It begins by examining the roles of the basic actors in elections—voters, candidates, parties and interest groups—and the institutional process through which the actors move. The analytical techniques presented in the first part of the book are then applied to questions about the effects of money and the mass media on electoral outcomes, the extent to which elections can control errant officials, and the problems of measuring public opinion and preferences. Special attention is devoted to the unique issues involved in the congressional redistricting as well as presidential primaries and the Electoral College. The analysis is extended to consider the roles played my minor party and independent candidates and the problems minorities face in achieving representation in the American electoral process.
Increasingly, political scientists use the term 'experiment' or 'experimental' to describe their empirical research. One of the primary reasons for doing so is the advantage of experiments in establishing causal inferences. In this book, Rebecca B. Morton and Kenneth C. Williams discuss in detail how experiments and experimental reasoning with observational data can help researchers determine causality. They explore how control and random assignment mechanisms work, examining both the Rubin causal model and the formal theory approaches to causality. They also cover general topics in experimentation such as the history of experimentation in political science; internal and external validity of experimental research; types of experiments - field, laboratory, virtual, and survey - and how to choose, recruit, and motivate subjects in experiments. They investigate ethical issues in experimentation, the process of securing approval from institutional review boards for human subject research, and the use of deception in experimentation.
At present much of political science consists of a large body of formal mathematical work that remains largely unexplored empirically and an expanding use of sophisticated statistical techniques. While there are examples of noteworthy efforts to bridge the gap between these, there is still a need for much more cooperative work between formal theorists and empirical researchers in the discipline. This book explores how empirical analysis has, can, and should be used to evaluate formal models in political science. The book is intended to be a guide for active and future political scientists who are confronting the issues of empirical analysis with formal models in their work and as a basis for a needed dialogue between empirical and formal theoretical researchers in political science. These developments, if combined, are potentially a basis for a new revolution in political science.
Experimental political science is a rapidly expanding field. This book provides an in-depth discussion of the core challenges in experimental research, written by experienced experimentalists. The common theme running through and linking the chapters is the application of experimental research in the twin fields of voting behaviour and political institutions. Topics covered include the implications of design choices on theory testing capacities and pre-implementation examination of political mechanisms, laboratory and survey experiments, the application of triangulation designs using different experimental methods, potentials of data analysis using both quantitative and qualitative methods, as well as inferences with respect to constructs, constituencies, and causal claims, in particular in the context of repeated play. The main emphasis of this book is on the implementation of principles in experimental political science and the reflection of actual practices.
The Oxford Handbooks of Political Science are the essential guide to the state of political science today. With engaging contributions from major international scholars The Oxford Handbook of Political Methodology provides the key point of reference for anyone working throughout the discipline.
Population-based survey experiments have become an invaluable tool for social scientists struggling to generalize laboratory-based results, and for survey researchers besieged by uncertainties about causality. Thanks to technological advances in recent years, experiments can now be administered to random samples of the population to which a theory applies. Yet until now, there was no self-contained resource for social scientists seeking a concise and accessible overview of this methodology, its strengths and weaknesses, and the unique challenges it poses for implementation and analysis. Drawing on examples from across the social sciences, this book covers everything you need to know to plan,...
Hacking the Electorate focuses on the consequences of campaigns using microtargeting databases to mobilize voters in elections. Eitan Hersh shows that most of what campaigns know about voters comes from a core set of public records, and the content of public records varies from state to state. This variation accounts for differences in campaign strategies and voter coalitions across the nation.