What I learned from… Samuel DeCanio

DeCanio, S. (2011) Populism, Paranoia, and the Politics of Free Silver. Studies in American Political Development, 25(1), 1-26. In 1896, a Democrat politician named William Jennings Bryan realized that people were very angry at banks and existing monetary policy. He then set out to get elected as President of the United States on the basis…

What I learned from… Rod Dacombe

Rod Dacombe (2011) Can we argue against it? Performance management and state funding of voluntary organizations in the UK. Public Money & Management, 31(3), 159-166. Say you volunteer to help an old lady carrying groceries from the store. Should she thank you if you drag the bags across the street and break everything that she…

What I learned from… Elisa Cavatorta

Cavatorta, E. (2010) Unobserved common factors in military expenditure interactions across MENA countries. Defence and Peace Economics, 21(4), 301-316. What Elisa is interested in doing here is to go beyond the most typical variables used to explain military expenditure (monetary capacity, perception of external threats, perception of internal threats). Although I am using the word…

What I learned from… Damien Bol

Bol, D. (2016). Electoral reform, values and party self-interest. Party Politics, 22(1), 93-104. Political parties need to follow electoral rules to get elected but, once elected, they can (to some extent) change these rules. What drives them to support changes? Is it a desire to be re-elected or the benefit of society? Apparently, is a…

What I learned from… Adrian Blau

Blau, A., 2011. Uncertainty and the History of Ideas. History and Theory, 50(3), pp.358-372. Adrian’s interest in this article is to improve the way in which intellectual historians manage the uncertainties associated with their research: Adrian notes two broad types of empirical phenomena faced by intellectual historians: actions and belief. Actions refer to ‘what happened’…

What I learned from… Sarah Birch

Birch, S., 2008. Electoral institutions and popular confidence in electoral processes: A cross-national analysis. Electoral Studies, 27(2), pp.305-320. You know an article is relevant when despite been written almost a decade ago it immediately makes you think of the challenges we face today. I mean, just take a look at the following extract: … electoral…