actual proportion of Yes votes in the Scottish Independence Referendum was 4% lower than forecast. Taken together, our findings reveal that the seven-day weekly cycle may have unexpected consequences for human decision-making. They also suggest that the day on which a vote is held could determine its outcome.

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(Un)Conventional Wisdom and Presidential Politics: The Myth of Convention Locations and Favorite-Son Vice Presidents

David Schultz

PS: Political Science & Politics, July 2016, Pages 420-425

Abstract:
Conventional wisdom pervades presidential politics, and there is no doubt that this will again be true in 2016. First among “old politicians’ tales” is that a political party’s placement of a national convention in a specific state can affect presidential voting there, swinging or flipping it to its presidential candidate. Second, the selection of a vice-presidential candidate as a favorite son (or daughter) will deliver a state’s electoral votes to a presidential ticket. Is either of these pearls of wisdom true? This article tests the truth of both the convention location and favorite-son claims and finds little evidence of their efficacy.

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The abilities and decisions of regular and irregular voters in American presidential elections

Steven Nawara

Journal of Elections, Public Opinion and Parties, forthcoming

Abstract:
While most of the voter turnout literature focuses on the differences between voters and nonvoters, scant attention has been paid to what separates regular voters from the “irregular voters” who move in and out of the electorate. This article shows that citizens who regularly vote will be more knowledgeable and involved in the political system than voters who turnout irregularly. In addition, the article supports the existing claim that it is easier for voters to understand social policies than economic policies. These two principles lead to the hypothesis that economic and social policy preferences will predict the decisions of regular voters while the decisions of irregular voters will be predicted by social policy preferences but not economic preferences. American National Election Studies data from 1988 to 2008 provide support for these hypotheses. Though poor economic conditions may bring irregular voters out to the polls, their ballots are cast for candidates with similar social policy preferences, not necessarily similar economic stances.

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Agency Problems in Political Campaigns: Media Buying and Consulting

Gregory Martin & Zachary Peskowitz

Emory University Working Paper, May 2016

Abstract:
The vast majority of advertising expenditures in congressional campaigns are made not directly by campaigns themselves but indirectly though specialist intermediary firms. Though their revenue ultimately derives from contributions to public campaigns, these firms are privately owned and operated on a for-profit basis. Using a new dataset that includes both revenues and costs of these firms, we examine the profitability of political media consulting. We investigate both whether firms are able to extract economic rents from their intermediary position and whether firms’ pecuniary incentives cause them to make strategic recommendations that deviate from their principals’ interests. We find significant differences across the two major parties: firms working for Republican candidates charge higher prices, exert less effort, and induce less responsiveness in their clients’ advertising expenditures to electoral circumstances than do their Democratic counterparts. We connect this observation to the (left-leaning) distribution of ideology among individual consulting firm employees, arguing that these higher rents serve as an incentive to induce consultants to work against their intrinsic ideological motivations. The internal organization of firms reflects an awareness of and an attempt to mitigate this potential for conflict of interest; firms are made up of ideologically homogeneous partners, and are much more likely to work for ideologically close rather than distant clients.

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Language for Winning Hearts and Minds: Verb Aspect in U.S. Presidential Campaign Speeches for Engaging Emotion

David Havas & Christopher Chapp

Frontiers in Psychology, June 2016

Abstract:
How does language influence the emotions and actions of large audiences? Functionally, emotions help address environmental uncertainty by constraining the body to support adaptive responses and social coordination. We propose emotions provide a similar function in language processing by constraining the mental simulation of language content to facilitate comprehension, and to foster alignment of mental states in message recipients. Consequently, we predicted that emotion-inducing language should be found in speeches specifically designed to create audience alignment – stump speeches of United States presidential candidates. We focused on phrases in the past imperfective verb aspect (“a bad economy was burdening us”) that leave a mental simulation of the language content open-ended, and thus unconstrained, relative to past perfective sentences (“we were burdened by a bad economy”). As predicted, imperfective phrases appeared more frequently in stump versus comparison speeches, relative to perfective phrases. In a subsequent experiment, participants rated phrases from presidential speeches as more emotionally intense when written in the imperfective aspect compared to the same phrases written in the perfective aspect, particularly for sentences perceived as negative in valence. These findings are consistent with the notion that emotions have a role in constraining the comprehension of language, a role that may be used in communication with large audiences.

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Candidate Vulnerability and Exposure to Counterattitudinal Information: Evidence From Two U.S. Presidential Elections

Dustin Carnahan, Kelly Garrett & Emily Lynch

Human Communication Research, forthcoming

Abstract:
Politically motivated selective exposure has traditionally been understood through the lens of long-standing attitudes and beliefs, but the role of environment in shaping information exposure practices merits further consideration. Citizens might respond to the political environment in their information-seeking behavior for numerous reasons. Citizens who believe their position is politically vulnerable have specific cognitive and affective needs that may make them uniquely attuned to counterattitudinal information. In the context of a presidential election, this means that as the defeat of a supported candidate appears more likely, attention to counterattitudinal content will increase. Data collected in the 2008 and 2012 U.S. Presidential elections support this prediction, although this relationship was observed primarily among supporters of the Republican candidate in both elections.

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Social Pressure on Social Media: Using Facebook Status Updates to Increase Voter Turnout

Katherine Haenschen

Journal of Communication, forthcoming

Abstract:
The widespread adoption of the Internet offers tangible potential for increasing political participation through disseminating digital reminders to vote. This study presents three experiments in which confederates mobilize members of their networks to vote by tagging them in Facebook status updates. Relying on the technological affordances of Facebook, treatments publicize individuals' past participation or failure to vote in an ongoing election. The results show substantial increases in turnout greater than that which is usually produced by face-to-face methods. Findings suggest that digital media offer citizens the potential to generate tremendous gains in voter participation, and address concerns that our increasingly digitally networked society may prove harmful to democracy.

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Face Value? Experimental Evidence that Candidate Appearance Influences Electoral Choice

Douglas Ahler et al.

Political Behavior, forthcoming

Abstract:
According to numerous studies, candidates’ looks predict voters’ choices — a finding that raises concerns about voter competence and about the quality of elected officials. This potentially worrisome finding, however, is observational and therefore vulnerable to alternative explanations. To better test the appearance effect, we conducted two experiments. Just before primary and general elections for various offices, we randomly assigned voters to receive ballots with and without candidate photos. Simply showing voters these pictures increased the vote for appearance-advantaged candidates. Experimental evidence therefore supports the view that candidates’ looks could influence some voters. In general elections, we find that high-knowledge voters appear immune to this influence, while low-knowledge voters use appearance as a low-information heuristic. In primaries, however, candidate appearance influences even high-knowledge and strongly partisan voters.

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Incumbency effects in U.S. presidential campaigns: Language patterns matter

Christian Leuprecht & David Skillicorn

Electoral Studies, September 2016, Pages 95–103

Abstract:
Incumbent U.S. presidential candidates have been overwhelmingly successful over the past 150 years. Attempts to explain this success rate have examined both structural advantages enjoyed by incumbents and differences in rhetorical and linguistic style in campaigning, although it is less clear why incumbency conveys an advantage here. This article finds that the language used by U.S. presidential candidates over the past twenty years has an underlying structure associated with electoral success: 1. speech patterns of incumbents differ notably from those they used in their first-term campaign; and 2. speech patterns of winners are different from those of losers. Both differences are consistent, and can therefore be postulated to indicate strength of influence. The resulting inductive model of influential language is characterized by: increased positivity, complete absence of negativity, increased abstraction, and lack of reference to the opposing candidate(s). The greatest intensity of model language is used by incumbents in their second campaign and the least by losers in a first-cycle open campaign. Language improvement by incumbents occurs rapidly, suggesting that it is the result of changing self-perception rather than a conventional learning process. This finding has broader implications, suggesting that both success, and the presence of competing groups trying to make similar arguments, improve the quality of the influencing language used.

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Three Tests for Practical Evaluation of Partisan Gerrymandering

Samuel Wang

Stanford Law Review, June 2016, Pages 1263-1321

Abstract:
Since the U.S. Supreme Court’s Davis v. Bandemer ruling in 1986, partisan gerrymandering for statewide electoral advantage has been held to be justiciable. The existing Supreme Court standard, culminating in Vieth v. Jubelirer and LULAC v. Perry, holds that a test for gerrymandering should demonstrate both intents and effects and that partisan gerrymandering may be recognizable by its asymmetry: for a given distribution of popular votes, if the parties switch places in popular vote, the numbers of seats will change in an unequal fashion. However, the asymmetry standard is only a broad statement of principle, and no analytical method for assessing asymmetry has yet been held by the Supreme Court to be manageable. This Article proposes three statistical tests to reliably assess asymmetry in state-level districting schemes: (1) an unrepresentative distortion in the number of seats won based on expectations from nationwide district characteristics; (2) a discrepancy in winning vote margins between the two parties; and (3) the construction of reliable wins for the party in charge of redistricting, as measured by either the difference between mean and median vote share, or an unusually even distribution of votes across districts. The first test relies on computer simulation to estimate appropriate levels of representation for a given level of popular vote and provides a way to measure the effects of a gerrymander. The second and third tests, which can be used to help evaluate redistricting intent, rely on well-established statistical principles and can be carried out using a hand calculator without examination of maps or redistricting procedures. I apply these standards to a variety of districting schemes, starting from the original “Gerry-mander” of 1812, up to modern cases. In post-2010 congressional elections, partisan gerrymandering in a handful of states generated effects that are larger than the total nationwide effect of population clustering. By applying these standards in two recent cases, I show that Arizona legislative districts (Harris v. Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission) fail to qualify as a partisan gerrymander, but Maryland’s congressional districts (Shapiro v. McManus) do. I propose that an intents-and-effects standard based on these tests is robust enough to mitigate the need to demonstrate predominant partisan intent. The three statistical standards offered here add to the judge’s toolkit for rapidly and rigorously identifying the partisan consequences of redistricting.

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Reprecincting and Voting Behavior

Brian Amos, Daniel Smith & Casey Ste. Claire

Political Behavior, forthcoming

Abstract:
Despite the expansion of convenience voting across the American states, millions of voters continue to cast ballots at their local precincts on Election Day. We argue that those registered voters who are reassigned to a different Election Day polling place prior to an election are less likely to turn out to vote than those assigned to vote at the same precinct location, as a new precinct location incurs both search and transportation costs on reassigned voters. Utilizing voter file data and precinct shape files from Manatee County, Florida, from before and after the 2014 General Election, we demonstrate that the redrawing of precinct boundaries and the designation of Election Day polling places is not a purely technical matter for local election administrators, but may affect voter turnout of some registered voters more than others. Controlling for a host of demographic, partisan, vote history, and geospatial factors, we find significantly lower turnout among registered voters who were reassigned to a new Election Day precinct compared to those who were not, an effect not equally offset by those voters turning to other available modes of voting (either early in-person or absentee). All else equal, we find that registered Hispanic voters were significantly more likely to abstain from voting as a result of being reassigned than any other racial group.

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A Bipartisan Election Reform? Explaining Support for Online Voter Registration in the American States

William Hicks, Seth McKee & Daniel Smith

American Politics Research, forthcoming

Abstract:
Online voter registration (OVR) is an election reform that has recently taken hold in more than half of the American states. Election administration observers have marveled at both the rapid diffusion and bipartisan support associated with legislative passage of OVR. We examine the likelihood a lawmaker voted in favor or against OVR in legislatures approving the reform. Despite the leading narrative of both parties overwhelmingly embracing OVR, we find that lawmaker support is clearly rooted in political calculations. Most prominent is a partisan divide, with Republicans in polarized legislatures with a Democratic majority decidedly less supportive of OVR. In addition, a host of contextual factors tied to the variation in partisan and electoral power affect the probability a state legislator votes in favor of this reform. We argue that the near-consensus position of Democrats (more than 90% voted “yea” on OVR) and the impressive supermajority of Republicans backing OVR (greater than 70%) have diverted attention from the reasons why there is opposition to this seemingly noncontroversial reform.

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Changing the Clock: The Role of Campaigns in the Timing of Vote Decision

Michael Henderson & Sunshine Hillygus

Public Opinion Quarterly, forthcoming

Abstract:
Time of vote decision research has shaped our understanding of the nature and influence of campaigns. Traditionally, time of decision has been viewed primarily as a reflection of individual-level characteristics, especially political interest or attentiveness. We use eight waves of panel survey data to evaluate how campaign context interacts with attentiveness to affect time of decision in the 2008 US presidential election. Our data show that less politically interested respondents living in locations where campaigning was most intense made up their minds earlier than those living elsewhere, but there is no such difference among the most interested. Rather than time of decision simply constraining campaign effects, these results suggest that campaigns structure the time of decision.

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Strafing, Spats, and Skirmishes: Social Dynamics of Negative Campaigning on Twitter

Justin Gross & Kaylee Johnson

University of Massachusetts Working Paper, June 2016

Abstract:
What drives candidates to “go negative” and — in the case of multiple candidates — against whom? Using a unique dataset consisting of all tweets made by the seventeen Republican presidential candidates in the 2016 contest, we assess predictors of negative affect in online interactions with other candidates. Twitter is a free platform, and candidates therefore face no resource limitations when using Twitter; this makes Twitter a wellspring of information about the sort of campaigning candidates might do given unlimited resources. We find that tweet negativity within the network increases as the election approaches. In virtually none of the candidate pairs characterized by asymmetric negativity are attacks waged by a higher-status on a lower-status candidate. We also find support for the idea that tightening competition leads to increased negativity among all candidates (even and especially among frontrunners). Finally, we demonstrate that overall inter-candidate tweeting intensifies as the field narrows, with tweets per dyad per week increasing by orders of magnitude at each stage of the race.

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Closed primaries versus top-two primaries

Pablo Amorós, Socorro Puy & Ricardo Martínez

Public Choice, April 2016, Pages 21-35

Abstract:
The top-two primaries recently approved in several US states eliminate closed party primaries and create instead a single ballot in which the first and second place winners pass to the general election. We conduct a theoretical analysis to compare the electoral consequences of top-two primaries with those of closed primaries. Each primary procedure induces a sequential game with three stages: candidate-entry stage, primary elections, and general election. We analyze the equilibria of these games and show that top-two primaries contribute to political moderation. In particular, when the median voter is extreme, closed primaries always generate extreme winners and, yet, top-two primaries can generate moderate winners. Furthermore, when the median voter is moderate but the partisan median voter of her party is extreme (and some additional mild conditions hold), closed primaries always generate extreme winners while top-two primaries always generate moderate winners. We also show that top-two primaries increase the number of swing states since, in certain cases, the party affiliation of the winner under top-two primaries may not coincide with the party affiliation of the median voter.

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The Timing of Partisan Media Effects during a Presidential Election

Glen Smith

Political Research Quarterly, forthcoming

Abstract:
This article examines when partisan media effects occur during presidential campaigns. I argue that partisan media are most likely to influence candidate impressions early in the election cycle, when voters have less crystallized impressions of the candidates and are less motivated to defend their party’s nominee. Using multiple methods and two large-scale surveys spanning 2008, I show that Fox News affected favorability toward Barack Obama during the first five months of the election year, but those effects largely disappeared over the last five months. The results varied by political knowledge, however, as Fox News affected low-knowledge viewers throughout the entire year, but only affected high-knowledge viewers early in the election cycle. These results provide important new evidence on how partisan media affect viewers and when those effects occur during a presidential election.

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The Effects of Counterstereotypic Gender Strategies on Candidate Evaluations

Nichole Bauer

Political Psychology, forthcoming

Abstract:
Voters do not associate female candidates with feminine stereotypes, but voters also do not associate female candidates with the qualities most valued in political leaders such as experience and knowledge. Current research offers conflicting conclusions on whether female candidates benefit from breaking with feminine norms or face a backlash for being too aggressive and not likable enough. Using a series of experiments, I show how counterstereotypic gender strategies, including women emphasizing masculine trait competencies, improve evaluations of female candidates along both masculine and feminine leadership dimensions. These results offer novel insights into how female candidates can overcome perceptual deficits among voters that they lack critical masculine leadership qualities. I also show that female candidates can overcome these biases without losing on traditional feminine strengths such as warmth and likability. However, counterstereotypic female candidates can face a “likability” backlash from out-partisan voters. These findings suggest counterstereotypes may be more beneficial for female candidates in a primary election context when voters are copartisans rather than general elections where candidates often need cross-partisan support.

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Ballot order effects in direct democracy elections

John Matsusaka

Public Choice, June 2016, Pages 257-276

Abstract:
Many political practitioners believe that voters are more likely to approve propositions listed at the top than the bottom of the ballot, potentially distorting democratic decision making, and this belief influences election laws across the United States. Numerous studies have investigated ballot order effects in candidate elections, but there is little evidence for direct democracy elections, and identification of causal effects is challenging. This paper offers two strategies for identifying the effect of ballot order in proposition elections, using data from California during 1958–2014 and Texas during 1986–2015. The evidence suggests that propositions are not advantaged by being listed at the top compared to the bottom of the ballot. Approval rates are lower with more propositions on the ballot.

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Negative Campaigning in the Social Media Age: Attack Advertising on Facebook

Zachary Auter & Jeffrey Fine

Political Behavior, forthcoming

Abstract:
Recent studies examine politicians’ decisions to use social media, as well as the content of the messages that these political actors disseminate on social media platforms. We contribute to this literature by examining how race competitiveness and a candidate’s position in the race relative to her opponent affect their decisions to issue attacks. Through content analysis of nearly 15,000 Facebook posts for tone (positive or negative), we find that while competitive races encourage both candidates to issue more negative posts, candidates in less competitive races embrace attack messages with more or less frequency depending on whether they trail or lead their opponent. We find that social media negativity is much more likely to be a desperation strategy employed by underdog candidates in less competitive races. We also run separate models examining the factors that drive policy and personal attacks. While underdog candidates are more likely to engage in issue attacks, candidates in competitive races are significantly more likely to use Facebook to make personal attacks.

By KEVIN LEWIS | 09:00:00 AM

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Soul brothers

Cognitive Dissonance, Elections, and Religion: How Partisanship and the Political Landscape Shape Religious Behaviors

Michele Margolis

Public Opinion Quarterly, forthcoming

Abstract:
How do elections affect citizens? This paper shows that elections can have an impact in an area where researchers least expect it: an individual’s religious life. It does so by drawing on psychologists’ theory of compensatory control and testing whether individuals’ reported religious behaviors and beliefs fluctuate with their chosen political party’s fortunes. Both an originally collected panel data set and over-time cross-sectional data reveal that Democrats (Republicans) are more likely to report attending religious services and praying when Republicans (Democrats) control the White House. Rates of reported religious behaviors then decline when a copartisan is president. The results demonstrate political identities’ strength and ability to influence nonpolitical behaviors, even those thought to be stable and impervious to politics.

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The Gender Pray Gap: Wage Labor and the Religiosity of High-Earning Women and Men

Landon Schnabel

Gender & Society, August 2016, Pages 643-669

Abstract:
Social scientists agree that women are generally more religious than men, but disagree about whether the differences are universal or contingent on social context. This study uses General Social Survey data to explore differences in religiosity between, as well as among, women and men by level of individual earned income. Extending previous research, I focus on high earners with other groups included for comparison. Predicted probabilities based upon fully interacted models provide four key findings: (1) There are no significant gender differences among high earners; (2) high-earning women are less religious than low-earning women; (3) high-earning men are more religious than low-earning men; and (4) differences among women and among men at different earnings levels are just as large as average differences between women and men. Further analyses demonstrate that the relationship between gender, earnings, and religiosity varies by race. The findings demonstrate the utility of intersectional approaches for understanding gender differences in religiosity. Beyond the implications specific to the gender differences in religiosity literature, this study also indicates that religion is an important, yet often underemphasized, aspect of our intersectional selves.

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Does Higher Education Cause Religious Decline?: A Longitudinal Analysis of the Within- and Between-Person Effects of Higher Education on Religiosity

Philip Schwadel

Sociological Quarterly, forthcoming

Abstract:
Although there is ample empirical evidence of the associations between higher education and various aspects of religiosity, the causal mechanisms producing these associations remain unclear. I use four waves of longitudinal data, with respondents ranging in age from 13 to 29, to model the within- and between-person effects of higher education on several measures of religiosity. The results show that earning a bachelor's degree is associated with within-person declines in some but not all measured aspects of religiosity, which partially supports the argument that higher education causes religious decline. The results also suggest that those predisposed to attending religious services self-select into higher education, that relatively religious youth in general self-select into nonelite colleges, and that those with low levels of religious belief self-select into elite universities. These findings further understanding of the associations between social class and religion, particularly the causal effects of higher education.

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The Social Context of Organized Nonbelief: County-Level Predictors of Nonbeliever Organizations in the United States

Alfredo García & Joseph Blankholm

Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, March 2016, Pages 70–90

Abstract:
Many recent social scientific studies have noted that the percentage of Americans with no religious affiliation is on the rise, but few have examined the nonbeliever organizations that some of these “nones” might join. This study uses an original data set, the first attempt at documenting the population of local nonbeliever organizations in the United States, to explore where these groups are more likely to flourish. Though one might assume that less religious counties, as measured by the percentage of those with no stated religious affiliation, would be more likely to contain nonbeliever organizations, this article provides evidence that they emerge more frequently and in greater numbers in counties with proportionally more evangelical Protestants. The percentage of evangelicals among a county's population is strongly associated with both the existence (dichotomously coded) and the number of nonbeliever organizations, even when controlling for a range of demographic and institutional factors.

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Perceptions of Threat to Religious Liberty

Kirby Goidel, Brian Smentkowski & Craig Freeman

PS: Political Science & Politics, July 2016, Pages 426-432

Abstract:
Religious freedom in the United States is widely enjoyed and vigorously protected. Yet, a substantial percentage of Americans believe that their religious liberties are threatened. This article investigates the origins of these perceptions, focusing on the role of political orientations, religious identities and behaviors, social issues (i.e., gay marriage and abortion), and news attentiveness. We found that perceptions of threat are related to political orientations (i.e., partisan affiliation, ideology, and Tea Party identification) and issue positions (i.e., opposition to gay marriage). Consistent with theories of elite cue-taking, the effects of partisan affiliation are contingent on news attentiveness. Republicans who pay closer attention to the news are more likely to state that their religious liberties are threatened.

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The Religiosity as Social Value Hypothesis: A Multi-Method Replication and Extension Across 65 Countries and Three Levels of Spatial Aggregation

Jochen Gebauer et al.

Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, forthcoming

Abstract:
Are religious people psychologically better or worse adjusted than their nonreligious counterparts? Hundreds of studies have reported a positive relation between religiosity and psychological adjustment. Recently, however, a comparatively small number of cross-cultural studies has questioned this staple of religiosity research. The latter studies find that religious adjustment benefits are restricted to religious cultures. Gebauer, Sedikides, and Neberich (2012) suggested the religiosity as social value hypothesis (RASV) as one explanation for those cross-cultural differences. RASV states that, in religious cultures, religiosity possesses much social value, and, as such, religious people will feel particularly good about themselves. In secular cultures, however, religiosity possesses limited social value, and, as such, religious people will feel less good about themselves, if at all. Yet, previous evidence has been inconclusive regarding RASV and regarding cross-cultural differences in religious adjustment benefits more generally. To clarify matters, we conducted 3 replication studies. We examined the relation between religiosity and self-esteem (the most direct and appropriate adjustment indicator, according to RASV) in a self-report study across 65 countries (N = 2,195,301), an informant-report study across 36 countries (N = 560,264), and another self-report study across 1,932 urban areas from 243 federal states in 18 countries (N = 1,188,536). Moreover, we scrutinized our results against 7, previously untested, alternative explanations. Our results fully and firmly replicated and extended prior evidence for cross-cultural differences in religious adjustment benefits. These cross-cultural differences were best explained by RASV.

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Religious beliefs and local government financing, investment, and cash holding decisions

Yangyang Chen et al.

Journal of Empirical Finance, September 2016, Pages 258–271

Abstract:
This paper is the first to examine the association between religious beliefs and the local government financing, investment and cash holding decisions. Using a sample of 15,204 county-year observations for census years between 1992 and 2012, we show that the degree of religiosity is negatively associated with the level of local government debt and investments while it is positively associated with accumulated cash holdings. Our results indicate that local governments in counties with a higher degree of religiosity are more conservatively managed. To validate the main findings we conduct a range of robustness tests and demonstrate that our main results hold.

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Make Love and Lose Your Religion and Virtue: Recalling Sexual Experiences Undermines Spiritual Intentions and Moral Behavior

Caroline Rigo, Filip Uzarevic & Vassilis Saroglou

Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, March 2016, Pages 23–39

Abstract:
In contrast with traditional considerations, sexuality is often perceived today as being rather compatible with religion/spirituality and morality. However, there may be some inherent opposition between (a) sexuality (thoughts, affects, and pleasure) and (b) religion/spirituality (attitudes, motives) and (interpersonal) morality (dispositions, behavior). The two imply, respectively, self-enhancement versus self-transcendence, disinhibition versus self-control, and disgust indifference versus sensitivity. We hypothesized that sexual experience attenuates spiritual and moral concerns and behaviors. In three online experiments, young adults were asked to recall a personal sexual experience. Compared to a control condition, sexual induction diminished spiritual behavioral intentions (Experiments 1 and 2), in particular among those with high individual disinhibition (Experiment 1), as well as behaviors of prosociality and integrity/honesty (Experiment 3). The effects were independent of individual religiousness/spirituality. These findings suggest that combining sexual pleasure with self-transcendence and moral perfection, even if a legitimate ideal, is not an easy enterprise.

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When private reporting is more positive than public reporting: Pluralistic ignorance towards atheists

Garrett Strosser et al.

Social Psychology, Summer 2016, Pages 150-162

Abstract:
Across three studies, we assessed the impact of perceived social norms on attitudes and positive behavioral intentions towards atheists and religious believers. Reported attitudes, reported acceptability of expressing positive and negative attitudes, and reported positive behavioral intentions disproportionately favored religious believers over atheists. However, participants reported a higher likelihood of engaging in positive behaviors towards atheists when the threat of public scrutiny was limited, indicating that the social norm in the US may be suppressing privately held, positive behavioral intentions that would otherwise support atheists, creating a state of pluralistic ignorance. Individuals also reported having more positive attitudes and a higher level of positive behavioral intentions towards religious believers relative to others. Finally, estimates of the prevalence of religious believers in the population also tied directly to one’s perception of the acceptability of expressing positive and negative attitudes towards these groups.

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Authoritarianism and Public Opinion on Church and State in the United States

Jeremiah Castle

Politics and Religion, forthcoming

Abstract:
Despite the continued debate over the relationship between church and state in American politics, our understanding of the sources of attitudes on controversies over religious establishment and religious free exercise is limited. I argue that authoritarianism is an unrecognized but important predictor of mass-level attitudes on church and state. I argue that individuals with higher levels of authoritarianism are more likely to support religious establishment as a means of maintaining social conformity and reinforcing the existing social order. Likewise, those with higher levels of authoritarianism should exhibit reduced support for religious free exercise when minority groups are in question as a means of imposing greater costs on social out-groups. Using data from the 2008 Cooperative Campaign Analysis Project, I find strong support for my theory. Even after controlling for a variety of alternative explanations, authoritarianism remains an important factor in attitudes toward both religious establishment and religious free exercise.

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The Price of the Calling: Exploring Clergy Compensation Using Current Population Survey Data

Cyrus Schleifer & Mark Chaves

Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, March 2016, Pages 130–152

Abstract:
Previous research shows that clergy make less money than others with similar levels of education. We use Current Population Survey data to offer five contributions to knowledge about clergy compensation. First, we document and take into account the shift in clergy compensation from the provision of free housing to the payment of housing allowances. Second, although the clergy earnings disadvantage appears to have increased over the last 40 years relative to their educational peers, the picture changes when we exclude the highest income occupations. Clergy have lost ground to doctors, lawyers, and investment bankers, but they have gained ground relative to everyone else. Third, these gains are largely because of decline in the number of hours clergy report working. Fourth, we show that clergy working in churches earn less than clergy working elsewhere. Fifth, we document immediate wage penalties for those who become clergy and, among clergy, for those who begin to work in congregations. Overall, although clergy still earn less than comparable workers, their position has improved in recent decades relative to all but the highest earning occupations.

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The association between religious homogamy and reproduction

Martin Fieder & Susanne Huber

Proceedings of the Royal Society: Biological Sciences, 13 July 2016

Abstract:
Individuals more strongly affiliated to religion have on average more children than less religious ones. Here, based on census data of 3 658 650 women aged 46–60 years from 32 countries provided by IPUMS International and data from the Wisconsin Longitudinal Study (n = 2400 women, aged 53–57 years), we show that religious homogamy is also associated with higher reproduction in terms of a higher number of children and a lower chance of remaining childless. We argue that, together with the relationship between general religious intensity and number of children, religious homogamy has reproductive consequences. These may impact future demographic developments and could have also played a role in the biological evolution of humans.

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Music As a Sacred Cue? Effects of Religious Music on Moral Behavior

Martin Lang et al.

Frontiers in Psychology, June 2016

Abstract:
Religion can have an important influence in moral decision-making, and religious reminders may deter people from unethical behavior. Previous research indicated that religious contexts may increase prosocial behavior and reduce cheating. However, the perceptual-behavioral link between religious contexts and decision-making lacks thorough scientific understanding. This study adds to the current literature by testing the effects of purely audial religious symbols (instrumental music) on moral behavior across three different sites: Mauritius, the Czech Republic, and the USA. Participants were exposed to one of three kinds of auditory stimuli (religious, secular, or white noise), and subsequently were given a chance to dishonestly report on solved mathematical equations in order to increase their monetary reward. The results showed cross-cultural differences in the effects of religious music on moral behavior, as well as a significant interaction between condition and religiosity across all sites, suggesting that religious participants were more influenced by the auditory religious stimuli than non-religious participants. We propose that religious music can function as a subtle cue associated with moral standards via cultural socialization and ritual participation. Such associative learning can charge music with specific meanings and create sacred cues that influence normative behavior. Our findings provide preliminary support for this view, which we hope further research will investigate more closely.

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Narrating and Navigating Authorities: Evangelical and Mainline Protestant Interpretations of the Bible and Science

Esther Chan & Elaine Howard Ecklund

Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, March 2016, Pages 54–69

Abstract:
Research on the way Protestants interpret the Bible in relationship to science has tended to focus on biblical literalists; less research, however, has examined the heterogeneity of how nonliteralists interpret the Bible. Utilizing data from semi-structured interviews with 77 evangelical and mainline Protestants who attend high-SES congregations, we find that members of both groups draw on similar interpretation strategies in discussing the Bible and evolution. Both eschew literal interpretations of the Bible, demarcate boundaries between the Bible and science, and subsume evolution under broader theological beliefs. Mainline Protestants and evangelicals differ in the way they interpret miracles, with mainline Protestants revealing more openness to scientific and social interpretations of the Bible's miracles, while evangelicals emphasize God's authority over nature. Findings show that different strategies are evoked depending on the issue discussed, revealing implications for a deeper understanding of the way different traditions provide resources for interpreting the Bible and its relationship to scientific issues. Finally, findings contribute to a more robust knowledge of boundary work between the Bible and science as institutional and epistemic authorities.

By KEVIN LEWIS | 09:00:00 AM


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