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SocArXiv papers

  • Nigeria's Petroleum Sector and GDP - The Missing Oil Refining Link
    Nigeria is generally referred to as an ‘oil economy’ because of the country’s large amount of oil reserves Yet, the petroleum sector in Nigeria currently contributes less than 10 percent of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP). In comparison, some Gulf states petroleum sector’s GDP contribution is usually more than 30 percent. A fundamental reappraisal of the Nigeria’s petroleum sector’s relationship with the economy is required. This paper posits that the missing link between the petroleum sector and Nigeria’s GDP growth is the country’s petroleum refining capacity. Capacity utilization of Nigeria’s refineries dropped to 14 percent in 2014 against a global average refining capacity utilization of 90 percent. The constraints of crude oil supply to Nigeria’s refineries are revealed as well as policy interventions by the Federal Government of Nigeria aimed to increase in-country oil refining capacity. Refining capacity is suggested as an antidote to Nigeria’s so-called ‘resource curse’.
  • Getting to the Heart of Masculinity Stressors: Masculinity Threats Induce Pronounced Vagal Withdrawal during a Speaking Task
    Preprint, final version in Annals of Behavioral Medicine available at:
  • Sentiment Analysis - Interview Transcripts
    One-on-one interviews and the analysis of their transcripts is the most common way researchers get into depth to obtain detailed insights. These insights are highly subjective and lack objectivity. We demonstrate in this paper a method and a use case to bring objectivity to this analysis. We present the use of NLP to generate sentiment analysis and perform various quantitative techniques. This analysis is useful in deriving insights by finding patterns and building a simple linear model to explain the variation in sentiment pattern. We also present a view about the usage of this technique for the effective and optimal time usage by researchers to learn maximum from outlier interviews.
  • The world system in the information age: structure, processes, and technologies
    The new information age has the potential to not only alter the historical path of world system development as other socio-technological paradigmatic shifts have done, but to transform it substantially. One school of thought argues for a complete upending of past patterns with nation-states in their hierarchical alignment as the center core and periphery of power in this system. An alternative view instead argues that the regularized interaction that characterizes a world system may envisage a number of modes of production without altering its fundamental structure). The world system in this view is made up of a variety of complex intraorganizational and interorganizational networks intersecting with geographical networks structured particularly around linked clusters of socioeconomic activity. Information and carrier technologies based on new forms of information technologies and their connection to network technologies play a vital role in the long-term evolution of world system development characterized by both path-dependencies and major transformations that result from technological innovations. While digital information technologies significantly alter the processing and use of information as a central element of power and control within this network structure and therefore its network logic, they do not break the evolutionary process of world system development.
  • The Effects of Genetic Testing for Lynch Syndrome on Emotional Support Networks in Families
    Genetic risk is particularly salient for families, and testing for genetic conditions is necessarily a family level process. Thus, risk for genetic disease represents a collective stressor shared by family members. According to communal coping theory, families may adapt to such risk vis-a-vis interpersonal exchange of support resources. We propose that communal coping is operationalized through the pattern of supportive relationships observed between individual family members. While past research has examined support exchange of family members who received genetic testing, the roles of family members who declined testing, or were not otherwise at risk for disease, have not been fully examined. In this study, we take a social network perspective to map communal coping mechanisms to their underlying social interactions including those who declined testing or not at risk. Specifically, we examine the exchange of emotional support resources in families at risk of Lynch syndrome (LS), a dominantly inherited cancer susceptibility syndrome. Our results reveal that communal coping involves a combination of network processes entailing internal and external support sources and depends on the testing-status of individual family members. Thus, the processes giving rise to support systems through communal coping in the context of families affected by LS are more structural-that is interpersonal-than they are personal.
  • Did it Matter? Response of public interest in the environment to the papal encyclical, Laudato Si’
    This study investigates changes in public interest in the environment after the release of Laudato Si’. Comparisons between searches for church-related and environmental topics before and after its release demonstrate significantly raised public interest in both areas. There were important differences between developed countries and countries with other economic classifications. After decades of declining interest in the environment, Laudato Si’ may be catalyzing societal transformation similar to that performed by the 1969 encyclical Humanae Vitae. Regulation of abortion went from a non-political issue in 1969 to a primary dividing line between the political parties in 1976. Two years after release of Laudato Si’, public interest in the environment may be growing. With a long-term sustainability plan for a likely growing Catholic environmental movement, there is reason for hope that environmental progress is just around the corner.
  • Trends in Black and White Opioid Mortality in the United States, 1979–2015
  • Systematic comparative approaches to the archaeological record
    Increasingly, interdisciplinary research teams are coming together to try to establish regularities, over space and time, in the complex system that is the human phenomenon. Although vocabulary and tools have changed, the questions that animate this research program bear striking similarity to those pursued by nineteenth-century intellectuals in a quest to establish universal laws shaping human affairs. In fact, that very quest provided the impetus for the emergence of what would later become distinct disciplines in the social and historical sciences, including anthropology and sociology. Why, then, is this interdisciplinary research program often met with skepticism, or even outright resistance, within anthropology? In this chapter I provide a brief outline of developments in the history of anthropology leading to this state of affairs, in the hope of alleviating misunderstanding between those who support the interdisciplinary research program and those who oppose it. As a practical contribution toward this end, I then provide an overview of key established resources for systematic comparative approaches to the archaeological record. I conclude by discussing challenges and opportunities in this area at the interface with recent developments in related archaeological practice.
  • There Will Be Numbers
    Beginnings are always hard to trace. They tend to belong more to the realm of myth, as Tristram Shandy well knew. At what point did it become necessary, in the sense of unavoidable, to use computation to study culture? Was it a certain polemic, new kinds of data (Google Books, Project Gutenberg), the rise of analytical techniques (natural language processing, machine learning), technologies such as the internet or social media, or simply that powerful social actor called "critical mass"? It is hard to say with much certainty, although I suspect people will be battling over this for years to come. For many, of course, there is nothing necessary about this approach at all. It seems profoundly unnecessary. It consumes resources, it is politically and technologically expedient, i.e. it fails to resist.
  • There Will Be Numbers
  • Social Media Sellout - The Increasing Role of Product Promotion on YouTube
    Since its foundation in 2005, YouTube, which is considered to be the largest video sharing site, has undergone substantial changes. Over the last decade, the platform developed into a leading marketing tool used for product promotion by social media influencers. Past research indicates that these influencers are regarded as opinion leaders and cooperate with brands to market products on YouTube through electronic-word-of-mouth mechanisms. However, surprisingly little is known about the magnitude of this phenomenon. In our article, we make a first attempt to quantify product promotion and use an original dataset of 139,475 videos created by German YouTube channels between 2009 and 2017. Applying methods for automated content analysis, we find that YouTube users indeed are confronted with an ever-growing share of product promotion, particularly in the beauty and fashion sector. Our findings fuel concerns regarding the social and economic impact of influencers, especially on younger target groups.
  • Use of Death Counts From Vital Statistics to Calculate Excess Deaths in Puerto Rico Following Hurricane Maria
  • Estimates of excess deaths in Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria
    BACKGROUND: This descriptive finding examines excess deaths following Hurricane María, in Puerto Rico for September and October 2017. OBJECTIVE: We seek to determine the degree of excess deaths in Puerto Rico based on historical patterns of variability in deaths by month for the 2010-2016 period and using estimation techniques. METHODS: Data for this study come from death records from the Puerto Rico Vital Statistics system. We aggregated data by month and year (2010-2016) and produced means (expected deaths) and 95% confidence intervals (C.I., or patterns of variability) for each month. Using public statements from the Puerto Rico Department of Public Safety, we estimate the number of deaths for September and October 2017 and compare it to the level of expected deaths considering the pattern of variability. RESULTS: Expected deaths for September and October were 2,383 (95% C.I. 2,296-2,469) and 2,428 (95% C.I. 2,380 - 2,476), respectively. Estimates for total deaths, for September and October 2017 were 2,987 (95% CI 2,900-3,074) and 3,043 (95% C.I. 2,995-3,091), respectively. The difference between our estimates and the upper 95% CI for the average deaths is 518 deaths for September and 567 deaths for October. CONCLUSIONS: The mortality burden may higher than official counts, and may exceed the current official death toll by a factor of 10 or more.
  • "Yeah, I know this": Student Experiences in a Blended MicroMasters Program
    As providers of massive open online courses (MOOCs) continue to experiment with new mechanisms for providing transferable course credit and alternative credentials (Caudill, 2017; Hollands, 2017; Wulf, Blohm, & Brenner, 2014), there has been a growing interest in the experiences of students in these programs. This mixed-methods studies uses student interviews, survey responses, and MOOC log data to examine the experience of students participating in an edX MicroMasters in a private university in the Northeastern United States. We found that the program attracted a cohort of mid-career professionals, largely in developed countries, who were seeking to enhance their skills in order to advance their careers. Successful students were more likely to be more motivated by “mastery” goals, focusing on gaining new skills and knowledge, than “performance” goals such as grades or credentials and many students who earned a credential said they did not think the credential by itself would help them advance their careers. For residential instructors, the findings of this study suggest that MOOC-based blended program can be an effective way of recruiting highly-qualified non-traditional applicants to residential programs
  • Unequal marriage markets: Sex ratios and first marriage among Black and White women
    Using the marital events data from the American Community Survey for the first time, we examine the association between the quantity and characteristics of unmarried men and first marriage for Black and White women ages 20-45. We incorporate both unmarried sex ratios and the economic status of unmarried men within each racial group, using multilevel logistic models. We find higher marriage odds in markets with more (same-race) unmarried men, holding constant women’s own characteristics. In addition, for White women only, local men’s education and employment rates also predict higher odds of women’s first marriage. The findings imply that if White and Black women experienced similar unmarried sex ratios in their local markets, the gap in first marriage rates would be much smaller. We conclude that marriage promotion policies may be ineffective in part because they are targeting women who face structural barriers to marriage in their local marriage markets.
  • Black Hole Sun: Binarism and Gravity in Cultural Fields
    Sociologicial analyses of artistic practice have long drawn on theoretical traditions grounded in binaries and dualisms. Varied analytical strategies, including field theoretical, ecological, and post-structuralist approaches, center art objects and their movements in and across markets, where binaristic visions of art worlds do offer significant leverage. But when we move away from such objects and look to artistic practices these lenses provide, at best, a blurred image with meaningful blind spots. Here, I suggest an alternative vision of artistic practice – one based on gravity rather than polarity – that captures the ways individuals and their actions make sense in a specific universe of meaning without forcing them into fundamentally competitive and economistic relationships. This paper draws on findings from a four year study of visual artists in the United States to promote new theoretical and analytical directions for sociological analyses of artists and artistic practice. It outlines a generative alternative to binarism that provides new leverage on four persistent issues: cultural change in occupational fields; actors’ attempts to manage overlapping but incommensurate forms of recognition, reputation, attention, and success; the persistent hegemony of markets for objects in both vernacular and sociological understandings of artistic practice; and, finally, questions of visibility and legitimacy central to understanding boundary formation and boundary work in creative fields.
  • Mind, Modernity, Madness: or how Anglomania causes Anomie, Delusion and Deception
    Although Liah Greenfeld's book Mind, Modernity, Madness (2013) certainly received negative reviews, none of the reviewers exposed Greenfeld's deceptive use of sources. This article also raises the question whether Greenfeld violated the Code of Ethics in her transdisciplinary excursions. Greenfeld systematically ignores literature of specialists and it seems clear that she did not take the required reasonable steps to ensure competence in disciplines she enters as a layperson. Obviously falling well short of academic standards, her book was nonetheless published by Harvard University Press and lavishly praised in reviews by Thomas Cushman and Karen A. Cerulo. They are all invited to respond. A broader debate on the practice of reviewing seems welcome.
  • One-child Ideation in India
    India has seen a truly remarkable transition towards lower fertility over recent decades. The country is on course to reach replacement level fertility by 2020. Yet, there is a large degree of variation between states. In some areas, for example, total fertility rates are as low as 1.6 or 1.7. Profound changes in fertility preferences have accompanied this fertility transition. In particular, there has been a strong shift towards a two-child norm. In recent years, however, there has been developing evidence of a growing ideation towards having just one-child. This phenomenon has been associated with the rise of the Indian middle class and has been the subject of some attention in both academic and popular circles. Using evidence from the National Family Health Survey, this chapter explores this phenomenon in the Indian context. In doing so, we explore the possible implications both for the future direction of fertility transition in India, as well as for the family as an institution.
  • Metaphorical Violence in Political Discourse
    Metaphor is more than a literary device. It is a fundamental cognitive ability that drives the capacity to reason about state and actions in the world. Metaphor—which involves under- standing of abstract concepts in terms of more basic ones—permeates political discourse. Its ubiquity is evident in the frequent use of statements such as “It’s time to drain the swamp”, “Obama sprinted toward victory on Election Day”, and “Trump attacks Jeff Sessions over Russian probe methods”. No one is releasing water, running, or causing physical harm. How is metaphor- ical violence expressed, for instance, expressions with words such as “attack”, “slaughter”, and “hit”, and how does it influence political thought and communication? Here, we describe novel time-resolved observations and explanatory dynamical models of the use of metaphorical violence language in political discourse on U.S. cable television news in the period leading up to the two most recent presidential elections. Our results quantify the details and dynamics of the use of these metaphors, revealing how cable news shows act as reporters, promoters, expectation-setters, and ideological agents in different degrees in response to differing cultural situations. Our work has implications for shaping political discourse and influencing political attitudes.
  • Evolutionary systems theory: concepts and schools in international relations
    As an interdisciplinary approach, evolutionary systems theory borrows from fields such as statistical physics, evolutionary biology as well as economics and others to build on their insights from studies of environments — as systems — and the behavior of actors within those environments — their agency. It provides a bridge between existing and divergent but related strings of research of particular systemic elements as a unifying macro-theory of our social and physical world, fusing multiple approaches into a common model. The unifying key is the focus on the behavior of agents (e.g., individuals; groups; cities; states; world systems) as it relates to the environment (both natural and social) in which these agents act and the feedback between behavior and environment. Evolutionary systems approaches can broadly be placed into two categories: (1) the biobehavioral and (2) the socialevolutionary approach to the study of international relations with the help of evolutionary theory. The point of evolutionary explanations is not to make the case that humans are incapable of making their own choices —far from it, learning and selection are critical elements of human agency in evolutionary models. Rather, evolutionary systems theory also includes in its models the structural capacity to make those choices, which derives from and depends on previous choices made, a process that is also bound by our biological evolution or alternatively by our cognitive limitations and available selection mechanisms, regardless of the relative complexity of human learning capacity.
  • The Legacy of King Cotton: Agricultural Patterns and the Quality of Structural Change
    Agricultural patterns could have diverse impact on long-run economic development. In the context of the US South, this paper examines the legacy of cotton on economic development focusing on a novel channel of structural change. Exploiting variation in cotton production along with agro-climatic conditions, I show that the legacy of cotton has impeded local economic development exclusively as of the mid-twentieth century. The structural break is found to be a consequence of cotton mechanization. Evidence from exogenous variation in the boll weevil infestation shows that cotton farming was strongly dependent on tenant farmers with little human capital. Following cotton mechanization, cotton tenants were largely displaced and absorbed by the manufacturing sector. I then find that the inflow of cotton tenants has reduced labor productivity in the manufacturing sector. Beyond the composition effect, the negative impact on manufacturing productivity has persisted in the long-run through demand-side. Employing an index of state-level policy environment, I exploit within-state variation to show that the legacy of cotton has induced unskill-biased technical change in manufacturing.
  • The Costs of Exclusionary Practices in Masculinities Studies
    NOT A FORMAL ABSTRACT IN THE FORTHCOMING PAPER: This article claims that masculinities studies has systematically started to center the work of a very small and specific group of white men and that this process of collective centering works as an effective "exclusionary practice" that hinders both the scholarly and political potential of this field.
  • Review of Cut Adrift: Families in Insecure Times
    The questions Marianne Cooper asks are relevant beyond the context of the Great Recession – the event that headlines her analysis – but the crisis of the moment underscores their importance: How do people (women, men, families) increasingly charged with managing their own economic security experience and handle that task, emotionally? And further, what do the social class differences in that process tell us about life in an era of ballooning economic inequality?
  • How Conservatism Makes Peace with Trump
    This essay is a review of Suicide of the West: How the Rebirth of Tribalism, Populism, Nationalism, and Identity Politics is Destroying American Democracy, by Jonah Goldberg (Crown Forum, 2018), with a few data explorations along the way. I read the book to see what I could learn about contemporary conservative thinking, especially anti-Trump conservatism. Opposing Trump and the movement he leads is suddenly the most pressing progressive issue of our time, and it’s important not to be too narrow in mobilizing that opposition. Unfortunately, I found the book to be an extended screed against leftism with but a few pages of anti-Trump material grafted in here and there, which ultimately amounts to blaming leftism and immigration for Trump. And that might sum up the state of the anemic conservative movement. Goldberg’s own weak-kneed position on Trump is not resolved until page 316, when he finally concludes, “As much as I hold Trump in contempt, I am still compelled to admit that, if my vote would have decided the election, I probably would have voted for him” (316). In the end, Goldberg has charted a path toward a détente between his movement and Trump’s.
  • Universal Economic Plan Based Law Constitutions of Kingdom and Nations
    In this work, touched on some social issues whatever the result, and a raising awareness was aimed by some new technological upgrades for the vital infrastructures of states, social order and economic plans. The main aim is one world order which has no king and accepts nations as local governance as a requirement of hierarchical order. It is completely based on economic benefits of all nations as there is no alternative to establish a healthy economic order as economic management is directly related with laws. As the important is a law exists or not, or is just or not for justice, also it encourages to develop organic laws in state institutions as it recognizes any state institution as autonomous. No state has this constitution. This work is only an offer. This building is a building which is actually dependent of economy, counts states of the world as local governances as a requirement of one world order; does not stipulate working and military service; promises that no charge for houses, energy, education, judgment, security, health care, public transport, marriage; promises removing armies limited manner, removing nuclear weapons and establishing in space but the special conditions.
  • Crafting Culture: ‘Tradition,’ Art, and Music in Disney's “It's A Small World”
  • When Democracy Disappears: Emergency Management in Benton Harbor (accepted at Du Bois Review)
    In this case study, I look at Benton Harbor, Michigan’s tenure under a state-appointed “emergency manager,” with extensive local powers replacing all local elected government, and a single imperative to balance the city’s budget. The law, ostensibly race-neutral, wound up targeting almost all of Michigan’s cities with significant black population. The law ultimately disenfranchised half the state’s black population but only two percent of whites, as well as the majority of local black officials. This law invalidates a basic civil right and prerequisite for urban political theory: electoral democracy. Who holds power in the urban regime when the state takes over? Drawing on 44 interviews, observations and archival research, I argue that a white urban regime governs without elected representation in this majority-black city. Emergency management, which shut out black officials, allowed this white urban regime to consolidate its influence, showing the deeper disenfranchisement inherent to this law. While posited as restoring “order” to troubled management, the process of emergency management in fact prolongs political crisis. But the ideological framing of emergency management as “neutral,” and black politics as “corrupt” or “self-interested,” provides the logic to blame black governance for structural disinvestment and white-led extraction. (Note: this is the version that was accepted pre-copyediting. It will be updated once the final version comes out in Du Bois Review later this year. There are typos.)
  • The Trouble with Human Capital Theory
    Human capital theory is the dominant approach for understanding personal income distribution. According to this theory, individual income is the result of ‘human capital’. The idea is that human capital makes people more productive, which leads to higher income. But is this really the case? This paper takes a critical look at human capital theory and its explanation of personal income distribution. I find that human capital theory’s claims are dubious at best. In most cases, the theory is either not supported by evidence, is so vague that it is untestable, or is based on circular reasoning. In short, human capital theory is a barrier to the scientific study of income distribution.
  • Linguistic Markers of Status in Food Culture: Bourdieu’s Distinction in a Menu Corpus
    Food is a core element of culture, whose link with identity and socio-economic class has made it an important area of cultural research. In his ground-breaking study, Pierre Bourdieu noted that "oppositions similar in structure to those found in cultural practices also appear in eating habits." His work established deep associations linking food culture, and taste more generally, with social class and other aspects of identity, demonstrating the economic and social determinants of taste and their role in representing distinctions, differences between groups.
  • Linguistic Markers of Status in Food Culture: Bourdieu’s Distinction in a Menu Corpus
  • A Bayesian Hierarchical Logistic Regression Model of Multiple Informant Family Health Histories
    Family health history (FHH) inherently involves collecting proxy reports of health statuses of related family members. Traditionally, such information has been collected from a single informant. More recently, research has suggested that a multiple in- formant approach to collecting FHH results in improved individual risk assessments. Likewise, recent work has emphasized the importance of incorporating health-related behaviors into FHH based risk calculations. Integrating both multiple accounts of FHH with behavioral information on family members represents a significant methodological challenge as such FHH data is hierarchical in nature and arises from potentially error-prone processes. In this paper, we introduce a statistical model that addresses that challenges using informative priors for background variation in disease prevalence and the effect of other, potentially correlated, variables jointly with handling the hierarchical structure nesting multiple FHH accounts into families. Our empirical example is drawn from previously published data on families with a history of diabetes. The results of the model assessment suggest that simply accounting for the structured na- ture of multiple informant FHH data improves classification accuracy over the baseline and that incorporating family member health-related behavioral information into the model is preferred over alternative specifications
  • Getting to the Heart of Masculinity Stressors: Masculinity Threats Induce Pronounced Vagal Withdrawal During a Speaking Task
    AbstractBackgroundPrevious work has found that traditional masculinity ideals and behaviors play a crucial role in higher rates of morbidity and mortality for men. Some studies also suggest that threatening men’s masculinity can be stressful. Over time, this stress can weigh on men’s cardiovascular and metabolic systems, which may contribute to men’s higher rates of cardiometabolic health issues.PurposeThe purpose of this study is to explore how masculinity threats affect men’s heart rate and heart rate variability reactivity (i.e., vagal withdrawal) to masculinity feedback on a social speaking task.MethodsTwo hundred and eighty-five undergraduate males were randomly assigned to one of six conditions during a laboratory-based speech task. They received one of two feedback types (masculinity or control) and one of three feedback levels (low, high, or dropping) in order to assess whether masculinity threats influence heart rate reactivity and vagal withdrawal patterns during the speech task.ResultsMen who receive low masculinity feedback during the speech task experienced more pronounced vagal withdrawal relative to those who received the control.ConclusionMasculinity threats can induce vagal withdrawal that may accumulate over the life course to contribute to men’s relatively worse cardiometabolic health.
  • Studying crime and place with the Crime Open Database
    The study of spatial and temporal crime patterns is important for both academic understanding of crime-generating processes and for policies aimed at reducing crime. However, studying crime and place is often made more difficult by restrictions on access to appropriate crime data. This means understanding of many spatio-temporal crime patterns are limited to data from a single geographic setting, and there are few attempts at replication. This article introduces the Crime Open Database (CODE), a database of 16 million offenses from 10 of the largest United States cities over 11 years and more than 60 offense types. Open crime data were obtained from each city, having been published in multiple incompatible formats. The data were processed to harmonize geographic co-ordinates, dates and times, offense categories and location types, as well as adding census and other geographic identifiers. The resulting database allows the wider study of spatio-temporal patterns of crime across multiple US cities, allowing greater understanding of variations in the relationships between crime and place across different settings, as well as facilitating replication of research.
  • A Nationalist Backlash to International Refugee Law: Evidence from a Survey Experiment in Turkey
    How do international laws affect citizens’ willingness to accept refugees? In full and partial democracies, citizens’ attitudes can influence national policy on accepting refugees. A growing literature suggests international institutions can influence citizens’ attitudes on foreign policy issues, but those studies are almost entirely confined to domestic human rights and U.S.-based respondents; none consider refugee policy. Using data from a survey experiment administered in September 2017 via face-to-face interviews with 1335 Turkish citizens, we investigate how international norms affect citizens’ willingness to accept refugees. Our findings are surprising: reminding people about the government’s responsibility under the Refugee Convention to accept refugees triggers a backfire effect, decreasing support for accepting them. This effect appears driven by respondents who support the nationalist-populist incumbent party and by lower-educated respondents. We therefore provide evidence that international refugee law – and perhaps international institutions generally – can trigger a political backlash, undermining the very policies that they promote.
  • From Economism to the Alt-Right: Exploring the Neoliberal Roots of the Far Right Resurgence
    In August of 2017 the town of Charlottesville, Virginia saw hundreds of Right Wing Extremist protesters descended on the streets in one of the largest mobilisations of the far right seen in recent US history. While the Alt Right has been around in some form since 2008, over the last year we have seen it grow from a small and insignificant white nationalist movement to a broad and seemingly growing street movement, able to unite and mobilise hundreds of far right protesters, both old and new to the movement.The question is, how has this happened? How have the Alt Right been able to go from insignificance to such a potent movement so quickly? In this paper I use a combination of Bourdieu’s field theory, and Hacking’s dynamic nominalism, to work towards a way of answering that question. Beginning with the neoliberal turn of the late 20th Century, I argue that the associated establishment of economic power above all else has opened the door for those with significant economic capital to transfer that into political power; that in doing so a crisis of political legitimacy has been created that throws the established order of political capital into question, and opens for door for new, more extreme, forms to gain power; and that the creation and legitimation of the Alt Right by media and political experts has created a new kind of political actor, that gives space on the far right for those who would not otherwise have been engaged.
  • Teaching your first political science course
    This working paper discusses the process of designing your first political science course. It covers the preparation of a diverse syllabus, developing learning objectives, structuring lectures and class activities, designing assignments, and setting up an efficient mode of course communication between the instructor and students.
  • Birds of a Feather Succeed Together? Racial Residential Segregation and Educational Attainment
    Is racial residential segregation or integration a stronger predictor of educational attainment? Does the racialized direction of this relationship matter? Drawing from Wilson’s (1987) social isolation theory and Massey and Denton’s (1993) theory of racial segregation and poor neighborhood formation, I propose that 1) greater residential racial homogeneity and 2) greater white residential segregation will increase average educational attainment at the county level. I analyze data from the 2016 County Health Rankings and Roadmaps along with the 5-year 2011-2015 American Community Survey, both of which yield a total population size of 3,141 counties. The study reveals that the impact of residential segregation on academic achievement is indeed racialized: white residential segregation most strongly affects county percent high school graduation. General residential segregation, however, is positively and significantly related to high school and graduate/PhD degree level completion. Nevertheless, median household income and county rurality are consistently the strongest predictors of high school and graduate/PhD completion across four regression models. While these results confirm both hypotheses, they highlight the strength of alternative explanations for educational gaps in the United States—gaps that may be more directly tied to social capital and rurality. The findings suggest that policies intending to alleviate disparities in educational attainment cannot center segregation alone, they must also offer a broader solution to social isolation and resource deprivation patterns by targeting counties with lower median household incomes and greater rurality.
  • Party Identification, the Policy Space, and Business Donations to Political Parties
    Political finance scholars have paid little attention to the partisan preferences of business donors. This was because business donors were overwhelmingly concerned with the left-right dimension and enjoyed stable relationships with centre-right parties. These parties are increasingly tempted by nationalist positions on a globalisation dimension. This new ideological flux provides an opportunity to measure the extent to which donors are party identifiers or react to changes in the policy space. Dramatic shifts in party policy on both dimensions and a relatively transparent political finance regime make the UK a particularly apposite case to study this question. I analyse 19,000 donations to the Conservative Party and show that business donors reacted strongly to recent shifts on both the left-right and globalisation dimensions. Thus, centre-right parties cannot rely on party identification and their left-right position to maintain business funding. Economic nationalism costs centre-right parties money.
  • Prenatal Exposure to an Acute Stressor and Children’s Cognitive Outcomes
    Exposure to environmental stressors is highly prevalent and unequally distributed along socioeconomic lines and may have enduring negative consequences, even when experienced before birth. Yet, estimating the consequences of prenatal stress on children’s outcomes is complicated by the issue of confounding (i.e., unobserved factors correlated with stress exposure and with children’s outcomes). I combine a natural experiment—a strong earthquake in Chile—with a panel survey to capture the effect of prenatal exposure on acute stress and children’s cognitive ability. I find that stress exposure in early pregnancy has no effect on children’s cognition among middle-class families, but it has a strong negative influence among poor families. I then examine possible pathways accounting for the socioeconomic stratification in the effect of stress, including differential exposure across socioeconomic status, differential sensitivity, and parental responses. Findings suggest that the interaction between prenatal exposures and socioeconomic advantage provides a powerful mechanism for the intergenerational transmission of disadvantage.
  • Genre Theory and Historicism
    Genre is a word whose time has come — and gone — and might now, perhaps, be coming back again. Debates about particular literary kinds have been common in literary criticism since Aristotle's Poetics, but they acquired a new intensity and reflexivity in the third quarter of the twentieth century, as structuralists and post-structuralists struggled to redefine the concept of genre itself. From Northrop Frye's Anatomy of Criticism (1957) through Jacques Derrida's "Law of Genre" (1980), genre theory gave scholars a way to connect literary works to durable cultural patterns — or challenge the possibility of that connection.
  • Defining Gendered Oppression in U.S. Newspapers: The Strategic Value of “Female Genital Mutilation”
    According to the logic of the gendered modernity/tradition binary, women in traditional societies are oppressed and women in modern societies liberated. While the binary valorizes modern women, it potentially erases gendered oppression in the West and undermines feminist movements on behalf of Western women. Using U.S. newspaper text, I ask whether female genital cutting (FGC) is used to define women in modern societies as liberated. I find that speakers use FGC to both uphold and challenge the gendered modernity/tradition binary. Speakers use FGC to denigrate non-Western cultures and trivialize the oppressions that U.S. women typically encounter, but also to make feminist arguments on behalf of women everywhere. I argue that in addition to examining how culturally imperialist logics are reproduced, theorists interested in feminist postcolonialism should turn to the distribution of such logics, emphasizing the who, where, when, and how of reinscription of and resistance to such narratives.
  • Genre Theory and Historicism
  • The Transformation of Gender in English-Language Fiction
    This essay explores the changing significance of gender in fiction, asking especially whether its prominence in characterization has varied from the end of the eighteenth century to the beginning of the twenty-first. We have reached two conclusions, which may seem in tension with each other. The first is that gender divisions between characters have become less sharply marked over the last 170 years. In the middle of the nineteenth century, very different language is used to describe fictional men and women. But that difference weakens steadily as we move forward to the present; the actions and attributes of characters are less clearly sorted into gender categories. On the other hand, we haven't found the same progressive story in the history of authorship. In fact, there is an eye-opening, under-discussed decline in the proportion of fiction actually written by women, which drops by half (from roughly 50% of titles to roughly 25%) as we move from 1850 to 1950. The number of characters who are women or girls also drops. We are confronted with a paradoxical pattern. While gender roles were becoming more flexible, the space actually allotted to (real, and fictional) women on the shelves of libraries was contracting sharply. We explore the evidence for this paradox and suggest a few explanations.
  • How The Legacy of Slavery Has Survived: A Mechanism through Labor Market Institutions and Human Capital
    In spite of sizable qualitative literature on the long-run legacy of slavery, its robust evidence and convincing mechanism have not been established. This research evaluates the legacy of slavery on long-run development and its detailed mechanism which consists of two key factors, labor market institutions and human capital structure. Using county-level data of the U.S. South and exploiting exogenous variation in ecological conditions, I show that slavery has had persistent negative impact on economic development through the human capital structure. To explain the link between slavery and human capital, I find from complete count census data in 1940 that the legacy of slavery impeded integration of black workers into the competitive labor market which accordingly reduced the incentives of blacks to invest in human capital. In addition, evidence from the progressive Era along the border counties shows that the legacy of slavery on the labor market was operated through selective enforcement of labor market regulations. Lastly, I present the roles of racial wage discrimination and selective migration which reinforced persistence of the mechanism.
  • Components Topology of Oracle Bones Characters
    Oracle bones characters have many variations. As they are still conceivable, there must have some intrinsic essence inside. Disputes of previous studied components exist, while some interpretation are too far -fetched. We introduce some concepts from fluid dynamics and graph theories to interpret the meaning of these components.
  • House prices and property tax revenues during the boom and bust: Evidence from small-area estimates
  • Catastrophic Gradualism: to Thee I write
    The second I saw the title: Catastrophic Gradualism, I thought to myself, this can’t possibly be about the effect laziness and general apathy has on society, could it? Did Orwell and the like pick up on this disease more than fifty odd years ago? If it was an issue then, one can only imagine its impact of such a thing in our modern apaced society. How appropriate is the word catastrophic?! It validates a feeling that the general populace wont so much as lift an eyebrow until either the cause impacts one in a manner dire, provides arbitrage or is thrust upon them by authority. This type of behavior resonates with the concept of the path of least resistance. Why would anyone do more than the absolute required to get from a to b? I am surely not defending this behavior, I am only trying to understand and rationalize it. Surely society is divided with those willing effort for change and those not so. Those seeking change are surely fueled by ambition applying to almost anything: technology, science and politics or even with general work related matters. In my general experience, one can observe the same overall effects of Gradualism on society by observing the statistical sample that is the workplace.
  • The Political Economy of Data Production
    Abstract: Cross-national macroeconomic statistics are nearly ubiquitous in international relations and comparative politics research. While we know that these data can only be measured with error, our reliance on them implies a belief that those errors are random, or, at a minimum, unrelated to the political phenomena we use them to understand. But that is implausible. Measuring the economy is largely a state function, and the political-economic backdrop against which it occurs inherently shapes it. The implicit belief that the politics of data production are inconsequential to political science research should be scrutinized. We examine this belief using a newly available dataset of ex post revisions to World Development Indicators data, with a particular focus on GDP growth statistics. We find that revisions to these data reveal a form of measurement error that is both consequential—simple political economy relationships vary substantially depending on which version of the data is used—and systematic. We focus particularly on the IMF’s role in the political economy of data production, but our analysis reveals other political factors that inform the scale and direction of ex post revisions.
  • Why do People Come? The Factors Influencing Public Library Visits
    Current study investigates what variables, including expenditures, services, and collections, can predict the total annual pub-lic library visits (VISITS) in the United States. The data source was the 2015 Public Library Service data and reports, and a multiple regression model was used to analyze the data in the R programming language. Results indicated that the best variables for predicating VISITS were a library’s total operating expenditures, usage of public Internet-enabled computers per year, audio-physical units, total children programs, and video-physical units. The best subset model for predicting VISITS included the total number of public libraries, total operating expenditures, print materials, audio-physical units, total children programs, total young programs, and the usage of public Internet-enabled computers per year.
  • Do low-brow tastes demonstrate stronger categorical differentiation? An analysis of book choices by Russian public library system users
    In his paper establishing the foundations of omnivorousness theory, Richard Peterson suggested that the system of tastes is organized as a pyramid “with one elite taste at the top and more and more alternative forms at about the same level as one moves down the pyramid toward its base”, with tastes at the bottom “mark[ing] the status boundaries between taste groups defined by age, gender, race, region, religion, lifestyle” (1992). High-status individuals are likely to consume a few genres at all levels of the taste pyramid, while low-status ones tend to patronise only one genre situated at the bottom. While one of the predictions following from this model —concerning the omnivorounsness of privileged groups—has been tested in numerous studies, the thesis of stronger structural embeddedness of low-brow tastes has been researched much less extensively. If Peterson is right, we would find that the consumption of high-brow objects strongly correlates with class characteristics, such as education, although consumption of low- and middle-brow does not; on the contrary, the consumption of low-brow objects correlates with belonging to gender, age, ethnic, or other groupings, where the consumption of high-brow objects does not. In this paper, we use a dataset from a Saint Petersburg public library system to analyze 1 900 000 book choices of above 170 000 readers to find out whether these predictions hold. We find that there is indeed a strong negative correlation between the attractiveness of an author for predominantly educated readers and the gender and age specificity of his/her audience. In the second part of the article we discuss two possible theoretical explanation of this finding: (a) the opposition between the high-grid culture of unprivileged groups and the low-grid culture of elites, as described in Mary Douglas’ “cultural theory”, and (b) the opposition between relaxational and self-cultivating usages of culture.
  • ‘The trunks of trees washed up by the sea’: Of Uprootedness and Shipwreck in V. S. Naipaul’s The Mimic Men
    This paper investigates the notion of uprootnedness and cultural shipwreck in the Trinidadian novelist V. S. Naipaul’s novel The Mimic Men (1967). Although the novel’s fictional island may stand for Trinidad, this paper stresses the fact that, according to Naipaul, the disordered Isabella may well match the characteristics of other chaotic Third World nations. The narrator-protagonist symbolizes more of the disillusionment worthy of Naipaul’s other placeless characters like Salim in A Bend in the River and Mr. Biswas in A House for Mr Biswas. This means that Naipaul tries a writing of a (hi)story that adheres to his personal idiosyncrasies and beliefs, a narrative in which he exposes the abnormalities and pretences of a society in which nothing seems sure and lasting. As the title of the novel suggests, the pattern is that of mimicry; postcolonial countries, all together lacking a sense of creativity, duplicate and distort metropolitan models. Thus, this paper sheds light in the tunnel between the ‘us’ (Europeans) and the ‘them’ (Caribbean) arguing that for Naipaul the first stands for authenticity and reality while the second signifies mimicry and unreality.
  • Calculation as a Cultural Act: Incorporating Early Written Source and Early Modern Instruments into Mathematics Courses
    This project promotes interdisciplinarity and challenges the persistent notion of linear change in mathematics by describing an interdisciplinary Mathematics and History course “Calculating Innovation: Invention and Evolution of Mathematical Instruments and Problem-Solving Techniques.” This course utilizes primary sources and historical instruments to teach mathematical computation methods, while discussing the historical contexts in which they were developed and how they evolved through intracultural and cross-cultural interactions. By providing a discussion of the sources and methods that would be utilized to teach “Calculating Innovation” students about ongoing efforts to make performing calculations with large numbers simpler and more reliable, this project provides descriptions and demonstrations of how to use a counting board, logarithm tables, and a calculation device called “Napier’s Bones.” Throughout, there are suggestions for how techniques from “Calculating Innovation,” including utilizing primary source documents, historical instruments, historians’ methodologies, and problem- and project-based learning, could be incorporated into mathematics courses.
  • From the Trenches: A Global Survey of Anti-TIP NGOs and their Views of US Efforts
    Amid the academic and policy critiques of the United States’ 15-year push to eliminate human trafficking, the perspective of the nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) working with anti-trafficking advocacy and services has been largely ignored. This article presents the results of a global survey of nearly 500 anti-trafficking NGOs in working in 133 countries, and is the first NGO-focused survey of its kind. Based on the results of the survey, we provide an overview of the anti-trafficking NGO sector as a whole, detail the relationship between anti-trafficking NGOs and the US, and account for some of the variation in NGO opinions of US efforts. Notably, we find that NGOs are remarkably satisfied with US-led efforts—despite their acknowledged flaws—and that NGOs believe that American anti-TIP policies are important and, on balance, helpful. These results also provide a warning for the future of the United States’ anti-trafficking advocacy, suggesting that the US avoid politicizing its annual Trafficking in Persons Report.
  • Unscientific Visual Representations Used for the "Egg Aging" Campaign in 2010s Japan
    Japan has experienced floods of fake knowledge about human reproduction in recent times. Most of them are created by professionals in the fields of obstetrics, gynecology, and reproductive medicine and spread widely through a mass media campaign backed by academic associations. Such a knowledge has also been used by the government as scientific evidence to justify encouragement of pregnancy and childbirth for young women. “Egg aging” (卵子の老化) has been the key concept in the campaign. This concept is originally a term of biology for the degeneration of eggs (or female germ cells) owing to a long delay in the process of meiotic division. As it acquired popularity, the concept widened its connotation. “Egg aging” today is not limited to the degeneration of germ cells, but covers a wide range of fertility problems experienced by women of an advanced age. It now serves as a magic phrase to represent many aspects of latent biological mechanisms of declining fertility. In the course of the media campaign, fake knowledge about human reproduction has become popular in books, magazines, and websites giving an impression that it is based on scientific grounds. These are targeted at youths' perception of their body and thereby have an impact on their sexual behavior and family planning. We can regard this as a violation against reproductive rights because it disrupts the reproductive decision-making process with misinformation. It also damages public trust in the medical profession, which will eventually harm the social health system. This brochure, Unscientific Visual Representations Used for the Egg Aging Campaign in 2010s Japan, is a product of the research project “Unscientific knowledge and the egg aging panic” funded by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (KAKENHI #17K02069 for fiscal 2017-2019). This project is run by Tanaka Sigeto, an associate professor at Tohoku University, to explore the courses, contexts, and consequences of the egg aging campaign. According to a literature survey of both academic and popular writings, this brochure introduces some instances of visual representations used in the campaign and explains how they have been widespread in the Japanese society to affect governmental policies and public opinions.
  • Sponsorship Effects in Online Surveys
    Many academic surveys administered online include a banner along the top of the survey displaying the name or logo of the researcher's university. Our study aims to determine whether these banners influence survey respondents' answers, that is, whether they induce sponsorship effects. For this purpose, we field three different studies on Amazon's MTurk where we randomly assign the sponsoring institution. Our outcome measures include survey questions about social conservatism, religious practices, group affect, and political knowledge. We find that respondents provide similar answers and exhibit similar levels of effort regardless of the apparent sponsor.
  • The Great British Sorting Machine: Adolescents’ future in the balance of family, school and the neighborhood
    Research calls attention to the divergent school and labor market trajectories of Europe’s youth while, across the Atlantic, researchers describe the long-lasting consequences of poverty on adolescent development. In this paper we incorporate both processes to shed a new light on a classic concern in the sociology of stratification: how are adolescents’ aspirations, expectations, and school performance shaped by the combined socioeconomic contexts of family, school and neighborhood life? Theoretically, social contexts provide children with cultural resources that may foster their ambitions and bolster their academic performance. Reference group theory instead highlights how seemingly positive settings can depress educational performance as well as aspirations and expectations. We empirically test these competing claims, drawing on the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC) which describes the school and neighborhood trajectories of 7,934 British children followed from birth to adolescence. We find that, generally, childhood school and neighborhood deprivation is negatively associated with adolescents’ school performance, aspirations and expectations for their future, in line with the cultural resource perspective. However, there are important exceptions to this pattern which point to reference group processes for (1) children of highly-educated parents, whose academic performance especially suffers from growing up in a poor neighborhood, and (2) for children from low-educated parents, whose academic aspirations and expectations are unexpectedly high when they either went to an affluent school or lived in an affluent neighborhood—but not both. We conclude by discussing implications for theory, policy and future research.
  • Does religious bias shape access to public services? A large-scale audit experiment among street-level bureaucrats
    Despite growing descriptive evidence of discrimination against minority religious groups and atheists in the United States, little experimental work exists studying whether individuals face differential barriers to receiving public services depending on their religious affiliation. Here we report results from a large-scale audit study of street-level bureaucrats in the American public school system. We emailed the principals of more than 45,000 public schools and asked for a meeting, randomly assigning the religious affiliation/non-affiliation of the family. To get at potential mechanisms, we also randomly assigned belief intensity. We find evidence of substantial discrimination against Muslims and atheists. These individuals are substantially less likely to receive a response, with discrimination growing when they signal that their beliefs are more intense. Protestants and Catholics face no discrimination unless they signal that their religious beliefs are intense. Our ?findings suggest that minority religious groups and atheists face important barriers to equal representation in the public arena.
  • Cults of personality, preference falsification, and the dictator's dilemma
    We provide a novel rational explanation for why cults of personality exist: they solve the dictator's adverse selection problem in assigning subordinates to roles within the regime. Participation in a cult of personality is psychologically costly whenever it involves preference falsification, with the costs varying across individuals. Importantly, low psychological costs of preference falsification are correlated with traits the dictator values, such as unscrupulousness and ruthlessness, which we collectively term disposition-based competence. Under a wide variety of circumstances, this correlation makes participation in cults of personality informative from the dictator's point of view, allowing him to hire loyal and competent subordinates for the most important regime positions. In contrast to earlier formal work, our model implies that dictators can use cults of personality to avoid the loyalty-competence trade-off when promoting subordinates.
  • It’s Not Only What you Say, It’s Also How You Say It: The Strategic Use of Campaign Sentiment
    What explains the type of electoral campaign run by political parties? We provide a new perspective on campaigns by focusing on the strategic use of emotive language. We argue that the level of positive sentiment parties adopt in their campaigns depends on their incumbency status, their policy position, and objective economic conditions. We test these claims with a novel dataset that captures the emotive language used in over 400 party manifestos across eight European countries. As predicted, we find that incumbent parties, particularly incumbent prime ministerial parties, use more positive sentiment than opposition parties. We find that ideologically moderate parties employ higher levels of positive sentiment than extremist parties. And we find that all parties exhibit lower levels of positive sentiment when the economy is performing poorly but that this negative effect is weaker for incumbents. Our analysis has important implications for research on campaign strategies and retrospective economic voting.
  • First Class Rail in Switzerland: The effect of a two-tier ticket structure on energy use
    This paper explores whether SBB can spare energy by renouncing its first class. SBB currently offers two classes on intercity trains. A first-class ticket is twice the price of the second-class ticket for the same travel. The first-class passenger cars have a lower number of seats and potentially different occupancy. Through different scenarios, we will analyse how this difference in price and seat density between the first and second classes can affect the energy consumption by people transported on the intercity line between Zurich and Geneva.
  • International cooperation networks of the BRICS bloc
    Since the BRICS Declaration in Cape Town in 2013, its five member countries have committed to cooperation programs in science, technology and innovation (STI), based on the five strategic thematic areas assigned to each signatory: climate change and mitigation of catastrophes (Brazil); water resources and pollution treatment (Russia); geospatial technology and its applications (India); new and renewable energy, and energy efficiency (China); and astronomy (South Africa). Five years after the Declaration and almost a decade after the First BRICS Summit, the evaluation of the strengthening of international cooperation among countries remains a challenge, due to their low presence in the large index databases commonly used for the collection of scientific data, such as Web of Science and Scopus. The proposal of this research is to carry out a study on international cooperation among the countries in the last five years through the Dimensions platform, based on the incidence of international co-authoring and co-financing of research agencies from the five countries, seeking to highlight the following points: the networks that consolidate themselves from the international cooperation among the BRICS countries, areas emerging in research with incidences of co-authorship, and how the research networks have been developed around the five strategic areas defined in the BRICS Cape Town Declaration. It aims to evaluate how the international cooperation of the BRICS bloc in strategic thematic areas has been growing, pointing to possible areas of strengthening of international partnerships that can be deployed through this study.
  • Special quantitative methods for orienteering training in areas without orienteering map
    The objective of this study was to deal with the training problem of orienteering in the areas that suitable for orienteering but lack orienteering map since current training methods do not quantify the level of orienteering athletes. This study proposes to use the decomposition method to divide the problem of foot-orienteering into sub-parts and use the special quantitative methods to solve specific sub-problems. Experiments results show that the proficiency of the participants’ sub-skills is increasing. All participants took part in the Orienteering Competition of the National Student, and the team performance increased by nearly 13% and the proportion of the normal athletes who gain the ranking was increased from 0% to 60%. The results of this study demonstrate that applying the decomposition method and the above training methods are effective and reasonable, it also offers a useful solution for coaches to operate training and quantify easily.
  • Ermenistan'da Yerel Yönetimler ve Bölgesel Politikalar
    English Abstract: In this paper, local governments and regional policies of the Republic of Armenia are examined. First, the development of local governance in Armenia and the role and place of local governments in the governance structure of this country have been analyzed. In the paper, Armenia’s local government system in the context of ECLSG and the correspondence of Armenia’s local governance legislation to the principles and clauses of this charter are analyzed. In line with this objective, the Constitution of the Republic of Armenia, its municipal legislation and other statutes have been analyzed, and the reflection of the ECLSG clauses ratified by Armenia in these statutes is examined. In addition, the regional policies and regulations aiming at the elimination of Armenia’s inter-regional differences in terms of development and their results are examined. Turkish Abstract: Makalede Ermenistan’ın yerel yönetimler ve bölgesel politikaları incelenmektedir. İlk önce Ermenistan’da yerel yönetimlerin gelişimi ve ülkenin idari yapılanmasında yerel yönetimlerin rolü ve yeri incelenmiştir. Makalede Ermenistan’ın yerel yönetimler sistemi, Avrupa Yerel Yönetimler Özerklik Şartı (AYYÖS) bağlamında ve yerel yönetimler mevzuatının bu şartın ilkelerine ve maddelerine uyum sağlayıp sağlamaması açısından incelenmektedir. Bu amaç doğrultusunda Ermenistan anayasası, belediye mevzuatı ve diğer yasalar incelenmiş ve onlarda Ermenistan tarafından onaylanmış olan AYYÖŞ’ün maddeleri ne derecede yansıtıldığı incelenmiştir. Ayrıca, sosyo-ekonomik gelişmişlik açısından önemli bölgelerarası dengesizliklere sahip olan Ermenistan’da, bu dengesizlikleri ortadan kaldırmak ve azaltmak için ülkenin geliştirdiği politikalar ve düzenlemeler ve onların sonuçları incelenmektedir.
  • ‘In reference to HIV, what does “undetectable” mean to you?’: Results of a small survey at an HIV testing site in San Francisco
    Objectives: ‘Undetectable’, a term describing HIV viral load at the level of non-transmissibility, appears to be used as a stigma-reducing term on dating apps and is predictive of condomless sex. Anecdotal evidence about the meaning of the term suggests that a mix of both accurate data and misinformation can abound. We sought to uncover what range of meanings the term ‘undetectable’ holds for a cohort of HIV testers at a free HIV testing facility along mid-Market St, San Francisco. Design: A four question survey with additional demographic questions was administered to 130 individuals at the testing site. The resulting answers were then coded as ‘informed’, ‘uninformed’, or ‘misinformed’ and correlated with demographic measures, including residential zip code of the respondent. Results: Residents in the Castro district were most likely to associate ‘undetectable’ status with medication adherence. The most misinformed zip code with respect to the meaning and implications of the term ‘undetectable’ was the Tenderloin, which corresponds to the San Francisco zip code with the lowest rates of HIV suppression. Compared to MSMs, heterosexuals were the most uninformed; while racially, Asians were the most misinformed and Blacks the least misinformed. Older men seem most cautious about using ‘undetectable’ as a risk-reduction strategy. Significance: The study highlights the degree to which certain neighbourhoods and demographics have assimilated the concept of ‘undetectable’ and how viral suppression is maintained, while pinpointing neighbourhoods for additional outreach to correct identified misinformation.
  • Other People's Houses: The Social Life of Mortgage Delinquency and Default
    While falling behind on a mortgage loan has significant personal consequences, we know little about whether the experience of delinquency or default influences the housing market behavior of other people in the defaulter’s social networks. In this paper, I ask how exposure to mortgage default through social networks affects perceptions of the housing market, judgements about the strategic default behavior of other households and expectations for homeownership. Although individuals purposively draw on information from their social networks to aid in their housing search, theories of social influence have yet to be applied to the negative experience of mortgage delinquency or default. Drawing on the National Housing Survey, I find that individuals exposed to mortgage delinquency through their social networks express more negative expectations for the housing market and hold a more permissive opinion about strategic default. Homeowners reporting network exposure to mortgage strain are more likely to prefer rental housing when they next move. These results are strongest when individuals are connected to someone who has fallen behind on a mortgage payment in the previous three months.
  • Evidence of Open Access of scientific publications in Google Scholar: a large-scale analysis
    This article uses Google Scholar (GS) as a source of data to analyse Open Access (OA) levels across all countries and fields of research. All articles and reviews with a DOI and published in 2009 or 2014 and covered by the three main citation indexes in the Web of Science (2,269,022 documents) were selected for study. The links to freely available versions of these documents displayed in GS were collected. To differentiate between more reliable (sustainable and legal) forms of access and less reliable ones, the data extracted from GS was combined with information available in DOAJ, CrossRef, OpenDOAR, and ROAR. This allowed us to distinguish the percentage of documents in our sample that are made OA by the publisher (23.1%, including Gold, Hybrid, Delayed, and Bronze OA) from those available as Green OA (17.6%), and those available from other sources (40.6%, mainly due to ResearchGate). The data shows an overall free availability of 54.6%, with important differences at the country and subject category levels. The data extracted from GS yielded very similar results to those found by other studies that analysed similar samples of documents, but employed different methods to find evidence of OA, thus suggesting a relative consistency among methods.
  • Distributional effects of transport policies on inequalities in access to opportunities in Rio de Janeiro
    The evaluation of the social impacts of transport policies is attracting growing attention in recent years. Yet, this literature is still predominately focused on developed countries. The goal of this research is to investigate how investments in public transport networks can reshape social and geographical inequalities in access to opportunities in a developing country, using the city of Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) as a case study. Recent mega-events, including the 2014 Football World Cup and the 2016 Olympic Games, have triggered substantial investment in the city’s transport system. More recently, though, bus services in Rio have been rationalized and reduced as a response to a fiscal crisis and a drop in passenger demand, giving a unique opportunity to look at the distributional effects this cycle of investment and disinvestment have had on peoples’ access to educational and employment opportunities. Based on a before-and-after comparison of Rio’s public transport network, this study uses a spatial regression model and cluster analysis to estimate how accessibility gains vary across different income groups and areas of the city between April 2014 and March 2017. The results show that recent cuts in service levels have offset the potential benefits of newly added public transport infrastructure in Rio. Average access by public transport to jobs and public high-schools decreased approximately 4% and 6% in the period, respectively. Nonetheless, wealthier areas had on average small but statistically significant higher gains in access to schools and job opportunities than poorer areas. These findings suggest that, contrary to the official discourses of transport legacy, recent transport policies in Rio have exacerbated rather than reduced socio-spatial inequalities in access to opportunities. These results also suggest that future research should consider how the modifiable areal unit problem (MAUP) can influence the equity assessment of transport projects.
  • Crowdsourced Quantification and Visualization of Urban Mobility Space Inequality
    Most cities are car-centric, allocating a privileged amount of urban space to cars at the expense of sustainable mobility like cycling. Simultaneously, privately owned vehicles are vastly underused, wasting valuable opportunities for accommodating more people in a livable urban environment by occupying spacious parking areas. Since a data-driven quantification and visualization of such urban mobility space inequality is lacking, here we explore how crowdsourced data can help to advance its understanding. In particular, we describe how the open-source online platform What the Street!? uses massive user-generated data from OpenStreetMap for the interactive exploration of city-wide mobility spaces. Using polygon packing and graph algorithms, the platform rearranges all parking and mobility spaces of cars, rails, and bicycles of a city to be directly comparable, making mobility space inequality accessible to a broad public. This crowdsourced method confirms a prevalent imbalance between modal share and space allocation in 23 cities worldwide, typically discriminating bicycles. Analyzing the guesses of the platform’s visitors about mobility space distributions, we find that this discrimination is consistently underestimated in the public opinion. Finally, we discuss a visualized scenario in which extensive parking areas are regained through fleets of shared, autonomous vehicles. We outline how such accessible visualization platforms can facilitate urban planners and policy makers to reclaim road and parking space for pushing forward sustainable transport solutions.
  • Information flows in the context of the EU Common Fisheries Policy reform - A network perspective
    The interest to uncover informal governance in political systems such as the European Union directs our view to networks of private and public actors - individuals or organisations - and their relations within or across policy fields. Independent of where they occur, the mechanisms of informal governance are expected to be largely defined by the overlapping formal and informal relational structures of these networks. This network theoretic approach yields the hypothesis that timely access to resources such as relevant information and the ability to influence key players within networks should depend on structural positions of actors; their role in the policy process should be constrained and enabled by the structural role they occupy in relation to their direct and indirect contacts. These assumptions will be tested for the case of the ongoing reform of the EU’s Common Fisheries Policy (CFP). The central question is whether the structure of the network of European, national and sub-national interest representatives involved in the CFP and the positions of these actors may be used to explain the flow of information during the policy process and the access of actors to these information when they are not yet available to a wider public. In this paper, methods to identify the respective actor population and to measure the relations between these actors as well as ways to uncover information flows will be discussed. First results of the empirical research on network structures in the CFP allowing some predictions on expected information flows will be presented.
  • Speculative Ethnography and First Contact with Possible Futures
    This panel paper engages with the figure of the "exoethnologist" in Carolyn Ives Gilman's "Twenty Planets" series of science fiction books to ask about the promise of speculative ethnography for imagining and working toward futures beyond the "fascist now." Keywords: ethnography, anthropology, speculative fiction, science fiction, futures, interstellar, outer space, methods Please cite as: Oman-Reagan, Michael P. 2017. “Speculative Ethnography and First Contact with Possible Futures.” Paper presented for “‘Realists’ of a Larger Reality: Anthropological intersections with Science Fiction.” 116th Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association; Washington, D.C. 2 December.
  • Achieving sustainability and transfer with short term learning experiences
    A 2017 article in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science (PNAS) reported that short-term, intensive “bootcamp” and other training opportunities (“train the user”) did not yield results that the training is intended to achieve. The results are predicted by cognitive psychological theories and findings from educational psychology. However, many “bootcamp” (short and intense preparation) type training opportunities – especially train the trainer - have some anecdotal evidence of their success and impact. Data and Software Carpentries (“The Carpentries”) is an organization that offers short/intensive training workshops around the world similar to some of those discussed in the 2017 paper. They train “users” of data and software, and they also train trainers of these users. In their response to this 2017 paper, The Carpentries acknowledge that one point raised in that paper, that training spaced over time is more successful than shorter/more intense training, cannot be circumvented. However, short and intense training is popular, and is sometimes all that is feasible; both their train the user and train the trainer sessions are short and intense. In their response, The Carpentries described their own strategies for achieving more positive outcomes for short and intense training than were described in this 2017 PNAS article. Two of these strategies are: “meet learners where they are” and “explicitly address motivation and self efficacy”. These strategies may not be functioning as well as they could be. To clarify what might be impeding these strategies, this white paper compares and contrasts features of training those who will train others (“train the trainer”) with training for “new users”. These types of programs are short and intense, but differ in fundamental ways. Understanding these differences can be leveraged to improve the outcomes of train the user training; recommendations for doing so is presented. The recommendations are embedded in descriptions of those features of training opportunities that can be leveraged purposefully to promote sustainable learning, even when training is short and intense. It is hoped that the model can support the success of the two Carpentries strategies to promote the achievement of Carpentries goals –and those of all who offer short/intensive training opportunities.
  • The Process of Revolutionary Protest: Development and Democracy in the Tunisian Revolution of 2010-2011
    Research on democratic revolution treats revolutionary protest, and revolutionary protest participation, as unitary events. This conceptualization is at odds with how `revolutionary' protest often unfolds---protest does not begin life as democratic or revolutionary but grows in a process of positive feedback, incorporating new constituencies and generating new demands. Using an original event catalogue of protest during the twenty-nine days of the Tunisian Revolution (n=631), alongside survey data, I show that the correlates of protest occurrence and participation can change significantly over the course of a revolution. The effect of economic development on protest occurrence reverses sign, while a commitment to democracy is a substantive predictor of protest participation only at the close of the revolution. Methodologically, the findings demonstrate the potential for faulty inference in the absence of proper disaggregation. Theoretically, they provide support for an understanding of revolution as process, and point to the endogenous emergence of democratic demands.
  • Leveraging online repositories: the case of excess deaths following Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico
    This working paper describes the process through which I created, developed and improved a data repository for data and code used to replicate our paper titled "Use of Death Counts from Vital Statistics to Calculate Excess Deaths in Puerto Rico Following Hurricane Maria". The repository can be accessed here: It also documents the opportunities and challenges of engaging in this endeavor.
  • The Sociology of the Symbolic Landscape
    The study of meaning is a cornerstone of sociology, but the context-dependence of meaning is also a challenge for sociologists engaged in comparative cultural sociological work. This article offers the Sociology of the Symbolic Landscape (SSL) as the theoretical solution to the challenge of studying meaning across contexts. SSL focuses on the relationship between symbolic categories within a context and the symbolic boundary of the context itself. Incorporating insights from Civil Sphere and Postcolonial Theories, SSL considers both meaning structures and the possibilities for action. Through application of SSL to our data on immigration and identity in Swedish schools, we demonstrate the analytical traction SSL provides to social scientific thinking on race in particular. SSL supports the development of a portable cultural-structural understanding of the position of the racially excluded as the “outsider within” – an understanding that can be applied even where race is a not an acknowledged category.
  • The enduring influence of institutions on universal health coverage: An empirical investigation of 62 former colonies
    In this paper, we argue that particular institutional arrangements partly explain the large and persistent differences in health systems and health outcomes observed in former colonies. Drawing on data from the World Health Organization for 62 countries, covering the period 2000–2014, we explore whether economic (risk of expropriation) and health (complete cause of death registries) institutions explain mortality rates and access to healthcare. To identify this relationship, we use settler mortality and the distance of the capital from the nearest major port – factors associated with institutional arrangements – to explain cross-national variation in health outcomes and the universality of health systems. We find that inclusive institutions arrangements – that protect and acknowledge the rights of citizens – are associated with better health outcomes (e.g. lower infant mortality and lower maternal mortality) as well as with better health systems (e.g. more skilled birth attendance and greater immunization). Inclusive institutions not only foster economic growth but improve health and well-being too.
  • National sex work policy and HIV prevalence among sex workers: an ecological regression analysis of 27 European countries
    Background Sex workers are disproportionately affected by HIV compared with the general population. Most studies of HIV risk among sex workers have focused on individual-level risk factors, with few studies assessing potential structural determinants of HIV risk. In this Article, we examine whether criminal laws around sex work are associated with HIV prevalence among female sex workers. Method We estimate cross-sectional, ecological regression models with data from 27 European countries on HIV prevalence among sex workers from the European Centre for Disease Control; sex-work legislation from the US State Department's Country Reports on Human Rights Practices and country-specific legal documents; the rule of law and gross-domestic product per capita, adjusted for purchasing power, from the World Bank; and the prevalence of injecting drug use among sex workers. Although data from two countries include male sex workers, the numbers are so small that the findings here essentially pertain to prevalence in female sex workers. Findings Countries that have legalised some aspects of sex work (n=17) have significantly lower HIV prevalence among sex workers than countries that criminalise all aspects of sex work (n=10; β=–2·09, 95% CI −0·80 to −3·37; p=0·003), even after controlling for the level of economic development (β=–1·86; p=0·038) and the proportion of sex workers who are injecting drug users (−1·93; p=0·026). We found that the relation between sex work policy and HIV among sex workers might be partly moderated by the effectiveness and fairness of enforcement, suggesting legalisation of some aspects of sex work could reduce HIV among sex workers to the greatest extent in countries where enforcement is fair and effective. Interpretation Our findings suggest that the legalisation of some aspects of sex work might help reduce HIV prevalence in this high-risk group, particularly in countries where the judiciary is effective and fair.
  • Gender violence, poverty and HIV infection risk among persons engaged in the sex industry: cross-national analysis of the political economy of sex markets in 30 European and Central Asian countries
    Objectives Persons engaged in the sex industry are at greater risk of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections than the general population. One major factor is exposure to higher levels of risky sexual activity. Expanding condom use is a critical prevention strategy, but this requires negotiation with those buying sex, which takes place in the context of cultural and economic constraints. Impoverished individuals who fear violence are more likely to forego condoms. Methods Here we tested the hypotheses that poverty and fear of violence are two structural drivers of HIV infection risk in the sex industry. Using data from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control and the World Bank for 30 countries, we evaluated poverty, measured using the average income per day per person in the bottom 40% of the income distribution, and gender violence, measured using homicide rates in women and the proportion of women exposed to violence in the last 12 months and/or since age 16 years. Results We found that HIV prevalence among those in the sex industry was higher in countries where there were greater female homicide rates (β = 0.86; P = 0.018) and there was some evidence that self‐reported exposure to violence was also associated with higher HIV prevalence (β = 1.37; P = 0.043). Conversely, HIV prevalence was lower in countries where average incomes among the poorest were greater (β = −1.05; P = 0.046). Conclusions Our results are consistent with the theory that reducing poverty and exposure to violence may help reduce HIV infection risk among persons engaged in the sex industry.
  • The Residential Segregation of Same-Sex Households from Different-Sex Households in Metropolitan USA, circa-2010
    Residential segregation is a major area of research in demography. By far the majority of the research has focused on the segregation of racial/ethnic minorities from the majority white group in metropolitan areas of the United States and several other countries. Few analyses have focused on the spatial segregation of sexual minorities from the majority. In this paper we analyze the residential segregation of gay male and lesbian households from heterosexual married and heterosexual cohabiting households. We use two dissimilarity measures of residential segregation and draw on data from the American Community Surveys for 2008 through 2012 to calculate segregation scores for the 100 MSAs with the largest gay male and lesbian populations in around the year 2010. We show that there is a sizable amount of homosexual-heterosexual residential segregation. We also show that gay males are more segregated from different-sex partners than are lesbians, and that levels of segregation vary positively across the cities with the size of the gay and lesbian populations.
  • Secular but not Superficial: An Overlooked Nonreligious/Nonspiritual Identity
    Since Durkheim’s characterization of the sacred and profane as “antagonistic rivals,” the strict dichotomy has been framed in such a way that “being religious” evokes images of a life filled with profound meaning and value, while “being secular” evokes images of a meaningless, self-centered, superficial life, often characterized by materialistic consumerism and the cold, heartless environment of corporate greed. Consequently, to identify as “neither religious nor spiritual” runs the risk of being stigmatized as superficial, untrustworthy, and immoral. Conflicts and confusions encountered in the process of negotiating a nonreligious/nonspiritual identity, caused by the ambiguous nature of religious language, were explored through qualitative interviews with 14 ex-ministers and 1 atheist minister—individuals for whom supernaturalist religion had formed the central core of identity, but who have deconverted and no longer hold supernatural beliefs. The cognitive linguistics approach of Frame Semantics was applied to the process of “oppositional identity work” to examine why certain identity labels are avoided or embraced due to considerations of the cognitive frames evoked by those labels. Through the constant comparative method of grounded theory, a host of useful theoretical concepts emerged from the data. Several impediments to the construction of a “secular but not superficial” identity were identified, and a framework of new theoretical concepts developed to make sense of them: sense disparity, frame disparity, identity misfire, foiled identity, sense conflation, and conflated frames. Several consequences arising from these impediments were explored: (1) consequences of sense conflation and conflated frames for the study of religion; (2) consequences of conflated frames for religious terminology; and (3) consequences of the negation of conflated frames for those who identify as not religious, not spiritual, or not Christian. Additionally, four types of oppositional identity work were identified and analyzed: (1) avoidance identity work, (2) dissonant identity work, (3) adaptive identity work, and (4) alternative identity work. Finally, the concept of conflated frames was applied to suggest a new interpretation of the classic Weberian disenchantment narrative.
  • Urban Spatial Order: Street Network Orientation, Configuration, and Entropy
    Spatial networks such as streets organize and constrain urban transportation. These networks may be planned according to clear organizing principles or they may evolve organically through accretion, but their configurations and orientations help define a city’s spatial logic and order. Measures of entropy reveal a city’s streets’ order and disorder. Past studies have explored individual cases of orientation and entropy, but little is known about broader patterns and trends worldwide. This study examines street network orientation, configuration, and entropy in 100 cities around the world using OpenStreetMap data and OSMnx. It measures the entropy of street bearings in weighted and unweighted network models, along with each city’s street length entropy, median street segment length (a linear proxy for grain), average circuity, average node degree (how many streets emanate from each intersection/dead-end), and the network’s proportions of four-way intersections and dead-ends. It also develops a new indicator of grid-order that quantifies how a city’s street network follows the ordering logic of a single orthogonal grid. It finds significant statistical relationships between a city’s griddedness/entropy and other indicators of spatial order, including street circuity and multiple measures of connectivity. These indicators, taken in concert, reveal the extent and nuance of the grid. On average, American cities are far more grid-like than cities in the rest of the world and exhibit far less orientation entropy and street circuity. These methods demonstrate automatic, scalable, reproducible tools to empirically measure and visualize city spatial order, illustrating urban transportation system patterns and configurations around the world.
  • Producer Exploration can Generate Categories without Audiences
    Category theory argues that markets function as an interface between producer candidates and audiences that evaluate those candidates. Audiences lump similar producer into categories in order to facilitate their search process, so that producers who do not fit into one specific category -- or who span multiple categories -- are penalized relative to their single category peers. I present an alternative model of the world in which producers in a market segregate into categories but without any reliance on an audience process: instead categorical boundaries reflect producers' best efforts to explore a complicated marketplace given their limited information about what audiences demand. Categories emerge as a cross-sectional consequence of a dynamic exploration process: At any given time, the world features a mix of high-performing producers within categorical clusters and low-performing producers outside or between them. But spanning positions are more likely to be occupied by entrepreneurial producers, and future categorical clusters emerge from their efforts to explore the terrain. As such any apparent category spanning discount is nothing more than the consequence of bad luck in the process of taking risk. I establish this result in a formal model and illustrate in simulations.
  • Gender violence, poverty and HIV infection risk among persons engaged in the sex industry: cross-national analysis of the political economy of sex markets in 30 European and Central Asian countries
  • National sex work policy and HIV prevalence among sex workers: an ecological regression analysis of 27 European countries
  • ‘Set up to fail’? How welfare conditionality undermines citizenship for vulnerable groups
    Underpinned by the assumption that unemployed persons are passive recipients of welfare, recent welfare reforms have increased benefit conditionality in the UK and introduced harsher penalties for failure to meet these conditions. Yet, conditionality may result in vulnerable groups disproportionately experiencing disentitlement from benefits, one of the rights of social citizenship, because they are, in some cases, less able to meet these conditions. Rising sanctions, then, may be the product of a disconnection between welfare conditionality and the capabilities of vulnerable claimants. To test this hypothesis, we evaluate whether sanctions are higher in areas where there are more vulnerable Jobseeker’s Allowance claimants, namely, lone parents, ethnic minorities, and those with disabilities. We find that sanction rates are higher in local authorities where more claimants are lone parents or live with a disability, and that this relationship strengthened since welfare reforms under the Conservative-led coalition. Failure to meet conditions of benefit receipt may disproportionately affect vulnerable groups.
  • A Multi-Scale Analysis of 27,000 Urban Street Networks: Every US City, Town, Urbanized Area, and Zillow Neighborhood
    OpenStreetMap offers a valuable source of worldwide geospatial data useful to urban researchers. This study uses the OSMnx software to automatically download and analyze 27,000 US street networks from OpenStreetMap at metropolitan, municipal, and neighborhood scales - namely, every US city and town, census urbanized area, and Zillow-defined neighborhood. It presents empirical findings on US urban form and street network characteristics, emphasizing measures relevant to graph theory, transportation, urban design, and morphology such as structure, connectedness, density, centrality, and resilience. In the past, street network data acquisition and processing have been challenging and ad hoc. This study illustrates the use of OSMnx and OpenStreetMap to consistently conduct street network analysis with extremely large sample sizes, with clearly defined network definitions and extents for reproducibility, and using nonplanar, directed graphs. These street networks and measures data have been shared in a public repository for other researchers to use.
  • A comment on randomization checks in economics experiments
    This note deals with baseline comparisons in randomized controlled trials in economics. Although widely spread in the literature, resorting to p-values is an inadequate procedure to assess whether randomization was successfully carried out. Instead, it is promising to use standardized differences. In addition, challenges to evaluate the quality of randomization appear if self-selection is systematically different across the com-pared treatments.
  • Mercantilist dualization: the introduction of the euro, redistribution of industry rents, and wage inequality in Germany, 1993-2008
    The current debate over distributional implications of the crisis-ridden Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) is heavily biased towards inter-national accounts. Little attention is paid to who wins and who loses out intra-nationally. I argue that in Germany the EMU has reinforced dualization, the insider-outsider cleavage in the country’s welfare state and production model. To scrutinize this argument, I analyze longitudinal linked employer-employee data (N>9.6 mio) and pursue a mechanistic three-step identification strategy: First, I illustrate how the introduction of the Euro distorted real interest and exchange rates within the Eurozone. Second, I demonstrate how these imbalances redistributed rents from the domestic sector, in particular from construction, to the core manufacturing industry. Third, I show how this shift in industry rents reverberated to the wage distribution and increased inequality. The study contributes to resolve the puzzle why wage inequality in Germany increased through a fanning out of the wage distribution whereas countries similarly exposed to technological change and globalization grew unequal through a polarization of their wage distribution.
  • The Relational Nature of Employment Dualization: Evidence from Subcontracting Establishments
    Scholars argue that the dual path to labor market flexibility protects the privileges of core workers at the expense of employees relegated to a peripheral employment sector. Yet whether core workers indeed benefit from workforce segmentation remains disputed. To scrutinize this question, I study how the wages of core workers with less than college education respond when their employer shifts employment out to subcontractors, using linked employer-employee panel data from Germany. Empirically, I find the effect of subcontracting on average to be either positive or neutral, but not negative. The presence and strength of the positive effect depends, first, on whether the type of subcontracting affords core workers with codetermination rights, second, on whether core workers are represented by a works council to exercise these rights, and, third, on whether these rights are exercised in a context that augments the bargaining position of core workers by rendering conflictual labor relations costly to the employer.
  • Envisioning the Graduate of the Future: In Review 2018
    Envisioning the Graduate of the Future (March 8 to April 5, 2018) was an experiment in rapidly producing a compelling, open, online learning experience. This massive open online course (MOOC) featured schools at various stages of developing their vision of a high school graduate. Over 2,000 educators and others from across the United States and 100+ countries registered for a collaborative and exploratory design process to develop a graduate profile, a shareable document that conveys what a community and/or school believes a high school graduate should know and be able to do.
  • Social influence on 5-year survival in a longitudinal chemotherapy ward co-presence network
    Chemotherapy is often administered in openly designed hospital wards, where the possibility of patient–patient social influence on health exists. Previous research found that social relationships influence cancer patient’s health; however, we have yet to understand social influence among patients receiving chemotherapy in the hospital. We investigate the influence of co-presence in a chemotherapy ward. We use data on 4,691 cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy in Oxfordshire, United Kingdom who average 59.8 years of age, and 44% are Male. We construct a network of patients where edges exist when patients are co-present in the ward, weighted by both patients’ time in the ward. Social influence is based on total weighted co-presence with focal patients’ immediate neighbors, considering neighbors’ 5-year mortality. Generalized estimating equations evaluated the effect of neighbors’ 5-year mortality on focal patient’s 5-year mortality. Each 1,000-unit increase in weighted co-presence with a patient who dies within 5 years increases a patient’s mortality odds by 42% (β = 0.357, CI:0.204,0.510). Each 1,000-unit increase in co-presence with a patient surviving 5 years reduces a patient’s odds of dying by 30% (β = −0.344, CI:−0.538,0.149). Our results suggest that social influence occurs in chemotherapy wards, and thus may need to be considered in chemotherapy delivery.
  • A Preliminary Study of Smithport Plain Bottle Morphology in the Southern Caddo Area
    This study expands upon a previous analysis of the Clarence H. Webb collection, which resulted in the identification of two discrete shapes used in the manufacture of the base and body of Smithport Plain bottles. The sample includes the Smithport Plain bottles from the Webb collection, and four new bottles: two previously repatriated specimens in the Pohler Collection, and two from the Mitchell site (41BW4) to test whether those specimens align morphologically with the Belcher Mound or Smithport Landing specimens. Results indicate significant allometry and a significant difference in Smithport Plain body and base shapes for bottles produced at the Smithport Landing and Belcher Mound sites in northwest Louisiana. The Pohler and Mitchell specimens do not differ significantly from those found at Smithport Landing or Belcher Mound. Analysis of the aggregated sample indicates some significant relationships between bottle shape and size, bottle shape and type, and bottle shape and site, highlighting assemblage-level and type-specific variability. The test of morphological disparity by period indicates a possible gradual trend toward standardization, and the test of morphological integration indicates that Caddo bottles are significantly integrated, meaning that those discrete traits used to characterize their shape (rim, neck, body, and base) vary in a coordinated manner. The iterative development of this research design can lead to substantive theoretical gains that augment and bolster discussions of Caddo ceramic morphological organization and vessel production.
  • Delaying Access to a Problem-Skipping Option Increases Effortful Practice: Application of an A/B Test in Large-Scale Online Learning
    We report on an online double-blind randomized controlled field experiment (A/B test) in Math Garden, a computer adaptive practice system with over 150,000 active primary school children. The experiment was designed to eliminate an unforeseen opportunity to practice with minimal effort. Some children tend to skip problems that require deliberate effort, and only attempt problems that they can spontaneously answer. The intervention delayed the option to skip a problem, thereby promoting effortful practice. The results reveal an increase in the exerted effort, without being at the expense of engagement. Whether the additional effort positively affected the children's learning gains could not be concluded. Finally, in addition to these substantial results, the experiment demonstrates some of the advantages of A/B tests, such as the unique opportunity to apply truly blind randomized field experiments in educational science.
  • Sect, Nation, and Identity after the Fall of Mosul: Evidence from a Natural Experiment
    What are the identity consequences of war? Do ethnic groups rally behind the nation when confronted with territorial threat? How do we explain any ethnic, or subethnic, heterogeneity in identity responses? A large literature theorizes identity as endogenous to war. However, identifying such endogenous variation is hindered by the difficulties of conducting social inquiry in conflict settings. I address this gap by exploiting a unique source of exogenous variation---the fall of Mosul to the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham---during the fieldwork for a nationally representative survey in Iraq. I find systematic differences in the identity responses of Sunni and Shi'i Iraqis. While Shi'is cleave to the nation, Sunnis mobilize behind an Arab identity. The finding for Sunnis, however, is confounded by tribal presence: in densely tribal areas Sunnis rally behind the nation. Observed patterns are explicable according to inter- and intra-ethnic differences in threat perception and availability of cross-cutting organizational forms. The findings represent rare systematic empirical evidence of the endogeneity, and subethnic heterogeneity, of identity in an increasingly prevalent form of conflict.
  • What Are Dual Process Models? Implications for Cultural Analysis in Sociology
    In this paper we introduce the idea of the dual process framework (DPF), an interdisciplinary approach to the study of learning, memory, thinking, and action. Departing from the successful reception of Vaisey (2009), we suggest that intradisciplinary debates in sociology regarding the merits of “dual process” formulations can benefit from a better understanding of the theoretical foundations of these models in cognitive and social psychology. We argue that the key is to distinguish the general DPF from more specific applications to particular domains, which we refer to as dual process models (DPMs). We show how different DPMs can be applied to a variety of analytically distinct issues of interest to cultural sociologists beyond specific issues related to morality, such as culture in learning, culture in memory, culture in thinking, and culture in acting processes. We close by outlining the implications of our argument for relevant work in cultural sociology.
  • The Citizenship Advantage: Immigrant Socioeconomic Attainment across Generations in the First Half of the Twentieth Century
    Scholars who study immigrant economic progress often point to the success of Southern and Eastern Europeans who entered in the early 20th century and draw inferences about whether today’s immigrants will follow a similar trajectory. However, little is known about the mechanisms that allowed for European upward advancement. This article begins to fill this gap by analyzing how naturalization policies influenced economic success of immigrants across generations. Specifically, I create new panel datasets that follow immigrants and their children across complete-count US censuses to understand the economic consequences of citizenship attainment. I find that naturalization raised occupational attainment for the first generation that then allowed children to have greater educational attainment and labor market success. I argue that economic progress was conditioned by political statuses for European-origin groups during the first half of the twentieth century.
  • What Are Dual Process Models? Implications for Cultural Analysis in Sociology
  • Does the Public Sector Respond to Private Competition? An Analysis of Privatization and Prison Performance
    The competition thesis states that the introduction of competition from private sector service providers will spur performance improvements in previously monopolistic public sector service providers, who fear (further) delegation of their responsibilities to the private sector. This article examines the competition thesis in the context of incarceration. Using data on U.S. adult correctional facilities in 2000 and 2005, it employs a difference-in-difference strategy to compare over-time performance changes among newly competitive facilities relative to non-competitive facilities. Prison performance is measured along four dimensions (safety, order, activity, and conditions), using survey responses from prisons. The results do not show a beneficial competition effect; prisons in newly competitive states experienced performance change in ways that were statistically indistinguishable from prisons in non-competitive states. Supplemental analyses reveal this finding to be robust to most modifications to the sample and the model. A discussion considers four reasons—constitutional safeguards, professional standards, labor opposition, and non-credible threats—incarceration may be resistant to a competition effect and the implications for public policy.
  • Western Feminism or Return to Authentic Islam? Jordanian Women in Faqir’s Pillars of Salt and My Name is Salma
    This paper focuses on the violence against Jordanian women through Fadia Faqir’s novels, Pillars of Salt and My Name is Salma. These novels question cultural conventions that tolerate men’s oppression and killing of women in the name of the family’s honour in most Arab countries. The analysis of the two novels illustrates how Faqir’s opposition to women’s subordination and victimisation in the name of Islam stems from her interest in going back to authentic teachings of Islam with regard to women, rather than Western feminist theories. In addition, the similarity between Orientalist misrepresentation of women’s status in Islam and patriarchal misinterpretation of the Holy Qura’n and Prophet Muhammad’s Sunnah to subordinate women is explored and examined from the postcolonial feminist critical perspective. This paper highlights feminist contribution to raising awareness about violence against women in some Arab countries through literature.
  • Less Trust, Moore Verification: Determining the Accuracy of Third-Party Data through an Innovative Use of Attention Checks
    SUMMARY In the days following the publication of a Washington Post article that detailed allegations of sexual abuse against Roy Moore, Emerson College Polling released an election poll of Alabama voters that showed Moore maintaining a 10-point lead over his opponent Doug Jones. The Emerson College Poll was conducted using survey data administered by landline phone and over the internet. In this working paper, I analyze raw data from this poll and find irregularities in the internet sample that might suggest that the respondents were not properly sampled by the data vendor that administered the survey, Opinion Access Corp. Specifically, a substantial number of respondents in the internet sample were unable to accurately match their county of residence to their US congressional district when presented with a map of Alabama which displayed both (Figure 2). The misclassification rate for the internet sample was 36% (117 respondents out of 324). Such a high misclassification rate might indicate that some of the respondents in the sample did not reside in Alabama. Although the aim of this paper is not to predict the outcome of an electoral contest, the removal of this poll from aggregate polling averages might indicate a tighter Alabama senate race than previously understood. Emerson College Polling released an additional poll that surveyed support for Roy Moore and Doug Jones in the Alabama senate race on November 28, 2017 that similarly relied on respondents acquired through Opinion Access Corp. If the same irregularities observed in the November 13, 2017 poll are present in the more recent poll, then political observers should interpret the results with the understanding that a substantial number of respondents interviewed might be invalidly included. As researchers increasingly rely on internet data vendors to acquire respondents for polls and surveys, I argue for the necessity of proactively verifying the accuracy of third-party data. With the use of survey “attention checks,” researchers can determine whether data vendors have provided samples that match their requested sampling frame and gain confidence in the validity of their results.
  • Gun Control in the Crosshairs: Christian Nationalism and Opposition to Stricter Gun Laws
    Despite increasingly frequent mass shootings and a growing dissatisfaction with current gun laws, American opposition to federal gun legislation remains strong. We show that opposition to stricter gun control is closely linked to Christian nationalism, a religious cultural framework that mandates a symbiotic relationship between Christianity and civil society. Using data from a national population-based survey, we show that Christian nationalism is an exceptionally strong predictor of opposition to the federal government enacting stricter gun laws. In fact, of all the variables we considered only general political orientation has more predictive power than Christian nationalism. We propose that the gun control debate is complicated by deeply held moral and religious schemas that discussions focused solely on rational public safety calculations do not sufficiently address. For the substantial proportion of American society who are Christian nationalists, gun rights are God-given and sacred. Consequently, attempts to reform existing gun laws must attend to the deeper cultural and religious identities that undergird Americans’ beliefs about gun control.
  • Trust and Fertility Dynamics
    We argue that the divergence in fertility trends in advanced societies is influenced by the interaction of long-standing differences in generalized trust with the increase in women's educational attainment. Our argument builds on the idea that trust enhances individuals’ and couples’ willingness to outsource childcare to outside their extended family. This becomes critically important as women's increased education leads to greater demand for combining work and family life. We test our hypothesis using data from the World Values Survey and European Values Study on 36 industrialized countries between the years 1981 and 2009. Multilevel statistical analyses reveal that the interaction between national-level generalized trust and cohort-level women's education is positively associated with completed fertility. As education among women expands, high levels of generalized trust moderate fertility decline.
  • A Theory of War and Violence
    It is possible that war in modern societies is largely driven by emotions, but in a way that is almost completely hidden. Modernity individualizes the self and tends to ignore emotions. As a result, conflict can be caused by sequences in which the total hiding of humiliation leads to vengeance. This essay outlines a theory of the social-emotional world implied in the work of C. H. Cooley and others. Cooley’s concept of the “looking-glass self” can be used as antidote to the assumptions of modernity: the basic self is social and emotional: selves are based on “living in the mind” of others, with a result of feeling either pride of shame. Cooley discusses shame at some length, unlike most approaches, which tend to hide it. This essay proposes that the complete hiding of shame can lead to feedback loops (spirals) with no natural limit: shame about shame and anger is only the first step. Emotion backlogs can feed back when emotional experiences are completely hidden: avoiding all pain can lead to limitless spirals. These ideas may help explain the role of France in causing WWI, and Hitler’s rise to power in Germany. To the extent that these propositions are true, the part played by emotions and especially shame in causing wars need to be further studied.
  • Understanding Popularity, Reputation, and Social Influence in the Twitter Society
    Understanding the Twitter Society
  • Mercantilist dualization: the introduction of the euro, redistribution of industry rents, and wage inequality in Germany, 1993–2008
  • Religion and Disability: Variation in Religious Service Attendance Rates for Children with Chronic Health Conditions
  • The demographic factors that make Islam the world's fastest-growing major religious group
  • Introduction: For Better or For Worse? Relational Landscapes in the Time of Same-Sex Marriage
    This paper is a pre-print version of the introduction chapter to the edited volume, Queer Families and Relationships After Marriage Equality, published with Routledge in 2018. As same-sex marriage has become a legal reality in a rapidly growing list of countries, the time has come to assess what this means for families and relationships on the ground. Many scholars have already begun to examine how marriage is helping some same-sex couples, but in this introduction I call for a broader and more critical research agenda. In particular, I argue that same-sex marriage crystallizes a key tension surrounding families and relationships in many contemporary societies. On the one hand, strict family norms are relaxing in many places, allowing more people to form more diverse types of caring relationships. On the other hand, some relationships continue to be more honored and protected than others. I frame the spread of same-sex marriage as an opportunity to study this tension, and I argue that queer critiques of marriage provide useful tools for helping ground such research. I argue for research that sees same-sex marriage not as an isolated shift in the status of some same-sex couples, but instead as embedded in broader “relational landscapes” where different relationships of different types intersect with each other and shape each other. Such research would highlight inequalities among married couples and between married and unmarried people, and it would trace changes in other relationship forms outside of same-sex marriage itself. I describe how the chapters in this volume pursue these goals, helping develop queer and other critiques of marriage to lay the groundwork for a contextualized, critical research program on families and relationships after same-sex marriage.
  • Genre, Computation, and the Varieties of Twentieth-Century U.S. Fiction
    Is "literary fiction" a useful genre label in the post-World War II United States? In some sense, the answer is obviously yes; there are sections marked "literary fiction" on Amazon, in bookstores, and on Goodreads, all of which contain many postwar and contemporary titles. Much of what is taught in contemporary fiction classes also falls under the heading of literary fiction, even if that label isn't always used explicitly. On the other hand, literary fiction, if it hangs together at all, may be defined as much by its (or its consumers') resistance to genre as by its positive textual content. That is, where conventional genres like the detective story or the erotic romance are recognizable by the presence of certain character types, plot events, and narrative styles, it is difficult to find any broadly agreeable set of such features by which literary fiction might be consistently identified.
  • Probability and conspiratorial thinking
    Probability and conspiratorial thinking
  • Genre, Computation, and the Varieties of Twentieth-Century U.S. Fiction
  • Patrilocal, Matrilocal or Neolocal? Intergenerational Proximity of Married Couples in China
    Objective: The study describes current patterns of intergenerational proximity in China, and analyzes the structural conditions that are associated with couples' proximity to the husband's and the wife's parents. Background: Patrilocality is a core aspect of the traditional Chinese kinship system, and is deeply rooted in Confucian beliefs. In recent decades, however, this custom has been challenged by internal migration as well changes in family values and preferences. Method: We model the effect of each spouse's household registration (hukou) origin, education level, and sibling structure on intergenerational proximity, using a nationally representative sample of 4,256 couples derived from the 2010 China Family Panel Studies. Results: Almost 75% of married Chinese couples live with or in close proximity to the husband's parents. There is, however, a strong social gradient in intergenerational proximity, and patrilocality is particularly pronounced among rural-origin and less educated couples. Matrilocal residence remains unusual, although it is more likely when the wife has no brothers. Conclusion: The custom of patrilocal residence demonstrates a remarkable resilience, even as other patriarchal traditions have crumbled in the face of China's 'Great Transformation'. Implications: We provide explanations for the persistence of patrilocality and discuss implications for intergenerational support, gender inequality and son preference.
  • Local Ties in Spatial Equilibrium
    People who live in declining areas are more likely to have been born nearby, which implies that they have idiosyncratic ties to where they live. Labor demand shocks to places where people have higher levels of these local ties, proxied by their birth places, lead to less migration and larger movements into and out of the labor market. A model of spatial equilibrium that includes a distribution of workers' preferences for living in their birth places matches these facts and suggests further implications. Declines in local productivity lead to lower migration elasticities and larger declines in real wages after further declines in productivity. Population can take generations to adjust, since ties can only be reallocated slowly. Across a wide class of models, lower migration elasticities make subsidies to local areas more efficient, since they change fewer people's locations. Local subsidies are more efficient in declining areas, where they are the most common.
  • Inequality is a problem of inference: How people solve the social puzzle of unequal outcomes
    A new wave of scholarship recognizes the importance of people’s understanding of inequality that underlies their political convictions, civic values, and policy views. Much less is known however about the sources of people’s different beliefs. I argue that scholarship is hampered by a lack of consensus regarding the conceptualization and measurement of inequality beliefs, in the absence of an organizing theory. To fill this gap, in this paper I develop a framework for studying the social basis of people's explanations for inequality. I propose that people observe unequal outcomes and must infer the invisible forces that brought these about, be they meritocratic or structural in nature. In making inferences about the causes of inequality, people draw on lessons from past experience and information about the world, both of which are biased and limited by their background, social networks, and the environments they have been exposed to. Looking at inequality beliefs through this lens allows for an investigation into the kinds of experiences and environments that are particularly salient in shaping people’s inferential accounts of inequality. Specifically, I make a case for investigating how socializing institutions such as schools and neighborhoods are inferential spaces that shape how children and young adults come to learn about their unequal society and their own place in it. I conclude by proposing testable hypotheses and implications for research.
  • Law as a User: Design, Affordance, and the Technological Mediation of Norms
  • How Black Twitter and other social media communities interact with mainstream news
    People have been forming communities using digital communication technologies since long before the web as we know it today. Social media are only the latest in a long series of digital forums that have enabled global conversations and connections around nearly any topic imaginable. With its emphasis on public accessibility and real-time content production, Twitter has become a major hub for communities of all types and sizes. The issues and voices of people of color and women have attracted much attention from professional journalists over the past few years. Yet many such individuals have criticized journalists’ portrayals and coverage of issues that are important to them. In response, some participants have assumed the role of news creators and distributors, focusing on their communities’ particular concerns. Understanding these emerging social subcultures will allow more accurate portrayals of diverse communities and yield insights for better journalistic engagement in the digital age.
  • Design of a Teacher Education Model that Improves Teacher Educator Efficiency in Processing Teacher Candidate Data
    Existing state of the art practice-based teacher education models either rely on heavy teacher educator time commitment to process teacher candidate performance stored in rich media like audio or video, or rely on teacher candidates to voluntarily share experiences with minimal teacher educator interaction with data. Using an iterative design process, I work with teacher educators to gauge interest in and build a new teacher education model that simplifies how teacher educators interact with rich media. The new model builds on Teacher Moments, an online simulator for preservice teachers, and takes advantage of state of the art speech recognition and data visualization technology to help teacher educators learn the contents of rich media generated by teacher candidates without dedicating the time to listen or watch media. In my investigation, I find that there is an interest in such a model and that the new model succeeds in empowering teacher educators with the ability to use teacher candidate data to inform instructional decisions and substantiate discussion point during group debrief sessions.
  • Magic, explanations, and evil: On the origins and design of witches and sorcerers
    In nearly every documented society, people believe that some misfortunes are attributable to malicious group mates employing magic or supernatural powers. Here I report cross-cultural patterns in these beliefs and propose a theory to explain them. Using the newly-created Survey of Mystical Harm, I show that several conceptions of evil, mystical practitioners recur around the world, including sorcerers (who use learned spells), possessors of the evil eye (who transmit injury through their stares and words), and witches (who possess superpowers, pose existential threats, and engage in morally abhorrent acts). I argue that these beliefs develop from three cultural selective processes – a selection for effective-seeming magic, a selection for plausible explanations of impactful misfortune, and a selection for demonizing myths that justify mistreatment. Separately, these selective schemes produce traditions as diverse as shamanism, conspiracy theories, and campaigns against heretics – but around the world, they jointly give rise to the odious and feared witch. I use the tripartite theory to explain the forms of beliefs in mystical harm and outline ten predictions for how shifting conditions should affect those conceptions. Societally-corrosive beliefs can persist when they are intuitively appealing or serve some believers’ agendas.
  • Opportunities for Agricultural Producers to Participate in Compliance and Voluntary Carbon Markets
    The agricultural sector’s potential for carbon offset generation is widely recognized, but few offset protocols in North American compliance or voluntary markets have successfully generated large volumes of offset credits. Here we use the Rice Cultivation Projects Compliance Offset Protocol—which has generated no offsets since its adoption by the California Air Resources Board in 2015—as a case study to examine barriers to agricultural offset generation. These barriers, which include small projects; low emissions reduction potential; complex emissions quantification; complex, non-standardized data management; and high verification costs, apply to many unproductive agricultural offset protocols and present an opportunity for additional policy action. By examining other protocols in North America’s compliance and voluntary offset markets, we identify design elements that can overcome these barriers and facilitate offset generation. These elements include standardized, technology-aided data management; streamlined emissions quantification methods such as emissions factors or N-balance; and project bundling.
  • Expectancy-value and children's science achievement: Parents matter
  • Students’ Perceptions of a Student-Produced Video Project in the General English Language Course at Srinakharinwirot University, Thailand
    The research was conducted to study students’ perceptions of a student-produced video project (SPV project) in the context of the General English Language Course at Srinakharinwirot University in Thailand. First year students with a pre-intermediate level of English language proficiency, who were enrolled in the General English Language course, were assigned to work on a SPV project that required them to make a short video related to content learnt in class. There were four main objectives of the SPV project which were: (1) to provide an environment that allows students to grasp a deeper understanding of the topic learnt in class; (2) to enhance English language proficiency as well as creativity and problem-solving skills; (3) to promote the use of Information and communication technology (ICT) in language teaching and learning and (4) to provide a collaborative working environment among students. There were 450 students who participated in this project. A questionnaire on the perceptions of the SPV project was administered to 107 students. It covered three aspects (1) the improvement of students’ English language proficiency and life skills, (2) the use of technological tools and (3) collaboration among peers. Questionnaires results were statistically analyzed and reported in descriptive statistics. Findings indicated that students had positive perceptions toward the SPV projects in all three aspects. The aspect that received the highest mean value was that of collaboration among peers. This paper advocates the use of SPV projects as feasible and adaptable language projects suitable for the language learning in the 21st century.
  • Law as a user: design, affordance, and the technological mediation of norms
    Published version available at (open access) Technology law scholars have recently started to consider the theories of affordance and technological mediation, imported from the fields of psychology, HCI, and STS. These theories have been used both as a means of explaining how the law has developed, and more recently in attempts to cast the law per se as an affordance. This exploratory paper summarises the two theories, before considering these applications from a critical perspective, noting certain deficiencies with respect to potential normative application and definitional clarity, respectively. It then posits that in applying them in the legal context, we should seek to retain the relational user-artefact structure around which they were originally conceived, with the law cast as the user of the artefact, from which it seeks certain features or outcomes. This approach is effective for three reasons. Firstly, it acknowledges the power imbalance between law and architecture, where the former is manifestly subject to the decisions made by designers which mediate and transform the substance of the legal norms they instantiate in technological artefacts. Secondly, from an analytical perspective, it can help avoid some of the conceptual and definitional problems evident in the nascent legal literature on affordance. Lastly, approaching designers on their own terms can foster better critical evaluation of their activities during the design process, potentially leading to more effective ‘compliance by design’ where the course of the law’s mediation by technological artefacts can be better anticipated and guided by legislators, regulators, and legal practitioners.
  • Interpretive Asymmetry, Retrospective Inquiry and the Explication of Action in an Incident of Friendly Fire
    Interpretive Asymmetries
  • The Filter Map: Media and the Pursuit of Truth and Legitimacy
    Filter bubbles are only part of the problem. This piece argues that we need to think about truth, legitimacy, and agreeableness when consuming news, and introduces a three-dimensional filter map to help structure our media selection criteria.
  • IT Master Plan
    Rapid business development, supported by technological changes that are not less rapidly, cause the need for a strong alignment between business strategy or organization with the strategy InformationTechnology (IT) and Information System (IS) strategy as its supporter. IT Master Plan (ITMP) as an IT and IS strategy plan encompasses many aspects, including the aspects of the technology architecture, the roadmap for its implementation, and the supporting standards. This article offers a methodological analog of composing the IT Master Plan preparation.
  • Teaching Reading Comprehension by Using Computer-Based Reading: An Experimental Study in Indonesian English Language Teaching
    This study was conducted to know whether there is a differencein students’ achievement in reading comprehension through the use of computer-based reading method at the eighth-grade students of Junior High School 13 Banjarmasin, Indonesia. The design used is a quasi-experimental with purposive sampling technique. Sixty students of Junior High School 13 Banjarmasin were used as the samples. 8-E was chosen as the experimental group and was taught by using computer-based reading in three meetings, while 8-F was chosen as the control group and was taught without using computer-based reading in three meetings. Three instruments were used to gather the data, they are documentation, observation, and tests. The results showed that both groups gained change in their achievements. From the calculation result, the experimental group got the average score of 53.33 in pre-test and 63.33 in post-test. The control group got average score 47 in pre-test and 49.5 in post-test. After conducting a t-test, it was revealed that the calculated t-value was greater than t-table (3.597 > 2.00) at the significance level 0.05. Thus, there are different achievement between the experimental group and the control group. Therefore, it can be concluded that the proper use of computer-based reading can upgrade students’ reading comprehension ability. It is suggested to teachers to consider the use computer-based reading as the method of teaching reading comprehension.
  • Planarity and Street Network Representation in Urban Form Analysis
    Models of street networks underlie research in urban travel behavior, accessibility, design patterns, and morphology. These models are commonly defined as planar, meaning they can be represented in two dimensions without any underpasses or overpasses. However, real-world urban street networks exist in three-dimensional space and frequently feature grade separation such as bridges and tunnels: planar simplifications can be useful but they also impact the results of real-world street network analysis. This study measures the nonplanarity of drivable and walkable street networks in the centers of 50 cities worldwide, then examines the variation of nonplanarity across a single city. It develops two new indicators - the Spatial Planarity Ratio and the Edge Length Ratio - to measure planarity and describe infrastructure and urbanization. While some street networks are approximately planar, we empirically quantify how planar models can inconsistently but drastically misrepresent intersection density, street lengths, routing, and connectivity.
  • A MOOC for Literature Integrated Language Classroom: Pedagogical Suggestions for the Development of Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS)
    An important component of language teaching is the development of higher order thinking skills (HOTS) among the students. In some language classes, this is done in the literature component of the curriculum. However, in many circumstances teachers are not trained on how to integrate critical thinking skills in literature integrated language learning classes. Training teachers nationwide can be costly to a country if the traditional way of in-service training is adopted. One of the ways to address this problem is by providing online training programmes. A viable alternative platform for online engagement is the Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) which has the potential to reach the mass. A training module would have to take into consideration the fact that different schools could be using different literary texts. Hence, the training module for teachers would need to focus on activities or pedagogical approaches rather than the text itself. This paper will focus on the aspects to consider when developing a MOOC for this purpose. This study will focus on Malaysian teachers who are expected to integrate HOTS into their literature lessons. When developing the materials, two important aspects that need to be considered are the components of HOTS and also the approaches that can be adopted. This paper discusses the approaches that can be applied to develop a specific aspect of HOTS. It focuses on the Malaysian teachers who are expected to integrate HOTS into their literature lessons.
  • A review essay on Lisa Wade's American Hookup and Mark Regenerus' Cheap Sex: Is Recreational Sex a Social Problem? Or what’s wrong with kid’s today?
    This is a review essay about sexuality in contemporary American society based on a review of two new books, American Hookup by Lisa Wade and Cheap Sex by Mark Regenerus. The review is forthcoming in Contemporary Sociology.
  • Lefebvre'nin Mekân Kuramının Yapısal ve Kavramsal Çerçevesine Dair Bir Okuma
    English Abstract: By reading Lefebvre’s book ‘The Production of Space’ book, this paper aims to reassess the structure and main conceptual framework of the theory of space presented in the book. Based on this as a main structure of the theory, Lefebvre’s periodization of space – aimed at the tracing the spaces being produced during each mode of production – is discussed. In the paper, the spatial triad aiming at understanding and conceptualization of social space is discussed as well. Thus, for any study of space in different contexts, an easily adaptable and applicable structural and conceptual framework of Lefebvre’s theory is presented. Turkish Abstract: Makalenin amacı Lefebvre'nin 'Mekânın Üretimi' kitabının bir okumasını gerçekleştirerek, kitapta öne sürülen mekân kuramının yapısının ve temel kavramsal çerçevesinin yeniden değerlendirilmesidir. Bundan hareketle kuramın temel yapısı olarak her üretim tarzında üretilmekte olan mekânların çözümlemesine yönelik Lefebvre'nin önerdiği dönemselleştirmesi değerlendirilmiştir. Ayrıca makalede toplumsal mekânın anlamlandırılması ve kavramsallaştırılması için kuramda öne sürülen mekânsal üçlü değerlendirilmiştir. Böylece, somut bağlamda gerçekleştirilebilecek herhangi bir araştırma için Lefebvre'nin kuramının kolayca uygulanabilir ve benimsenebilir bir kavramsal çerçevesi çizilmiştir.
  • Deploying, Updating and Running Electric Vehicles Charging Facilities in the US
    The electric vehicles, or may be called plug-in cars, are continuing to make waves across the modern vehicle industry. So far electric vehicles can be distorted by pure and hybrid, which are usually called Plug-in Electric Vehicles and Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles. (James Larminie, 2012) The electric vehicles have contribution to protect environment through reducing carbon emission and pollution by improving the using efficiency of fuel and electricity, and indirect use of pollution-free energy, like wind energy, waterpower and nuclear. Electric vehicles need electricity as fuel, so the charging facilities are becoming an important infrastructure. Up to now, the US has about 120,000 gas stations while charging stations are only 10,000. Unfortunately, most of them are slow charging piles, like Level 1 or 2. (James Larminie, 2012) So sufficient charging facilities, especially Level 3 piles, should be deployed in order to meet the increasing of electric vehicles quantity. However, we have to consider about many following problems. This paper introduced some simple technical details of batteries and all levels of stations, and discussed about where and how to deploy, cost and benefit, safety issues and other challenges, and gave a prediction of what the future tendency will be.
  • Gender/Professional Identity Integration Promotes Women’s Negotiation Performance via Reduced Social Backlash Concerns
    In the context of competitive negotiations, a stereotypically masculine task, state gender-profession identity integration was expected to facilitate women’s performance. Across three studies examining women’s first offers in competitive negotiations we found evidence supporting this proposition. Furthermore, a factor previously identified associated with gender differences in negotiation performance- reduced social backlash concerns- was identified as the mediating factor for enhancing the performance of high state identity integration women. We discuss the implications of these findings for ongoing research and theory on gender, identity, and negotiations.
  • Fictionality
    The distinction between fiction and non-fiction, between a text that is true and one that is not, is one of the oldest on record. Ever since we have been thinking about the act of narration, we have addressed the related meanings of truth and imagination. This is what Aristotle designated as the difference between the communicative use of language (legein) and its creative use (poiein). For millennia, we have been debating whether there are inherent features of being fictional or whether it is simply a matter of intention, that perhaps there is nothing unique to the language of fictional discourse after all. How do we know when a text is signalling that it is "true" or, by extension, not true? And what might quantity have to tell us about this most elementary of distinctions?
  • Is it worth door-knocking? Evidence from a UK-based GOTV field experiment on the effect of leaflets and canvass visits on voter turnout
    Do party leaflets increase turnout, or does campaigning require canvass visits in order to increase turnout? Get Out The Vote (GOTV) experiments consistently find that campaigning needs to be personal in order to be effective. However, the imbalance between US and European-based studies has led to recent calls for further European GOTV experiments. There are also comparatively few partisan experiments. I report the findings of a UK-based field experiment conducted with the Liberal Democrats in 2017. Results show that party leaflets boost turnout by 4.3 percentage points, while canvassing has a small additional effect (0.6 percentage points). The study also represents the first individual level experiment to compare GOTV effects between postal voters and in-person voters outside the US.
  • A MOOC for Literature Integrated Language Classroom: Pedagogical Suggestions for the Development of Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS)
  • Understanding Gender and Character Agency in the 19th Century Novel
    The relationship between character identity and character action is an established topic of literary study. In Morphology of the Folktale, Vladimir Propp argues against the separation of "who acts" from "the question of the actions themselves," instead advocating an approach that studies characters according to their functions. Similarly, the notion of the literary archetype, as influenced by both Joseph Campbell and Carl Jung, highlights the way in which what characters do influences the way we perceive who characters are. The notion of literary stereotypes is also tied to this discussion. As Bamman, O'Connor, and Smith observe in their study of personas in film, stereotypical characters are "defined by a fixed set of actions widely known to be representative of a class." While actions are only one part of a complex network of descriptive tools that authors may use to create characters, they may offer us a useful insight into the way that certain behaviors can align with various character identity traits in literature. A study of character action may serve as a proxy to not only demarcate character types, but also to investigate what behaviors, and types of behaviors, were conventionally aligned with different groups of characters. Bamman, Underwood, and Smith (2014) attempt something similar in "A Bayesian Mixed Effects Model of Literary Character." In that work, the authors focus on modeling specific character "personas" by studying semantically related words that occur in proximity to character mentions. The authors note that "articulating what a true 'persona' might be for characters is inherently problematic" and they acknowledge that the "personas learned so far [by their model] do not align neatly with character types known to literary historians." Nevertheless, their study revealed compelling associations between certain personas and certain genres and, more importantly for our current research, that certain personas were "clearly gendered." In noting the later, the authors write that "analysis of latent character types might cast new light on the history of gender in fiction." Our work attempts a more direct and specific study of character agency in the context of character gender. To do this, we explore trends in behavior associated with male and female characters in 3,329 19th century novels.
  • Using CALL in Teaching Writing: An Explicatory Study on its Efficacy for ESL/EFL Learners
    The current study aims to analyse and substantiate the impact of use and importance of Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL) to students writing in English as a second/foreign language (ESL/EFL). It is an explicatory study based on the main findings of researchers in the field and the practical involvement and observation of the researcher as an ESL/EFL teacher in writing classrooms. The scientific literature on the subject as well as the analytical work done on it have been critically examined for efficacy and proof. The study also investigates the usefulness of the various CALL-based materials and tools employed in the teaching process, and it examines how far they can help students in their classroom practices. The major outcomes of the study demonstrated that most teachers and students have found that CALL has helped them in a positive way, has motivated them to learn ESL/EFL writing, and has improved their knowledge and capability in writing English effortlessly. It has also been discovered that this method of teaching writing enriches their information and plays an important role in developing their academic skills. The current study, therefore, recommends that students should use computers in learning English writing, in particular, in order to increase the level of learning.
  • How to Use L2 Movies Effectively to Learn New Vocabulary: A New Theoretical Perspective
    This paper explores the impact of first language (L1) and second language (L2) subtitles in films. From a new perspective, the paper looks at the role of repetition as a separate entity that influences vocabulary learning despite subtitle types. To maximise vocabulary acquisition, the paper recommends that learners should be exposed to repeated input. The repetition should be comprehensible and to reach a comprehensible input, subtitles could be then considered. Overall, L1 subtitles are preferred for low proficiency learners whilst L2 subtitles could be geared towards high proficiency learners since the aim behind watching movies in the target language is to have a comprehensible input. Nonetheless, different subtitles should be used to facilitate the meaning and not as a final tool of acquiring new vocabulary as this acquisition will take place with repetition. Thus, the current paper could form a starting point in an approach that lays emphasis on repetition in movies watching rather than using a particular type of subtitle
  • Effectiveness of an Educational Software System (Desire2Learn) in Teaching English Grammar
    Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL) has brought enormous developments in teaching and learning process recently. Teaching with computer technology using different methodologies is one of the widely investigated areas in education sector nowadays. This research aims at exploring the efficacy of Computer Assisted Language Teaching (CALT) using Desire2Learn (D2L) Educational software, for teaching subject-verb agreement deductively at Al-Majma’ah University in Saudi Arabia. This study also investigates the attitude of Saudi EFL learners towards CALT-D2L’s effect on their learning achievement. Sixty nine undergraduate students of level three from Department of English, College of Education, Al-Majmaah University, were involved in this study. The sample was divided into two groups: (CALT-D2L “Experimental Group” while the other traditional chalk and talk method based as “Control Group”. Analysis of the data of both groups indicates that experimental group outperformed control group in term of the percentage of result compared. Moreover students exhibit positive attitude towards using D2L software in grammar learning.
  • Technology in the Language Classroom: How Social Media is Changing the Way EFL is Taught
    This paper explores how technology, and specifically the application of social media, in the English as a foreign language (EFL) classroom is changing how language is taught. The paper begins with a depiction of computer-assisted language learning (CALL) and how technology has generally been employed in EFL classrooms in the past few decades. This critical appraisal, which provides the context for the paper, assesses how successfully technology has been viewed in relation to language teaching and learning and how it has developed up to the present day. The focus then moves to social media apps and mobile technology as a contemporary form of CALL. The discussion considers the ways in which social media is used in language classrooms and more importantly the things it can offer the EFL teacher and learner. Importantly, the paper concludes by proposing ways in which these types of technologies can be better incorporated across cultures and contexts to promote EFL teaching and learning.
  • The Implementation of Hybrid Computer Mediated Collaborative Learning (HCMCL) for Promoting Students’ Critical Thinking at IAIN Salatiga, Indonesia
    This article stresses on answering the questions on how HCMCL implemented for promoting students’ critical thinking, and how the students’ potentials of critical thinking in the aspects of communication, reasoning, and self-reflection promoted in the class. The ethnographic-case study was undertaken in writing skills. Descriptive- Qualitative is used to analyze the findings. The data gathered from in-depth interview, field notes, questionnaires and students’ documents. The finding reveals that the lecturer considered the four key dimensions of time, fidelity, space, and humanness in its implementation. The data also reveals that HCMCL can promote students potentials of critical thinking in communication, reasoning, and self reflection. However, some points needed to be improved by the learners in the first aspect especially related with linguistics conventions. HCMCL provides the chances for the learners to communicate with their peers and other members of group to complete the tasks. This process demand the students to work in a group which requires another set of complex skills; students needed to manage interdependence with others and to reconcile differences for mutual benefit.
  • EFL Teachers' and Students' Approaches in Using Teaching Aids: A case Study
    The use of teaching aids plays an important role in enhancing students' interaction and participation. Therefore, this research aims to investigate teachers' and students' approaches in using teaching aids and to reinforce their importance. This research also tried to verify whether teaching aids activate teaching and learning processes and more specifically if they make students interactive and effective participants. Moreover, it encourage teachers to update their methods of teaching. A questionnaire is used as an instrument to collect the necessary data. The questionnaire content was based on items to maximize the benefits of various teaching aids use in English as a foreign language (EFL) classroom settings. Twenty teachers and fifty students took part in the questionnaire survey. Findings from the teachers' and students' questionnaires demonstrated that teaching aids help teachers and students activate their teaching and learning processes. Moreover, they help in classroom setting and management. Teachers' attitudes as well as their perception toward using teaching aids to motivate students are positive since they all find the necessity of using them to improve students' English performance. As a result, teachers should be aware that disregarding of teaching aids use impedes learners' motivation. It has been recommended that teachers need to systematically design their own teaching aids for effective teaching and learning betterment.
  • Investigating Instagram as an EFL Learning Tool
    Research on Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL), Mobile Assisted Language Learning (MALL), and Computer Mediated Communication (CMC) has informed us that the adaptation of new technologies helps in overcoming some of the challenges faced in language classrooms; such as the limited classroom time (Cardoso & Collins, 2016). In light of CALL, MALL, and CMC research, the purpose of this corpus driven study was to investigate the potential of the Instagram platform in learning English as a foreign language (EFL): particularly whether the type of Instagram post (vocabulary or grammar) had an effect on the amount of learners’ EFL output, the output accuracy, and the amount of feedback the learners received. The data was collected from authentic EFL use from the comments section of 15 Instagram accounts that were targeting the Saudi learners as their population. A total of 140 comments were analyzed (70 for vocabulary and 70 for grammar). A non-parametric Mann-Whitney test was carried out and indicated a statistical significance Z (140)= -2.38, p. = 017 for output, with a relatively small effect size (d = .438), showing that vocabulary posts elicited more output from the commenters. However, post types did not have any influence on learners’ output accuracy and the amount of feedback they received. From a pedagogical standpoint, teachers are encouraged to use social media as means for creating language practice opportunities, and as a source of extra input outside the classroom.
  • A Study of EFL Saudi Students' Use of Mobile Social Media Applications for Learning
    This research addresses the gaps in the literature on m-learning approaches in Saudi Arabia, with a focus on English as a Foreign Language (EFL) students studying at university level. The research aimed to explore university students’ use of social media applications and their role in language learning, with a focus on how mobile devices can best be utilised. It analysed the attitudes of 102 learners towards the use of social media to improve language learning both inside and outside the classroom setting. Students of both genders completed a questionnaire, and five students engaged in semi-structured interviews. The aim was to discover whether the students are currently using social media applications to enhance their language skills, and what the students’ attitudes are towards the use of social media via mobile devices inside and outside the classroom. Prior to designing the research instruments, the literature was reviewed, including examining the attitudes of learners in different countries towards mobile technologies, and to decide on the best approach to take in examining attitudes towards new forms of learning. Based on the findings from the literature, appropriate questions were devised, and these reveal an overall positive response towards from the student participants towards using social media and mobile technologies to facilitate learning English. The results of this research are positive, and it is important that Saudi Arabia keeps up to date with advancements in technology to ensure the best learning experience for learners and maximise their potential.
  • “Interactive Media in English for Math at Kindergarten: Supporting Learning, Language and Literacy with ICT”
    Modern society is actively engaged into technology due to educational reasons. Interactive media is considered as an integral part in language learning process to support the efficiency of the study process taking into consideration the needs and achievements of students. Therefore, new trends appear in the education process and technologies have to be successfully integrated by the teachers working in early childhood education institutions. The implementation of information and communication technology (ICT) curriculum at early childhood education is one of the educational sector development efforts to improve and support young learners’ learning, language and literacy with ICT. English for Math activities are designed for kindergarten students so that they can experience the learning of Math in English in fun and exciting ways by creating the atmosphere of learning like playing integrated with ICT which will help the very young learners to understand the learning materials. This discussion is aimed at describing English for Math learning with ICT for kindergarten students. Moreover, the description can become one of the basic forms of the development of interactive learning based on students’ self-learning. Besides, the arrangement of this study is also aimed to improve young learners’ habitual and self-learning.
  • Creating a Web-based Communicative Learning Environment through Interactive Blogs: English Language Acquisition
    This study aims to assess the viability of blogging in the context of Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) as a productive web-based learning environment (WBLE). The blog sections of three English as a second language (ESL) websites were evaluated and Computer Mediated Communication (CMC) which appears in the comments sections of blog posts was examined through reference to excerpts of various comments. The analysis indicates that as a supplementary means of language education, both the blog content and the debate that hosts in its comments section are useful to language learners all over the world who have access to the internet. It may not facilitate certain areas of cognition that are maximized by Communicative Language Teaching (CLT), however it does expose readers to necessary information in an educational context and provide them with an outlet for spontaneous CMC (SCMC), allowing autonomous parsing of the target language (English).
  • Constructing Identities Online- An Exploratory Study of Saudi Youths’ Strategies
    Language is used not only for communication but also for enacting multiple identities to reveal information about oneself such as who we are, where we come from, who we believe in etc. This is done by means of using a tribe, gender, region or a country specific dialect, accent, sociolect, vocabulary or phrase to identify oneself with a specific tribe, gender, social class or ethnic group, a region or a nation. Greetings such as-‘Assalamualeikum’ (‘peace be with you’), ‘God bless’, ‘Shalom’ (‘peace’) are used by people to identify oneself with a particular faith (Muslim, Christian and Jewish respectively). Thus, language use serves here as a means of constructing religious identity. Region and tribe specific dialects, accents and sociolects are also used to construct regional, social class, ethnic or tribal identities. This process of identity construction occurs both in the real world as well as in a virtual reality on-line, where people can either take their real identity with them or construct an on-line identity that can be as divergent as they wish. As on-line communication gains significance in everyone’s life, research on the nature of this communication is required to uncover various underlying issues governing this type of communication. In this respect, the present study aimed to explore the strategies and ways in which language and other means were used by Saudi Arabian youths to construct and enact their various identities such as gender, social class, tribal, regional, religious etc. To this end, a social networking website was designed and Saudi youths (aged between 18 to 30 years) were invited to participate by posting and chatting online on the website. Of such posts, around 300 comments were selected for the content analysis. The analysis of these comments posted by 71 Saudi females and 85 males over two months revealed that Saudi youths used their language on-line to construct and enact their gender, tribal, regional, religious identities. Participants were seen to be using their tribe, region, gender, religion and Arab culture related words and phrases to construct and reveal their tribal, regional, gender, religious and cultural identities consciously and unconsciously.
  • Unraveling English Department Students’ Perception of Using e-Learning
    One of the most current issues in recent years is the development of integrating online learning in the classroom. In Indonesia, it is seen on the Act of the Minister of Education and Culture No. 109 Year 2013. This issue came from the problems on the availability, accessibility, quality, equality, and guarantee. Further, an effort conducted by the Ministry of Education is developing e-Learning platform at universities. As one of the universities who supports the government policy, the English Department of Universitas Lambung Mangkurat applies for this e-Learning program through the As a result, there is a need to unravel students’ perceptions in the implementation of this policy as one of the ways to see the successful standard and to explore students’ views. Employing qualitative method, this study uncovered the foci of English Department students’ view of the independent assessment, learning outcome, and evaluation of learning English online. Using a validated questionnaire and an interview, the results showed that e-Learning program supports students in learning English. It is seen from their perceptions of the independent assessment that the students gave a good response. On the learning outcome, the students responses were in the category of fair. Meanwhile, on the e-Learning evaluation, the students’ responses were in the fair category. The availability, accessibility, quality, equality, and guarantee problems can be lessened through e-Learning. Thus, this study offers proof to other universities which are about to integrate e-Learning to improve and complete their face-to-face classroom.
  • Attitudes to CAT Tools: Application on Egyptian Translation Students and Professionals
    Computer-aided Translation (CAT) tools have become indispensable in most organizations, with major benefits including increasing productivity, unifying terminology and minimizing translation costs. With both positive and negative feedback being reported about these systems, it is imperative to further explore users’ attitudes to CAT tools. Given the scarcity of research conducted in this field on the English-Arabic language pair, the present study attempts to examine users’ attitudes to CAT tools among 114 translation students and professional translators in Egypt. The main purpose of the research is to examine user attitudes towards these tools with specific reference to their perceived benefits, ease of use and compatibility. The survey instrument was adapted from Moore and Benbasat with some modifications. Drawing upon Dillon and Fraser’s premises, the research investigates the relationship between user attitudes to CAT tools and various factors, including years of experience, computer skills and type of texts translated. Semi-structured interviews were also used to achieve a mixed-method. The study points to an overall favorable attitude among participants towards using CAT tools, despite some mixed and contradicting opinions on some aspects. The findings also confirm that users with better computer skills have more favorable attitudes towards CAT tools unlike those with more experience in translation. The study concludes with some recommendations for future research.
  • The Effectiveness of YouTube Live Streaming as Digital Learning Media in Tourism and Guiding Subject
    The purpose of this paper is to study the effectiveness communication of YouTube live streaming (YTL) among the students of English Department at State Islamic University of Maulanan Malik Ibrahim Malang, Indonesia concerning the teaching effectiveness. The sample of the study is 45 students of English Department who took Tourism and Guiding II in the sixth semester 2016/2017 as the elective subject. The researchers adopted exploratory study by distributing questionnaires on the communication effectiveness, learning effectiveness and You–tube Live Streaming implementation. The instrument had 15 items in which each point had five items with a three –point Likert scale. The findings show that the communication effectiveness of YTL was considered good in spite of the absence of the teacher and the noise disturbance, the learning effectiveness was increasing due to the students’ own learning style, comfortable feeling and the repetition of video display. To implement YTL teachers’ digital literacy is highly needed. On the implementation of YouTube –live streaming for teaching it is the responsibility of the school or campus management. The researchers recommends conducting further study on teachers’ digital literacy, and teachers’ made YouTube-live streaming materials.
  • Experienced and Novice Teachers’ Awareness and Attitudes towards ICT in Language Classroom: A study conducted in a Thai context
    This paper aims to investigate the English as foreign language (EFL) as teachers’ attitudes towards the use of information and communication technology (ICT) in Thai setting. The participants of this study were six English teachers from an international university in Thailand which were further classified into two groups of “novice” and “ experienced” teachers. Data were collected via interview methods with 6 teachers at an international university in Thailand. Findings show novice teachers have a positive attitude towards the use of ICT in their language classroom as compared to their experienced peers. The novice teacher makes use of more ICT-related materials and activities when compared to their more experienced counterpart. Nevertheless, many language instructors mentioned certain challenges in using ICT . Besides, teachers’ acceptance or rejection of ICTs has pedagogical implications. It is agreed upon that ICTs make the learning process more enjoyable since students becomes more involved to learn through wide range of topics, materials and tools.
  • Considerations for the Development of Computer-Assisted Language Learning (CALL) Teacher Training Course: A Practical Experience from a Call Course Development in Indonesia
    The need for technology training for teachers will keep on growing in line with the development of technology itself. Although technology nowadays is more and more user friendly and may need no specific training on how to use it, teachers need to possess the knowledge that underpins the idea of using it for teaching and learning process. Teachers need to have solid pedagogical knowledge on how to use the technology to deliver contents to their students. Therefore, a technology-training course for teachers is always necessary. This paper presents the partial results of a design based study/research (DBR) on the development of online technology training for teachers with focus on CALL in Indonesia. Questions regarding factors affecting online CALL course and ways to improve the course in terms of training materials, activities, as well as the administration of the training are addressed in the study. Based on the study, some considerations on how to design such technology-training course are proposed. The considerations are ranging from aspects associated with technology competence for teacher standards, constructivism in online learning, adult learning theory, online instructional models, the technology, pedagogy and content knowledge (TPACK) framework and open educational resources (OER). Information regarding those aspects will be useful to assist other CALL teacher training course developers later to inform their decision in the development of the course which is based on a good theoretical understanding as well as highly practical in learning activities
  • An Analysis of Learner Autonomy and Autonomous Learning Practices in Massive Open Online Language Courses
    The study investigates the perception of learner autonomy with Massive Open Online Language Course (MOOLC) participants, more specifically; (i) to what extent EFL learners in an English MOOLC are autonomous, (ii) the perception of learners’ and teachers’ roles in learner autonomy, and (iii) the autonomous learning practices the learners are involved in by participating in the MOOLCs. It contributes to the understanding of online learner as an agent in highly heterogeneous language learning contexts and the link between online learning and learner autonomy. The mixed-method design is employed to present data from a Learner Autonomy Questionnaire by Joshi (2011) conducted with 57 participants from three English MOOLCs with a variety of focus as well as a content analysis method was used on the interaction data in the form of open discussion forum posts, which were added by the participants, to create a frame of autonomous learning activities in these MOOLCs and learners’ attitudes towards them. The findings show that the English MOOLC participants are highly autonomous and willing to be more responsible for their own learning. Similarly, the learners’ perception of their own roles indicates a positive inclination towards autonomy. Furthermore, the participants favor the MOOLCs that encourage learner-centered and autonomous language learning practices. Due to the interactive, communicative, and collaborative nature of MOOLCs, learners are advised to develop globalized autonomous skills to participate effectively in such multicultural learning platforms because learner autonomy goes beyond traditional classrooms.
  • Creating a Web-based Communicative Learning Environment through Interactive Blogs: English Language Acquisition
  • Constructing Identities Online- An Exploratory Study of Saudi Youths’ Strategies
  • “Interactive Media in English for Math at Kindergarten: Supporting Learning, Language and Literacy with ICT”
  • A Study of EFL Saudi Students' Use of Mobile Social Media Applications for Learning
  • Teaching Reading Comprehension by Using Computer-Based Reading: An Experimental Study in Indonesian English Language Teaching
  • An Analysis of Learner Autonomy and Autonomous Learning Practices in Massive Open Online Language Courses
  • Students’ Perceptions of a Student-Produced Video Project in the General English Language Course at Srinakharinwirot University, Thailand
  • The Effectiveness of YouTube Live Streaming as Digital Learning Media in Tourism and Guiding Subject
  • Technology in the Language Classroom: How Social Media is Changing the Way EFL is Taught
  • Attitudes to CAT Tools: Application on Egyptian Translation Students and Professionals
  • Considerations for the Development of Computer-Assisted Language Learning (CALL) Teacher Training Course: A Practical Experience from a Call Course Development in Indonesia
  • EFL Teachers' and Students' Approaches in Using Teaching Aids: A case Study
  • Experienced and Novice Teachers’ Awareness and Attitudes towards ICT in Language Classroom: A study conducted in a Thai context
  • Unraveling English Department Students’ Perception of Using e-Learning
  • Effectiveness of an Educational Software System (Desire2Learn) in Teaching English Grammar
  • The Implementation of Hybrid Computer Mediated Collaborative Learning (HCMCL) for Promoting Students’ Critical Thinking at IAIN Salatiga, Indonesia
  • Investigating Instagram as an EFL Learning Tool
  • How to Use L2 Movies Effectively to Learn New Vocabulary: A New Theoretical Perspective
  • Using CALL in Teaching Writing: An Explicatory Study on its Efficacy for ESL/EFL Learners
  • Understanding Gender and Character Agency in the 19th Century Novel
  • Inquiry into the future of the private rental sector
    This study investigated the Australian private rental sector (PRS) focusing on institutional change, including formal rules (policies and regulation); organisations and structures; and informal rules (social norms and practices). It also reviewed the PRS in ten countries: Australia, Belgium, Canada, Germany, Ireland, New Zealand, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States.
  • Ride with Me—Ethnic Discrimination, Social Markets, and the Sharing Economy
  • Fictionality
  • Women in Science: Surpassing Subtle and Overt Biases through Intervention Programs
    This study discusses factors that keep women from entering science and technology, which include social stereotypes that they struggle against, lack of maternity leave and other basic human rights, and the climate that makes them leave research positions for administrative ones. We then describe intervention processes that have been successful in bringing the ratio of women close to parity, compare different minorities in the US, and also consider data from India, Western and Eastern Europe. We conjecture that programs that connect the different levels of education are needed in addition to hiring more women, providing them with basic human rights from when they begin their PhD onwards and promoting support networks for existing employees. The authors of this paper hail from Sri Lanka, Romania, India, and the United States. We hold undergraduate and graduate degrees in physics or chemistry from the United States, India and Switzerland. Our conclusions are based on data that is publicly available, on data we have gathered, and on anecdotal evidence from our own experience.
  • Engage Me: How YouTube Motor Vloggers Can Maximise User Engagement
    Without a true understanding of how users engage with content on social media, it can be difficult to understand its value, impact, and how to exploit it to one’s advantage. How a user engages can be divided up into many sub sections, but in its simplest notion it’s how a person interacts with the content that is presented to them. Engagement is also a sing that a person has payed attention to what is being presented to them. YouTube was created by former PayPal employees Steve Chen, Jawed Karim and Chad Hurley in 2005, and today with 1 billion monthly active users, it is the most used social networking and video sharing platform on the internet. YouTube also has a powerful effect in that it enables people to spread content effortlessly and freely to a wide and open audience. Understanding the incredible power of YouTube can be highlighted by examples such as Justin Bieber who rocketed to international stardom and fame via the platform, or how the world stopped and focused on Kony in 2012. Much of this success and popularity of the website has been explained by the fact that users are able to communicate “through textual and video responses as well as video rating systems” (Milliken, Gibson, O’Donnell & Singer 2008). This research paper serves to make important contributions to topics of viral marketing and engagement behaviours of users on YouTube. This is important when considering the popularity of YouTube and the numbers of users actively engaging in content, especially for business and individuals who use YouTube as their source of income. Research on various microblogging platforms has revealed “that microblogs can be tailored to facilitate informal communication between colleagues in organizations”, (Suh, Hong, Pirolli, & Chi, 2010) but there is little research that explores video blogging communities on YouTube. This research paper will explore how tags and the length of videos impact user engagement in the Motor Vlogging community. In section 2, a general overview of related in relevant research is presented, followed by the research question and hypothesis in section 3 which explores the relationship between social engagement on YouTube Motor Vlogger videos from Australia and how the presence of tags and the length of the videos impact on the levels of engagement. The methodology of the research is presented in section 4 with results presented and discussed in sections 5 and 6 respectively.
  • The Audit of Venus
    Gerber, Alison. 2014. “The Audit of Venus.” Berkeley Journal of Sociology 58(1):6–13.
  • Expert Knowledge Influences Decision-Making for Couples Receiving Positive Prenatal Chromosomal Microarray Testing Results
    To assess how participants receiving abnormal prenatal genetic testing results seek information and understand the implications of results, 27 US female patients and 12 of their male partners receiving positive prenatal microarray testing results completed semi-structured phone interviews. These interviews documented participant experiences with chromosomal microarray testing, understanding of and emotional response to receiving results, factors affecting decision-making about testing and pregnancy termination, and psychosocial needs throughout the testing process. Interview data were analyzed using a modified grounded theory approach. In the absence of certainty about the implications of results, understanding of results is shaped by biomedical expert knowledge (BEK) and cultural expert knowledge (CEK). When there is a dearth of BEK, as in the case of receiving results of uncertain significance, participants rely on CEK, including religious/spiritual beliefs, “gut instinct,” embodied knowledge, and social network informants. CEK is a powerful platform to guide understanding of prenatal genetic testing results. The utility of culturally situated expert knowledge during testing uncertainty emphasizes that decision-making occurs within discourses beyond the biomedical domain. These forms of “knowing” may be integrated into clinical consideration of efficacious patient assessment and counseling.
  • The Tell-Tale Hat: Surfacing the Uncertainty in Folklore Classification
    Classification is a vexing problem in folkloristics. Although broad genre classifications such as "ballad", "folktale", "legend", "proverb", and "riddle" are well established and widely accepted, these formal classifications are coarse and do little more than provide a first level sort on materials for collections that can easily include tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of records. Many large collections of folklore have been classified using systems designed for very specific tasks, usually related to early theories about the spread of folk narrative. Beyond the straightforward parsing of folk expressions into easily recognized formal genres (e.g. ballad, riddle, joke, legend, fairytale, etc.), the overarching emphasis of these schemas is on topic indexing. Perhaps best known of these indices is the ATU index of fairy tales, designed to assist scholars who are interested in the comparison of fairy tales from one or more cultures. Another well-known index, the motif index of folk literature compiled by Stith Thompson (1955-58), is designed to assist scholars in discovering the relationships between complete narratives and their component parts, as well as the movement of motifs across time and space, where the motif is conceptualized as "the smallest element in a tale having a power to persist in tradition." Other genre specific classification schemes include the Migratory Legend [ML] catalog and Danmarks gamle Folkeviser [DgF]. More collection specific indices include the Child Ballads and, of particular interest to this study, the typological indices to the Danish folklore collector Evald Tang Kristensen's legend collections.
  • Variations in Music Education Curriculum and the Organization of Listening
    Sociologists argue that we learn evaluative skills, such as those to distinguish qualities of music, through practical knowledge. Yet sociologists have not asked how we understand those sonic events as musical in the first place. Through nine months of semi-structured observations in six elementary school music classrooms, I examine how music education draws symbolic boundaries around musical sound. I find that variations in curriculum produce different organizational practices in the classroom. These practices develop what is a basic sensory skill – listening – in very different ways. I identify four dimensions of teacher performance that support these differences: authorized sound-makers, constrained movement, enforced perspectives, and selected attention. These variations in music education produce contrasting performances for recognizing musical sound.
  • Examining a Most Likely Case for Strong Campaign Effects: Hitler’s Speeches and the Rise of the Nazi Party, 1927–1933
    Hitler’s rise to power amidst an unprecedented propaganda campaign initiated scholarly interest in campaign effects. To the surprise of many, empirical studies often found minimal effects. The predominant focus of early work was on U.S. elections, though. Nazi propaganda as the archetypal and, in many ways, most likely case for strong effects has rarely been studied. We collect extensive data about Hitler’s speeches and gauge their impact on voter support at five national elections preceding the dictatorship. We use a semi-parametric difference-in-differences approach to estimate effects in the face of potential confounding due to the deliberate scheduling of events. Our findings suggest that Hitler’s speeches, while rationally targeted, had a negligible impact on the Nazis’ electoral fortunes. Only the 1932 presidential runoff, an election preceded by an extraordinarily short, intense and one-sided campaign, yielded positive effects. This study questions the importance of charismatic leaders for the success of populist movements.
  • A Man's Home is His Castle, But it Has a Secret Dungeon: Domestic Violence Victims Need an Amendment to Florida's All-Party Consent Law
    Domestic violence is an epidemic that is occurring at alarming rates throughout the state of Florida and across the nation. Much of that abuse occurs behind closed doors inside the home where there are no witnesses. Because Florida law does not allow a person to record communications without the consent of everyone else involved, victims are forced to rely on uncorroborated verbal accusations when they report their abuse. Unfortunately, it is difficult to prosecute these cases because they turn into credibility contests where the abuser often has an unfair advantage and has learned how to manipulate the system. If the abuse was serious enough, the victim can rely on visible physical injuries to support her allegations. That is also problematic because it forces victims to use their bodies as evidence when far more effective substitutes are available. This Note demonstrates that, although we claim domestic violence is no longer a private matter, we are effectively keeping it hidden behind closed doors by refusing to let victims record their abuse and then making it exceedingly difficult to prove their allegations without corroboration. The abuser’s right to privacy has become a priority over the victim’s safety. This Note argues that domestic violence victims need the ability to record the abuse they suffer inside the homes they share with their abusers. Finally, this Note proposes a statutory amendment to Florida’s all-party consent law that would achieve this goal.
  • The Unfulfillable Promise of Meritocracy: Three Lessons and their Implications for Justice in Education
    This paper draws on a literature in sociology, psychology and economics that has extensively documented the unfulfilled promise of meritocracy in education. I argue that the lesson learned from this literature is threefold: (1) educational institutions in practice significantly distort the ideal meritocratic process; (2) opportunities for merit are themselves determined by non-meritocratic factors; (3) any definition of merit must favor some groups in society while putting others at a disadvantage. Taken together, these conclusions give reason to understand meritocracy not just as an unfulfilled promise, but as an unfulfillable promise. Having problematized meritocracy as an ideal worth striving for, I argue that the pervasiveness of meritocratic policies in education threatens to crowd out as principles of justice, need and equality. As such, it may pose a barrier rather than a route to equality of opportunity. Furthermore, meritocratic discourse legitimates societal inequalities as justly deserved such as when misfortune is understood as personal failure. The paper concludes by setting a research agenda that asks how citizens come to hold meritocratic beliefs; addresses the persistence of (unintended) meritocratic imperfections in schools; analyzes the construction of a legitimizing discourse in educational policy; and investigates how education selects and labels winners and losers.
  • When Groups Fall Apart: Measuring Transnational Polarization with Twitter from the Arab Uprisings
    Scholars continue to disagree as to what extent international social connections act as a conduit to influence contentious politics within states. To answer this question, we provide the first rigorous and real-time measure of transnational ideological diffusion across sectarian groups by employing a novel statistical method and new data to capture the transnational dynamics of polarization after the Arab Uprisings of 2011. As authoritarian governments fell, populations in several states polarized between secularists and Islamists over what kind of regime was to replace the ousted one. To examine these endogenous processes, we collected a comprehensive dataset on elite and citizen Twitter accounts in Cairo and Alexandria (Egypt) and Tunis (Tunisia) for a ten-month period during the critical year of 2013. Given the difficulty in directly measuring polarization, we also developed a new model, item response theory-vector autoregression (IRT-VAR), that allows us to incorporate measurement uncertainty while providing over-time estimates of transnational polarization. We show through our model that following catalytic events like regime ousters (such as the military coup against the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt), we can separate the direct effects of these events on group polarization within a country from indirect transnational feedback happening through the channel of social media.
  • Attachment Styles and Parasocial Relationships: A Collectivist Society Perspective
    In this study we investigate parasocial relationships in media; more specifically we explore why audience members fashion attachments with television personalities. The study aligns with previous research in the area by Cole and Leets (1999) that looked at attachments formed with media figures and the correlation to level of attachments in real-life relationships. In their study, Cole and Leets (1999) used a three-dimensional attachment scale that included anxious-ambivalent, avoidant, and secure, and found those with higher insecurity or unstable real-life relationships have stronger parasocial relationships. We surveyed university age respondents and we used the same scales as Cole and Leets (1999) to examine whether in Kuwait, where dating violates social norms and looser bonds are found outside of the home, that stronger parasocial relationships with media personalities will be found because of the need to fulfill relationship needs outside of family. Our hypotheses in this chapter is that higher levels of anxious-ambivalents and avoidants both will be found due to the strict collectivist nature of the society forcing many to compensate for lack of real world relationships by forming mediated bonds. Moreover, we posited and discovered that that these two groups also showed the highest levels of parasocial relationships in our sample.
    Bengal was one of the leading producers of high-quality textile during the early modern centuries and played a very nodal role in the intra-Asian and global trade. After 1500, with the descending of the European traders on its shores, the cotton textile industry boomed. It accounted for nearly two-fifths of all textile exports to Europe from Asia. I attempt, in this essay, to understand the ‘Global Divergence’ debate in South Asia with a focus on Bengal and its trade and production in cotton textiles. I situate Bengal as a central region of cotton production and trade in the early modern global economy with regards to not only Europe but also to other parts of Asia and within the sub-continent itself. I reiterate Prasannan Parthasarathi’s contribution to the ‘Great Divergence’ debate to argue that Bengal hosted a thriving cotton textile industry deep into the late eighteenth century. I echo that the destruction of the textile industry occurred in the high days of colonialism in the latter half of the nineteenth century. I attempt to substantiate this by trying to understand Om Prakash’s analysis of the methods of procurement of production before and after the ascendency of the Europeans as political administratorsin Bengal; when production by weavers was market driven and when it was driven by coercion and impunity, respectively. I finally conclude by commenting on the limitation of this analysis and the further research scope it holds.
  • Բնակչության Ազգայնական-Պահպանողական Ընտրական Կողմնորոշումների Աշխարհագրական Առանձնահատկությունները Հայաստանի Հանրապետությունում
    Russian Abstract: Цель статьи выявление и интерпретация географических особенностей национально-консервативных электоральных предпочтений населения в Республике Армения. Для этого анализировалось структура политического пространства РА в 1998-2007 гг. и существование в этом пространстве политических сил разных идеологических ориентаций. В политическом пространстве РА как основные национал-консервативные силы приняв РПА и АРФ Дашнакцутюн, анализировалось итоги участия этих сил в парламентских и президентских выборах 1998-2007гг.В итоге с помощью сопоставления и пространство-временного анализа итогов парламентских и президентских выборов, автор пришел к выводу, что в РА от северо-запада республики (Ширак) к юго-востоку (Сюник) просматривается постепенное (градиентное) повышение уровня национально-консервативных электоральных предпочтений населения. English Abstract: This article aims to reveal and analyze the geographical features of nationalist-conservative electoral preferences of the population in the Republic of Armenia. For this purpose, the structure of the political landscape of Armenia in the period of 1998-2007 and the existence of political parties of various ideological orientations have been analyzed. In the paper, Republican Party of Armenia and ARF Dashnaktsutyun have been considered as the major nationalist-conservative political forces, and the voting for these parties during the parliamentary and presidential elections of 1998-2007 period has been elaborated. As a result of comparative and spatiotemporal analysis, the paper concludes that in Armenia there is a gradual increase of the level of nationalist-conservative electoral preferences of the population from the northwest (Shirak) to the southeast (Syunik) of the country.
  • Բնակչության Լիբերալ-Դեմոկրատական Ընտրական Կողմնորոշումների Ընդհանուր Աշխարհագրական Առանձնահատկությունները Հայաստանի Հանրապետությունում
    Russian Abstract: Цель статьи выявление и интерпретация географических особенностей либерально-демократических электоральных предпочтений населения в Республике Армения. Для этого анализировалось структура политического пространства РА в 1998-2008гг. и существование в этом пространстве политических сил разных идеологических ориентаций. Для выявления географических особенностей либерально-демократических электоральных предпочтений населения, анализировалось результаты участия либерально-демократических политических сил (партий и кандидатов) в президентских и парламентских выборах последнего десятилетия. В итоге с помощью сопоставления и пространство-временного анализа итогов парламентских и президентских выборов, автор пришел к выводу, что в РА при голосовании за либерально-демократических политических сил существует раскол 'север-юг' при котором население северных регионов (марзов) голосует преимущественно за либерально-демократических политических сил, а население южных регионов голосует преимущественно за национально-консервативных политических сил. English Abstract: The purpose of this article is to reveal and analyze the general geographical features of liberal-democratic electoral preferences of the population in the Republic of Armenia, therefore, the structure of political landscape of RA for 1998-2008 period and the existence of political forces with different ideological orientation in this landscape has been analyzed. In order to reveal the geographical features of liberal-democratic electoral preferences of the population, the voting for liberal-democratic political forces at presidential and parliamentary elections of the last decade have been analyzed. As a result of the comparative and spatiotemporal analysis, the papers concludes that in RA in the voting for liberal-democratic political forces there is a north-south 'cleavage', namely the population of northern regions votes mainly for liberal-democratic political forces, while the population of the southern regions mainly votes for national-conservative ones.
  • Ընտրությունները Հայաստանի Հանրապետությունում: Աշխարհագրական Վերլուծություն
    Armenian abstract: Գրքում հայ իրականության մեջ առաջին անգամ ընտրությունների աշխարհագրությունը ներկայացվում է որպես գիտության ինքնուրույն ճյուղ, որը զբաղվում է ընտրական գործընթացների տարածքային կազմակերպման հիմնահարցերով: Վերլուծվում է մեր հանրապետությունում ընտրությունների ընդհանուր աշխարհագրական առանձնահատկությունները, ընտրական պրոցեսների վրա այնպիսի աշխարհագրական գործոնների ազդեցությունը, ինչպիսիք են` ուրբանիզացիան, տարաբնակեցման կառուցվածքը, սոցիալ-տնտեսական պայմանների տարածքային անհամամասնությունները և այլն: Գիրքը կարող է օգտակար լինել ոչ միայն աշխարհագետների, այլ նաև քաղաքագիտության, սոցիոլոգիայի և այլ ոլորտների մասնագետների համար: Այն կարող է նաև օգտակար լինել բոլոր նրանց համար, ովքեր հետաքրքրված են մեր հանրապետությունում ընթացող քաղաքական և ընտրական երևույթներով: English Abstract: This book, for the first time in Armenian experience, presents Electoral Geography as an independent scientific branch, engaged in exploring the territorial organization of the electoral process. In the book the general geographical features of the elections in our republic, the influence on the electoral process of such geographical factors as urbanization, spatial distribution of settlements, spatial allocation of socio-economic conditions, etc., are analyzed. This book can be useful not only for geographers, but also for the specialists of Political science, Sociology, etc. It can also be useful for all those who are interested in the political and electoral phenomena in our republic.
  • Genetics and Education: Recent developments in the context of an ugly history and an uncertain future
    Driven by our recent mapping of the human genome, genetics research is increasingly prominent and likely to re-intersect with education research. We describe the ways in which these fields have previously intersected, focusing specifically on the reasons such intersections were harmful. We then discuss the ways in which genetics research differs in the current era, focusing specifically on possibilities deriving from the availability of molecular genetic data and the proliferation of genome-wide association studies. We discuss both promises and pitfalls resulting from the convergence of molecular genetic research and education research. The floodgates of genetic data have opened. Collaboration between those in the social and hard sciences; open conversation among policy makers, educators, and researchers; and public engagement will all prove critical for enacting regulations and research designs that emphasize equity.
  • The Unfulfillable Promise of Meritocracy: Three Lessons and Their Implications for Justice in Education
  • What Do Books in the Home Proxy For? A Cautionary Tale
    In studies of educational achievement, students' self-reported number of books in the family home is a frequently used proxy for social, cultural, and economic background. Absent hard evidence about what this variable captures or how well, its use has been motivated by strong associations with student outcomes. I show that these associations rest on two types of endogeneity: low achievers accrue fewer books, and are also prone to underestimate their number. The conclusion is substantiated both by comparing reports by students and their parents, and by the fact that girls report on average higher numbers despite being similar to boys on other measures of social background. The endogenous bias is large enough to overturn classical attenuation bias; it distorts cross-country patterns and invalidates many common study designs. These findings serve as a caution against overreliance on standard regression assumptions and contribute to ongoing debates about the empirical robustness of social science.
  • The Tell-Tale Hat: Surfacing the Uncertainty in Folklore Classification
  • Tuning in to God: Authorizing religious discourse in Jordanian Islamic advice radio programmes
    Sound and spoken language play a major role in contemporary Islamic mass media, particularly due to the religious relevance of audition in inducing ethical behaviour. On Islamic advice programmes in Jordan, a genre of radio show in which listeners call in to the station in order to pose questions regarding pious Sunni Muslim lifestyles, broadcasters use specific linguistic strategies to authorize their spoken responses as derived from the Islamic textual tradition, and therefore legitimate advice for individuals seeking to enhance their piety. Through manipulating register, quotative frames, and persona performance, broadcasters entextualize segments of language and develop dialogical relationships with absent discourses – principally, the Islamic religious texts of the Qur’an and the hadith literature – as well as addressed audiences and co- present callers. Though the programmes provide a forum for public discussion of religious issues, a linguistic anthropological analysis nevertheless reveals the persistent asymmetry and exclusion inherent in this type of mediated interaction: hosts remain supremely authoritative dispensers of advice to lay callers, and the programme’s audience is idealized as a pious public from which non-devout individuals are excluded. Details of communicative interaction must, therefore, be given careful attention when examining the role of religious mass media.
  • Regional Economic Development
    This paper is an analysis of one major local economic development policy in New York City. NYCEDC (New York City Economic Development Corporation) recently is implementing a program “UrbanTech NYC” to support entrepreneurs and innovators to help them find solutions for challenging problems in sectors of energy, transportation, water, waste, and agriculture in the city. UrbanTech NYC provides shared spaces and resources, equipment, pilot opportunities, prototyping, and learning opportunities to let these entrepreneurs and innovators being innovative in smart technologies. They provide two hubs, one in Manhattan, and one in Brooklyn with over 100,000 square feet of affordable and flexible space along with prototyping and piloting equipment. The paper also identifies three other policy options that New York City can adopt and implement instead of the current policy option. They briefly include maintaining the status que, providing tax incentives to big established well-known companies, and investing in implementation and provisions of smart infrastructure to attract entrepreneurs and firms to create a smart industry cluster in the city. Each of these policy options have positive and negative aspects that will be discussed in details through the paper. In addition, this paper provides an evaluation of the current policy option accompanying by alternative policy options. The paper will be concluded that the preferred policy is the current policy. The current policy, “UrbanTech NYC”, is a novel platform for new entrepreneurs and innovators that aligns with other simultaneous policies and programs in New York that together they can be successful in their goals. Since these new policies try to deal with newly identified problems in the city with novel solutions and perspective, they are actively involved in knowledge spillover and information, reducing regulatory burdens on entrepreneurs, so they are worth trying.
  • A Standard for the Scholarly Citation of Archaeological Data as an Incentive to Data Sharing
    How do archaeologists share their research data, if at all? We review what data are, according to current influential definitions, and previous work on the benefits, costs and norms of data sharing in the sciences broadly. To understand data sharing in archaeology, we present the results of three pilot studies: requests for data by email; review of data availability in published articles, and analysis of archaeological datasets deposited in repositories. We find that archaeologists are often willing to share, but discipline-wide sharing is patchy and ad hoc. Legislation and mandates are effective at increasing data-sharing, but editorial policies at journals lack adequate enforcement. Although most of data available at repositories are licensed to enable flexible reuse, only a small proportion of the data are stored in structured formats for easy reuse. We present some suggestions for improving the state of date sharing in archaeology, among these is a standard for citing data sets to ensure that researchers making their data publicly available receive appropriate credit.
  • Some Cautionary Tales About Collective Licensing
    Collective licensing occurs where a single agent is empowered to license uses on behalf of many individual copyright holders. Agents can be empowered voluntarily, with copyright holders opting in to permit licensing of their works, or they can be established or empowered by statute. Collective licensing has been suggested as a possible solution for the obstacle copyright law places in the path of new uses of works enabled by innovative technologies. Collective licensing does have the potential to reduce transaction costs when a large number of works are licensed to a large number of users, thereby benefiting both rightsholders and users. However, the track record of collective organizations (CROs), the entities that manage collective licenses, reveals that they often fail to live up to that potential. Although there are a wide variety of CROs operating under divergent legal frameworks, many unfortunately share the characteristic of serving their own interests at the expense of artists and the public. In discussions of copyright policy, lawmakers generally consider two broad stakeholder groups: authors on the one hand and the general public on the other. This paper will examine how CROs have done significant harm to each of the groups they are supposed to help.
  • Voices from the far right: a text analysis of Swedish parliamentary debates
    In this paper we study the effects of a radical right party entering a national parliament, on the parliament discourse. We follow the classification developed by Meguid (2008) and use a probabilistic topic model approach to analyze the 300,000 speeches delivered in the Swedish parliament between 1994 and 2017. Our results indicate that immigration became a more prevalent topic in party leader debates when the Sweden Democrats entered the parliament in 2010. The other parties started to address immigration more, but still not to the extent that the Sweden Democrats did. In 2015, as Sweden faced a migration crisis, immigration became a more salient issue in the parliamentary debates. This could be seen as an external shock that forced the mainstream parties to put more emphasis on the topic of immigration. We conclude that the mainstream parties used a partly dismissive, partly adversarial strategy in their speeches when the SD entered the parliament. The migration crises in 2015 made them focus more on immigration and they thereby adopted a more adversarial strategy.
  • Trust and Fertility Dynamics
  • Multi-district preference modeling
    Generating realistic artificial preference distributions is an important part of any simulation analysis of electoral systems. While this has been discussed in some detail in the context of a single electoral district, many electoral systems of interest are based on multiple districts. Neither treating preferences between districts as independent nor ignoring the district structure yields satisfactory results. We present a model based on a multi-urn extension of the classic Eggenberger-Polya urn, in which each district is represented by an urn and there is correlation between urns. We show in detail that this procedure has a small number of tunable parameters, is computationally efficient, and produces ``realistic-looking" distributions. We present applications to retrospective analysis and forecasting of real elections, and intend to use the methodology to help set optimal parameters for electoral systems.
  • Deprivation or Discrimination? Comparing Theories of the Reverse Income-Obesity Gradient in the U.S. and South Korea
    In high-income countries, poverty is often associated with higher average body mass index (BMI). To account for this reverse gradient, deprivation theories posit that declining economic resources make it more difficult to maintain a healthy weight. By contrast, discrimination theories argue that anti-fat discrimination in hiring and marriage sorts heavier individuals into lower-income households. We assess competing predictions of these theories by examining how household income in representative samples from South Korea (2007–2014, N=20,823) and the U.S. (1999–2014, N=6,395) is related to BMI in two key contrasting groups: (1) currently married and (2) never married individuals. Naïve analyses that aggregate these two groups reveal the well-established reverse gradient. Stratified analyses, on the other hand, reveal that the gradient only appears among currently married women, but not never-married women or men. Further analyses indicated that these differences in the gradient by marital status cannot be accounted for a number of alternative hypothesis based on differential employment or motivation to lose weight. Though consistent with predictions of anti-fat discrimination in marriage, these findings raise important challenges to deprivation theories of the reverse gradient.
  • How socioeconomic and institutional conditions at the household level shape the environmental effectiveness of governmental PES: China’s Sloping Land Conversion Program
    As the world's largest Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES) program, China’s Sloping Land Conversion Program (SLCP) is designed to combat soil erosion and ongoing land degradation by converting crop land on steep slopes into forests. Operating through an incentive-based approach, the SLCP involved 32 million rural households as the core agents for program implementation. In this paper, we aim to fill a research gap regarding the condition for environmental effectiveness at the household level. In particular, we analyzed how institutional and socio-economic conditions influence rural households to reach the primary environmental goals. Based on a broad literature review, we analyzed relevant conditions based on 59 interviews with SLCP participants at the household level to combine these data with field-observed evaluation of the environmental effects on enrolled plots. Using fuzzy-set Qualitative Comparative Analysis (fsQCA), our results show that the pathway to environmental success or failure at the household level has been shaped by local institutional and socio-economic conditions in a combinatory manner. As the key components of successful pathways, the combination of household involvement and effective monitoring plays a fundamental role. However, in the absence of certain conditions, the environmental effectiveness of SLCP may be in danger. Based on our result, we discuss the potentials and shortcomings of using short-term governmental PES to realize long-term environmental effects.
  • Policy Options to Streamline the Carbon Market for Agricultural Nitrous Oxide Emissions
    The majority of nitrous oxide emissions- a potent greenhouse gas- are from agricultural sources, particularly nitrogen fertilizer applications. A growing focus on these emission sources has led to the development of carbon offset protocols that could enable payment to farmers for reducing fertilizer use or implementing other nitrogen management strategies. Despite the development of several protocols, the current regional scope is narrow, adoption by farmers is low, and policy implementation of protocols has a significant time lag. Here we utilize existing research and policy structures to propose an “umbrella” approach for nitrogen management greenhouse gas emissions protocols for carbon markets that has the potential to streamline the policy implementation and acceptance of protocols. We suggest that the umbrella protocol could set forth standard definitions common across multiple protocol options, and then “modules” could be further developed as scientific evidence advances. Modules could be developed for specific crops, regions, and practices. We identify a policy process that could facilitate this development in concert with emerging scientific research and conclude by acknowledging potential benefits and limitations of the approach.
  • Attitudes Toward Predators and Conservancies Among Namibian Farmers
    Conservancies provide the opportunity for land-occupiers to manage natural resources in a collaborative, sustainable, and profitable manner. Human–wildlife conflict, however, has limited their success due to the financial loss of crops, livestock and game by certain wildlife species. Questionnaires (n = 147) were conducted in five conservancies and four resettled farms in Namibia to determine the attitudes toward predators and conservancy membership. Attitudes were significantly affected by perceived depredation and when respondents asked for help to reduce predation. Attitudes toward predators and conservancies were more positive when individuals perceived they received benefits from both. Improving livestock husbandry practices in conjunction with increasing tangible benefits of predators and conservancies may improve the attitudes of rural communities, leading to an increase in the viability of integrated carnivore conservation and rural development in sub-Saharan Africa.
  • Regional Economic Analysis of Mecklenburg County, NC
    Located in the state of North Carolina, Mecklenburg county is among the ten fastest growing counties in the Unites States (Carmen et al., 2010). As of 2010 census data the population of the county is 919,628, with an estimated population of 1,034,070 in 2015. The city of Charlotte, that covers the most area of Mecklenburg county, is the largest city in NC with close to 700,000 residents, and the seventeenth largest city in the US. Mecklenburg county is part of the NC-SC Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) of Charlotte, Concord, Gastonia. 546 square miles (1,410 km2) of Mecklenburg county is land and 22 square miles (57 km2) is water (US Census Bureau). Adjacent counties include: Iredell county, Cabarrus county, Union county, Gaston county, Catawba county, Lincoln county, Lancaster county (SC), and York county (SC). Charlotte is home of a large banking industry and several Fortune 500 companies (Carmen et al., 2010). The banking industry makes Charlotte the second largest financial center in the US after New York and has one of the highest median wages in the region (Kozar, 2010). Another large industry in Charlotte is finance, insurance, and real estate, and the headquarters of several national corporations located in Charlotte (Bacot, 2008). Five Fortune 500 Companies that have their headquarters in Mecklenburg County are: Bank of America, Nucor, Sonic Automotive, Duke Energy, and Family Dollar (Dollar Tree) (Fortune, 2016). Education is another large economic sector in North Carolina due to having the largest public school system and a regional state university in this area (Bacot, 2008); these schools include: UNC Charlotte, Davidson College, Queens University, Johnson & Wales University, Wake Forest University (School of Business) Charlotte Center, Johnson C. Smith University, Southern Evangelical Seminary, Central Piedmont Community College, and Belmont Abbey College. Other large employers in Mecklenburg county are Charlotte Mecklenburg Hospital, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education, Wells Fargo Bank (A Corp), Bank of America, and US Air Inc (NC Department of Commerce, 2015, 4th quarter). Charlotte-Douglas International Airport is the main airport in the region that is the 5th busiest airport in the nation in 2015, and the 6th busiest in the world (Portillo, 2016). This airport is the hub for US Airways and American Airlines that have been merged in 2013, to become the second busiest hub for the combined carrier (Portillo, 2015). Charlotte, like other parts of the US, has been affected by the economic recession that started in 2007. Many job losses and unemployment expanded in all sectors of the economy. The banking industry that was the largest industry in the region was specifically affected by the recession, leaving the region with high unemployment (NC Department of Commerce, 2015, 4th quarter). However, one of the strongest assets of Charlotte economy is its diversity of employment, that even at the time of distress, would sustain its economy (Kozar, 2010).
  • Do Survey Measures of Racial Prejudice Predict Racial Discrimination? Experimental Evidence on Anti-Black Discrimination
    Scholars regularly measure whites’ racial attitudes using symbolic racism and, more rarely, overt prejudice. We examine the predictive power of both measures in explaining anti-black discrimination. In Study 1 we obtain a behavioral measure of racial discrimination using the Ultimatum Game (UG). We find that white responders engaged in costly discrimination against black proposers by rejecting offers they would otherwise accept from whites. Overt prejudice predicts which whites discriminate whereas symbolic racism does not. In Study 2, white third-party observers evaluate intergroup interactions in the UG, and overt prejudice predicts racially biased evaluations of the fairness of resource distributions made by black proposers to white responders, but symbolic racism does not. Finally, we re-analyze a published candidate choice experiment and find that overt prejudice predicts discrimination against a black candidate, relative to an otherwise equivalent white one. These results demonstrate the enduring importance of overt prejudice in American politics.
  • Qualitative Data Sharing: Data Repositories and Academic Libraries as Key Partners in Addressing Challenges
    Data sharing is increasingly perceived to be beneficial to knowledge production, and is therefore increasingly required by federal funding agencies, private funders, and journals. As qualitative researchers are faced with new expectations to share their data, data repositories and academic libraries are working to address the specific challenges of qualitative research data. This paper describes how data repositories and academic libraries can partner with researchers to support three challenges associated with qualitative data sharing: (1) obtaining informed consent from participants for data sharing and scholarly reuse; (2) ensuring that qualitative data are legally and ethically shared; and (3) sharing data that cannot be deidentified. This paper also describes three continuing challenges of qualitative data sharing that data repositories and academic libraries cannot specifically address—research using qualitative big data, copyright concerns, and risk of decontextualization. While data repositories and academic libraries can’t provide easy solutions to these three continuing challenges, they can partner with researchers and connect them with other relevant specialists to examine these challenges. Ultimately, this paper suggests that data repositories and academic libraries can help researchers address some of the challenges associated with ethical and lawful qualitative data sharing.
  • Pohnpei sohte ehu: A survey- and interview-based approached to language attitudes on Pohnpei
    This dissertation provides an analysis of language attitudes of 1.3% of the adult population of the island of Pohnpei in the Federated States of Micronesia. It presents both quantitative survey and qualitative interview data collected July–August 2016 and July–August 2017. The results are situated within a poststructuralist, postcolonial theoretical framework that critically evaluates the colonial history of the island and its ideological effects on language use, as well as highlighting the diversity of opinions found on the island. Because of this framework, the dissertation does not aim to construct a monolithic narrative of language attitudes on Pohnpei, but rather seeks diversity wherever possible. To carry out these goals, the dissertation adapts quantitative methods (multidimensional scaling, cluster analyses, correspondence analysis, and poststratified Bayesian generalized hierarchical modeling) and combines them with critical theoretical tools such as sociolinguistic scale and translanguaging. The results showed two main different ideological groups both in terms of language use and language attitude patterns. Both groups highly value Pohnpeian, English, and other local languages generally. However, the first group values English over Pohnpeian and other local languages. They in general only use Pohnpeian to connect with Pohnpeians and in situations related to the soupeidi system, but use English for most other situations including education, work, media, and government. This group’s language use patterns with scale-based language ideologies, where local levels of scale (such as family and kousapw) are highly multilingual, but become increasingly monolingual as scale increases toward the translocal level. The other group, conversely, finds Pohnpeian to be the most important language for them overall and tend to find Pohnpeian to be the most important language in every domain. The results of the dissertation indicate a disconnect between the current mostly monolingual English-focused educational practices among both private and public schools on Pohnpei and the desire of the research participants for greater use of Pohnpeian and other local languages. The current educational system likewise devalues the symbolic resources of its students, which has perpetuated negative ideologies about local languages. These ideologies adversely affect both the students and the linguistic future of local languages including Pohnpeian.
  • Social Media Usage: The Impact on Feelings of Depression or Loneliness
    Over the past decade, there has been a rapid growth of social media. Much of the problem lies with the new potential for constant social comparisons. Social media also adds a new layer of interaction that can occur anywhere, at any time, with anyone. This allows for a higher quantity of relationships, but strips the depth of these relationships. Does increased social media use affect quality of life? I hypothesize that the more social media sites a respondent is a member or regular user of, the more time he or she reports feeling depressed or lonely. I used a sample of 628 respondents as part of in-person interviews conducted by the 2016 General Social Survey. The results found that overall about 51 percent of the people claimed to feel depressed or lonely none of the time. Meaning that about half of respondents do feel depressed or lonely at least some of the time. The most statistically significant finding revealed that the higher ones income, the less one reports feeling depressed or lonely. However, the hypothesis must be rejected because there is no statistical significance between social media usage and quality of life. Social media site usage does not result in increased feelings of depression or loneliness. Based on the income results, does money buy happiness? Those of lower socio-economic class may not have access to proper medical care and therefore do not get adequate treatment for mental illnesses. Structural forces might be having a direct impact.
  • On the Sociodynamics of Choice and Group Stability: A Bridge Over the Micro/Macro Divide
    This paper explores a sociological problem born of the following axioms: 1) Individuals, their circumstances and their interactions are heterogeneous and subject to constant change; 2) Individuals and their interactions make up groups; 3) Groups are normally very stable, lacking change. After defining social stability and reviewing current rational choice theorizing, this paper contends that neither past nor current sociological thinking sufficiently explains how social stability can come from the arbitrariness of individual interactions. It then posits that all choices have accompanying ‘entrained' choices, subsumed to conscious decision-making, one being for ‘predictability’; a ubiquitous yet useful characteristic of sociodynamics that addresses the problem above in a testable, falsifiable way, and could be a sociological ‘constant’ for use in further research.
  • Understanding the human dimensions of coexistence between carnivores and people: A case study in Namibia
    Many carnivore populations were in decline throughout much of the 20th century, but due to recent conservation policies, their numbers are stabilising or even increasing in some areas of the world. This, compounded with human population growth, has caused increased livestock depredation by carnivores, which threatens farmer livelihoods, particularly those in developing countries such as Namibia. How to resolve this so-called “conflict” between carnivores and livestock farmers remains challenging, in part because some mitigation strategies have proven somewhat ineffective or unacceptable. By using a case-study approach on the commercial farmlands of northcentral Namibia, I aimed to understand the complexity of the human dimensions affecting coexistence between carnivores and people in an unprotected working landscape.
  • Social Science Methods to Study Human–Cheetah Interactions
    We are living in a new geological era – the Anthropocene - so called because of humanity’s far-reaching effects on the environment. As our population grows, threats towards biodiversity, including those associated with human-cheetah conflict, also increase. Social science research enables conservationists to understand and address the human dimensions of these challenges. This chapter describes common social science paradigms, theories, methodologies, methods and sampling strategies useful for studying human-cheetah interactions, as these types of studies are lacking. We explain the advantages and disadvantages of these methods, ethical and practical considerations, and use existing or comparable examples to highlight their use in cheetah research and conservation. Social science methods can be challenging to conduct, so we advise the importance for cheetah ecologists and practitioners to collaborate with social science experts.
  • Perceived efficacy of livestock-guarding dogs in South Africa: Implications for cheetah conservation
    Large wild carnivore predation on domestic livestock and the associated financial losses may increase efforts toward lethal control of carnivore populations. Livestock‐guarding dogs could provide an effective alternative to such lethal control by mitigating depredation losses. Although this information is available in North America, the cost‐effectiveness of guarding dogs has not been studied in other areas experiencing large carnivore depredation such as South Africa, where the socio‐economic context is very different from that of North America. We assessed the costs and benefits of 97 livestock‐guarding dogs working on 94 farms in South Africa between 2005 and 2011 by reviewing data collected from questionnaires on perceived depredation losses prior to and during guarding dog placement, rates of guarding dog behavioral problems, removals, and pre‐senile mortality.
  • A Call for Conservation Scientists to Empirically Study the Effects of Human Population Policies on Biodiversity Loss
    The world is changing more quickly now than it ever has before, predominantly due to our large consumption rates and population size. Despite this epoch being well-accepted as the “Anthropocene”, it is surprising that there is still a lack of willingness by many conservation scientists to engage with the consequences of human population dynamics on biodiversity. We highlight the importance of addressing the effects of our population abundance, density and growth rate on conservation and note that environmental organisations are beginning to embrace this problem but the take-up amongst conservation researchers to empirically study their effect on biodiversity is slow. We argue that the lack of published research may partly be because the topic is still considered taboo. We therefore urge conservation scientists to direct more of their research efforts on this issue, particularly to examples that highlight the effects of Population, Health and Environment (PHE) projects and female education initiatives on biodiversity.
  • Do Millennials care about NPOs? Intergenerational differences in attitudes towards nonprofit organizations
    In this study, we analyze whether there are differences in attitudes towards nonprofit organizations (NPOs) between the generational cohorts of Baby Boomers, Generation X, and Millennials. We do so by analyzing survey data from Switzerland in two steps, a Bayesian estimation as well as a cluster analysis. The overall results suggest that there are, at best, only few and small intergenerational differences: The only consistent effect we find are the more negative attitudes of the Baby Boomer cohort towards professional associations and towards sports NPOs, but those differences could be due to life cycle rather than intergenerational effects. Overall, our results suggest that the Millennial generational cohort is at least as interested in and willing to engage with NPOs as previous generational cohorts.
  • Dalits and Federalism - A Study of Public Opinion on Federalism
    Dalit movement, along with Janajati and Madhesi movements, has been a major force in political and social transformation in Nepal since 1990. Federalism, one of the demands of such transformations, has become a contentious issue for Dalits. Dalit leaders had initially mostly been centered on ensuring proportional representation in central and local governments, along with special rights as a compensation for their historical oppression (Bhattachan 2008). However, after the Peoples’ Movement of 2006, with Janajatis and Madhesis demanding provinces along ethnic and regional lines, Dalit leaders and scholars began to discuss the relevance of federalism for Dalits as well as possibility of their own Dalit province. This issue climaxed with State Restructuring High Commission Report suggesting provision of a non-territorial province for Dalits. But is a Dalit province, or federalism, needed for Dalits? Is the issue of federalism and Dalit province an aspiration, or a concern, of common Dalits? Or is it just an interest of Dalit leaders and elites? This paper tries to analyse public opinion of Dalits, based on a survey of public opinion in two VDCs of Nepal, on the various issues related to federalism, including aspirations of Dalits in the proposed constitution and perceptions of Dalits on successive political movements and government provisions for Dalits since 1990.
  • Waste collection in rural communities: challenges under EU regulations; a case study of Neamt County, Romania
    The paper aims to examine the changes in the rural waste management sector at regional scale since the Romania adhesion to the EU in 2007. Traditional waste management based on the mixed waste collection and waste disposal often on improper sites prevailed in municipal waste management options of transitional economies across the globe. The lack of formal waste collection services in rural areas has encouraged the open dumping or backyard burning. The paper analyses the improvements and challenges of local authorities in order to fulfill the new EU requirements in this sector supported by data analysis at local administrative unit levels and field observations. Geographical analysis is compulsory in order to reveal the local disparities. The paper performs an assessment of waste collection issues across 78 rural municipalities within Neamt County. This sector is emerging in rural areas of Eastern Europe, but is far from an efficient municipal waste management system based on the waste hierarchy concept.
  • Rural plastic emissions into the largest mountain lake of the Eastern Carpathians
    The lack of proper waste collection systems leads to plastic pollution in rivers in proximity to rural communities. This environmental threat is more widespread among mountain communities which are prone to frequent flash floods during the warm season. This paper estimates the amounts of plastic bottles dumped into the Izvoru Muntelui lake by upstream rural communities. The plastic pollution dimension between seasonal floods which affected the Bistrita catchment area during 2005-2012 is examined. The floods dumped over 290 tonnes of plastic bottles into the lake. Various scenarios are tested in order to explain each amount of plastic waste collected by local authorities during sanitation activities. The results show that rural municipalities are responsible for 85.51% of total plastic bottles collected during 2005-2010. The source of plastic pollution is mainly local. The major floods of July 2008 and June 2010 collected most of the plastic bottles scattered across the Bistrita river catchment (56 villages) and dumped them into the lake. These comparisons validate the proposed method as a reliable tool in the assessment process of river plastic pollution, which may also be applied in other geographical areas. Tourism and leisure activities are also found to be responsible for plastic pollution in the study area. A new regional integrated waste management system should improve the waste collection services across rural municipalities at the county level when it is fully operational. This paper demonstrates that rural communities are significant contributors of plastics into water bodies.
  • An Exploratory Study on Students’ Reading Interest Development through Independent Reading-Retelling Activity
    Reading interest, in addition to reading skills, is crucial for students if they want to be successful readers. The condition of low reading interest among students has been a major issue that needs a creative follow-up from scholars, teachers and practitioners. This study aims to explore the development of students’ reading interest in relation to their participation in independent reading-retelling activity as part of independent learning activity in a particular course they took. Seventy-five students from Faculty and Teacher Training Education of Universitas Lambung Mangkurat, Indonesia, were involved as the participants in this study. The students took part in independent reading-retelling activity which requires them to read novels and short stories and retell it to as well as do sharing session to discuss the stories with their partners. This activity was done out of course schedule and complemented with a journal entry to track the students’ progress. Without the purpose of assessing the students, the activity was intended to give students meaningful reading experience and to grow their reading interest. The encouragement of the lecturer was regularly given to the students to keep up their reading and retelling. A questionnaire was used to collect data on their reading interest and their perception on the influence they feel from the activity. This study showed that the students’ reading interest was at medium level with several positive reading behaviors. From the students’ perception, the activity has given them positive influence on their vocabulary growth, reading comprehension, self-quality development, and reading interest.
  • Do voters benchmark economic performance?
    The conventional theory of economic voting is that voters reward or punish the incumbent government based on how the domestic economy is doing. Recently, scholars have challenged that view, arguing that voters use relative assessments to gauge government performance. From this perspective, what matters is not how well the national economy is doing per se, but rather how it performs relative to an international or historical reference point. This article revisits prominent published works in that emerging tradition, and finds that the available evidence does not support the benchmarking hypothesis. We come to this conclusion after taking a close look at the regression models that are typically used to test benchmarking. We show algebraically that the way in which those models are specified invites a fundamental misreading of the evidence. Finally, we propose an alternative regression equation which can be used to test benchmarking, avoids common misinterpretations, and allows us to assess complex, conditional theories of relative evaluation.
  • From privilege to prevalence: contextual effects of women's schooling on African marital timing
    In Africa and elsewhere, educated women tend to marry later than their less educated peers. Beyond being an attribute of individual women, education is also an aggregate phenomenon: the social meaning of a woman’s educational attainment depends on the educational attainments of her agemates. Using data from 30 countries and 246 birth cohorts across sub-Saharan Africa, we investigate the impact of educational context (the percent of women in a country cohort who ever attended school) on the relationship between a woman’s own educational attainment and her marital timing. In contexts where access to education is prevalent, the marital timing of uneducated and highly-educated women is more similar than it is in contexts where attending school is limited to a privileged minority. This across-country convergence is driven by no-education women marrying later in high-education contexts, especially through lower rates of very early marriages. However, within countries over time, the marital ages of women from different educational groups tend to diverge as educational access expands. This within-country divergence is most often driven by later marriage among highly-educated women, although some countries’ divergence is driven by earlier marriage among women who never attended school.
  • Distributive justice and equity in transportation
    pre-print of paper published in the journal Transport Reviews. Pereira, R. H. M., Schwanen, T., Banister, D. (2017). Distributive justice and equity in transportation. Transport Reviews, 37(2), 1–22. doi:10.1080/01441647.2016.1257660
  • Common dimensions for poverty and wealth attributions
    The theory of attributions has a long tradition in studying explanations for the origin of poverty. Nevertheless, research regarding the perceived causes of wealth has been so far sidelined and not related to the study of poverty attributions. This paper focuses on the relationship between poverty and wealth attributions from a latent variable measurement perspective, for which it considers two basic attribution types: internal (based on individual behavior) and external (based on socio-structural determinants). The data comes from a 10-indicator scale from the national representative survey “Social Justice and Citizenship Participation”, applied in Chile in 2013 (N=1.245). Based in previous exploratory and confirmatory studies, a factorial confirmatory model for internal and external attributions of both poverty an wealth was estimated (four factors), based on which a second order two-factor confirmatory model was estimated, one for internal and one for external attributions, for both poverty and wealth. The results show for the first time evidence of common attributional dimensions for poverty and wealth.
  • A model for U.S. tornado casualties involving interaction between damage path estimates of population density and energy dissipation
    A recent study showed the importance of tornado energy as a factor in a model for tornado deaths and injuries (casualties). The model was additive under the assumption of uniform threat. Here we test two explicit hypotheses designed to examine this additive assumption. The first hypothesis concerns energy dissipation's effect conditional on population density and the second concerns population's effect conditional on energy. Both hypotheses are tested using a regression model that contains the product of population density and energy dissipation. Results show that the elasticity of casualties with respect to energy dissipation increases with population density. That is, the percentage increase in casualties with increasing energy dissipation {\it increases} with population density. Similarly, the elasticity of casualties with respect to population density increases with energy dissipation. That is, the percentage increase in casualties with increasing population density {\it increases} with energy dissipation. Allowing energy and population elasticities to be conditional rather than constant provides a more complete description of how tornado casualties are influenced by these two important factors.
  • Conceptual Overlap between Stimuli Increases Misattribution of Internal Experience
    People make sense of their internal experiences by attributing them to objects (I am excited because he is here). This attribution decision influences one’s opinion of the object (I like him). Misattribution occurs when the internal experience is triggered by one object (a prime), but attributed to another (a target). The present research used the Affect Misattribution Procedure to examine the role of conceptual overlap between the prime and the target in attribution of valenced internal experiences. We argue that the valence of the internal experience does not enter the attribution process alone, but is rather accompanied by semantic properties related to the object that generated the experience. Consequently, we predicted that misattribution would occur more when prime and target are conceptually similar. Four experiments supported that prediction, using diverse primes and targets. The results suggest that the semantic properties of the internal experience help guide the attribution process.
  • Separating Spheres
    The authors investigated whether trends in attitudes about gender were consistent with the gender stall primarily occurring in the family domain and examined potential mechanisms associated with changing gender norms. Using data from Monitoring the Future surveys (1976–2015), the authors assessed three components of trends in youth’s beliefs about gender: the marketplace, the family, and mothers’ employment. Findings showed continued increases in egalitarianism from 1976 through the mid-1990s across all three dimensions. Thereafter, support for egalitarianism in the public sphere plateaued at high levels, rising support for mothers’ employment persisted at a slower pace, and conventional ideology about gender in families returned. The changing demographic composition of American high school students did not account for the gender attitude trends. Youth’s mothers’ employment and increased education were related to increased egalitarianism. Changes in population averages of mothers’ employment and educational attainment were only weakly associated with increases in egalitarian attitudes.
  • Scotland’s Poetics of Space: An Experiment in Geospatial Semantics
    This paper reports on a collaborative project that develops new applications of spatial text analysis. We offer a methodology to identify and evaluate correlations between semantic and geographic distance in a printed corpus. Our work combines geographic information science (GIS) with corpus linguistics to study how places are described, how spatial categories coalesce and change, and how patterns in language correlate with patterns in geography. At its base, we'll argue, geospatial text analysis blends two key theoretical concepts. In GIS, the principle of "spatial autocorrelation" holds that nearby places tend to have similar characteristics at similar times. In computational semantics, the "distributional hypothesis" suggests that words with similar meanings tend to appear near each other in documents. Taken together, these hypotheses form a single idea: similar places at similar times tend to be described using similar words. To put this idea into action, we propose a data structure — the word-place matrix — that indexes a corpus to geographical features. Over a word-place matrix, measurements of word association are simultaneously measurements of spatial overlap. In just the same way that terms in a corpus can be gathered into conceptual groups, words in a word-place matrix can be associated with corresponding geographical regions. This very simple data format offers an easy-to-implement and theoretically well-grounded method for studying cultural topics with strong spatial components.
  • Status Threat, Material Interests, and the 2016 Presidential Vote
    The April 2018 article of Diana Mutz, “Status Threat, Not Economic Hardship, Explains the 2016 Presidential Vote,” was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and contradicts prior sociological research on the 2016 election. Mutz’s article received widespread media coverage because of the strength of its primary conclusion, declaimed in its title. The current article is a critical reanalysis of the models offered by Mutz, using the data files released along with her article. Contrary to her conclusions, this article demonstrates that (1) the relative importance of economic interests and status threat cannot be estimated effectively with her cross-sectional data and (2) her panel data are consistent with the claim that economic interests are at least as important as status threat. The preexisting sociological literature has offered interpretations that incorporate economic interests, and, as a result, provides a more credible explanation of the 2016 election.
  • Uneasy Settlements: Reparation Politics and the Meanings of Money in the 2005 Israeli Withdrawal from Gaza
    Negotiations about reparations tend to take the language of interests and to deal primarily with monetary compensation for disadvantaged groups. In such proceedings, aggrieved claimants are likely to make a variety of claims about the use of money to represent their experience, ranging from demands for increased compensation to rejections of the entire process altogether. This article draws attention to the communicative functions of money in the reparation process. It claims that actors may grudgingly agree to attach a monetary value to what they hold sacred, but simultaneously strive to preserve their sense of self-worth and to elicit identification by raising moral critiques about the use of fiscal logic. To exemplify, the article focuses on the 2005 removal of Jewish-Israeli settlers from Israeli-occupied territories. It shows that settlers indeed demanded to be compensated fiscally for their lost property. At the same time, it shows that they proffered moral denunciations of the use of fiscal logic in representing their experience and offered alternate logics of evaluation in its stead. The settlers resisted shame and devaluation through such competing logics, demanding that the state reaffirm a positive and embracing relationship with them despite its decision to evict them.
  • Trump Voters and the White Working Class
    To evaluate the claim that white, working-class voters were a crucial block of support for Trump in the 2016 presidential election, this article offers two sets of results. For the first, self-reports of presidential vote in 2012 and 2016 from the American National Election Studies (ANES) show that Obama-to-Trump voters and 2012 eligible non-voters composed a substantial share of Trump's 2016 voters. These voters were also more likely to be members of the white working class. Because the ANES has a somewhat coarse occupation-based measure of the working class, and has only a modest sample size, a complementary analysis is offered that merges county vote tallies in 2012 and 2016 with the public-use microdata samples of the 2012-2016 American Community Surveys. For this second piece of analysis, areal variation across 1,142 geographic units that sensibly partition the United States shows that Trump's gains in 2016 above Romney's performance in 2012 are strongly related to the proportion of the voting population in each area that is white and working class. This strong relationship holds in the six states that Trump flipped in his 2016 victory, and it varies little across other agglomerations of competitive and non-competitive states. Taken together, these results support the claim that Trump's appeal to the white working class was crucial for his victory.
  • The White Working Class and Voter Turnout in US Presidential Elections, 2004—2016
    Through an analysis of the 2004, 2008, 2012, and 2016 Current Population Surveys, as well as the 2004 through 2016 General Social Surveys, this article investigates class differences and patterns of voter turnout for the last four US presidential elections. After developing some support for the claim that a surge of white working-class voters emerged in competitive states in 2016, a portrait of class differences on political matters among white non-Hispanic eligible voters between 2004 and 2016 is offered to consider the consequences of this compositional shift. These latter results are consistent with the claim that racial prejudice, anti-immigrant sentiment, concerns about economic security, and frustration with government responsiveness may have led many white working-class voters to support an outsider candidate who campaigned on these themes. However, these same results give no support to the related claim that the white working class changed its positions on these matters in response to the 2016 primary election campaign or in the months just before the general election.
  • Interpretive Challenges in Games
    This paper argues that these is a category of challenges often overlooked in game studies. It is here called "interpretive challenges" and it requires players to sort out contextual and ambiguous information.
  • Distributive justice and equity in transportation
  • Transport legacy of mega-events and the redistribution of accessibility to urban destinations
    pre-print of paper published in the journal Cities. Pereira, R. H. M. (2018). Transport legacy of mega-events and the redistribution of accessibility to urban destinations. Cities. doi:10.1016/j.cities.2018.03.013
  • The use of lithic assemblages for the definition of short-term occupations in hunter-gatherer prehistory
    One of the main elements in prehistoric research is the study of settlement patterns. In the last five decades, stemming partially from Binford’s research on the topic, the idea of settlement patterns is based on site typology, including the traditional residential and logistic concepts. Both models of land use and exploitation are certainly marked by the notion of short-term occupation. This concept, used freely by many archaeologists, tends to rely on two main ideas: an occupation lasted a short span of time and resulted in a limited amount of material culture. Our aim, based on our results from various archaeological case studies dated to the Upper Paleolithic of Portugal, is to show that neither idea is necessarily correct: e.g. there may be short-term occupations with the production of large amounts of artifacts, such as lithic workshops; there might be very small collections, such as lithic caches, resulting from short occupations but with very long uses of the site; and most times, both are hardly differentiated within complex palimpsests. Our study shows that the common use of lithic volumetric density and retouch frequency is not always sufficient to differentiate between short and long-term occupations. Also, there are other variables that are more sensitive to indicate the duration of occupation of an archaeological context that should be used in the identification of time length.
  • Assembling Open Hardware at CERN
    Under the rubric of “Open Science,” new models of coordination and collaboration have been increasingly taken up by research institutions for the development scientific software and hardware. Yet “open” research instruments have understudied socioeconomic, organizational, and political dynamics, describing distinctive modes of participation in scientific knowledge infrastructures. In this paper, I describe the CERN “Open Hardware” initiative with a focus on the exchange practices and technologies of participation that were mobilized to assemble a critical infrastructure with distributed teams at research centers, companies, and Internet-based projects. Drawing from ethnographic and archival research of collaborative and competitive dynamics around “Open Hardware” at CERN, I examine how “open” scientific tools and infrastructures are designed, disputed, and implemented following Free and Open Source development models. In questioning “openness” both at the level of technical objects and their technical collectives, I examine the usage of Open Hardware for validating and assessing research results as well as rendering scientific projects more permeable to new modes of participation in the making of the“technoscience by other means.” --- Paper submitted for the "Colloque annuel de l’IFRIS 2018," Université Paris VI, France.
  • Transportation Policymaking in Beijing and Shanghai: Contributors, Obstacles, and Process
    With continued motorization and urbanization in Chinese cities, there is a growing demand for innovative transportation policies at the city level to address the challenges of congestion, local air pollution, and greenhouse gas emissions. Using Beijing and Shanghai as case studies, this paper draws on 32 in-depth semi-structured interviews with municipal government officials, academics, and transportation professionals to explore the city-level transportation policymaking process in China. Across the two cities, we identify three common contributors – policy learning, data informatization, and public opinion – and four obstacles – public complaint, unilateral decisionmaking, inadequate coordination among relevant departments, and lack of adaptiveness in policy implementation practice – to adopting timely and appropriate transportation policies. We then introduce a processual model that connects the contributors and obstacles identified within the flow of transportation policy among key actors in city-level government. This process shows how transportation policymaking in Chinese megacities is often reactive to public outcry over a transportation problem. This problem is investigated by a technical government research center that reports to the municipal transport committee. This committee then assesses public opinion and submits a policy recommendation to city government leadership, who make the final policy decision. Based on both case studies, we discuss potential recommendations for how to better enable transportation policymaking at the city level in China through more formalized processes of policy experimentation and public participation. We conclude with a discussion of limitations and areas of future research.
  • Tornado-level estimates of socioeconomic and demographic variables
    Tornadoes create a threat to human life. Knowing the conditions that make people vulnerable to this threat is vitally important. Yet, socioeconomic and demographic data are not consistently available at the tornado level making it hard to obtain this knowledge. In response to this limitation, here a method to estimate socioeconomic and demographic variables in a consistent manner at the tornado level for historical events is implemented and assessed. The daysmetric method uses data from the 2000 Census and the 2010 American Community Survey together with tornado reports over the period 1995-2016. Results show that a typical casualty-producing tornado affects 40 people with an interquartile range between 4 and 242 people. Results also show that the 2 July 1997 Detroit, Michigan tornado with its 90 known injuries likely affected over 116,000 people. Comparisons between estimates using the actual path and a simplified modeled path show strong correspondence (percent errors averaging less than 10%) and estimates compare favorably (correlations exceeding .9) with known demographic numbers from a sample of tornadoes indicating the procedure provides useful information for statistical studies of tornado vulnerability. The code for making the estimates and the resulting numbers are available on GitHub.
  • One Global Map but Different Worlds: Worldwide Survey of Human Access to Basic Utilities
    The paper aims to reveal one integrated global map which points out the major geographical inequalities in providing basic utilities across the countries using multivariate analysis and thematic cartography. Sixteen indicators with global coverage were selected taking into account the waste collection services, sanitation facilities, drinking water sources, energy, electricity, habitat and demographic conditions. Several data are broken down for the total, urban and rural population in order to outline the rural-urban disparities between and within countries. A special focus is given to waste collection coverage, in order to compute a comprehensive global assessment of this key indicator of public health, which is one of the poorest monitored basic utility. The world countries were divided into 10 classes according to the hierarchical cluster analysis. Each class has particular features outlining the gaps between high, middle and low-income countries with direct impact on quality of life, public health, and environment.
  • God's Country in Black and Blue: How Christian Nationalism Shapes Americans' Views about Police (Mis)treatment of Blacks
    Research shows that Americans who hold strongly to a myth about America’s Christian heritage―what we call “Christian nationalism”―tend to draw rigid boundaries around ethnic and national group membership. Incorporating theories connecting ethnic boundaries, prejudice, and perceived threat with a tendency to justify harsher penalties, bias, or excessive force against racial minorities, we examine how Christian nationalist ideology shapes Americans’ views about police treatment of black Americans. Analyses of 2017 data from a national probability sample show that adherence to Christian nationalism predicts that Americans will be more likely to believe that police treat blacks the same as whites and that police shoot blacks more often because blacks are more violent than whites. These effects are robust even when including controls for respondents’ religious and political characteristics, indicating that Christian nationalism influences Americans’ attitudes over and above the independent influences of political conservatism or religious parochialism. In fact, we find that religiosity influences policing attitudes in the opposite direction. Moreover, observed patterns do not differ by race, suggesting that Christian nationalism provides a cultural framework that can bolster anti-black prejudice among people of color as well as whites. We argue that Christian nationalism solidifies ethnic boundaries around national identity such that Americans are less willing to acknowledge police discrimination and more likely to victim-blame, even appealing to more overtly racist notions of blacks’ purportedly violent tendencies to justify police shootings. We outline the implications of these findings for understanding the current racial-political climate leading up to and during the Trump Presidency.
  • The Use of Humour in EFL Classrooms: Comparative Conversational Analysis Case Study
    Utilising a sequential explanatory mixed-methods approach, the current case study investigates the characteristics and frequency of the usage of verbal humour that positively or negatively affects the Saudi English as a Foreign Language (EFL) tertiary-level students across two different English language proficiency levels. The participants included 42 EFL teachers and 138 male EFL students from the English Language Institute (ELI) in King Abdulaziz University. The students were enrolled in the beginners (E101) and intermediate (E104) English language proficiency levels. The mixed-methods approach was implemented using audio and video recordings and a questionnaire as the data collection instruments. The findings stated the four main characteristics of both positive and negative verbal humours in Saudi EFL classrooms. These findings revealed that humour was more frequently used at the intermediate than at the beginner level, and that the most effective forms of humour at both levels involved language play, irony, jokes, and self-defeating humour. Suggestions, recommendations, pedagogical implications have also been presented.
  • Leaving the Financial Nest: Connecting Young Adults’ Financial Independence to Financial Security
    Objective: This study examines variation in young adults’ transitions to financial independence and the relationship between these transitions and financial security. Background: Individuals on their families for substantial financial support well into early adulthood, even as young adults perceive independence as a key marker of adulthood. Given known variation in transitions to adulthood and unequal exposure to financial precariousness across social groups, the authors ask whether heterogeneity emerges with regards to the timing of financial independence and types of support received, and how differences in pathways to independence may matter for financial security later in young adulthood. Method: The authors estimate group-based trajectory models of four indicators of financial independence for 1,719 young adults from age 18 - 27 using data from the 2005-2015 Panel Study of Income Dynamics ( These trajectories are then used to estimate predicted levels of financial security at the end of the study period, using logistic and linear regression analysis. Results: Results show that paths to young adults’ financial independence are best characterized by four types of trajectories: Consistently Independent (23%), Quickly Independent (41%), Gradually Independent (23%), and Consistently Supported (13%), with types and duration of support varying substantially across trajectories. The authors find that young adults experiencing trajectories characterized by lower levels of familial support also report higher levels of financial insecurity by the end of the survey. Conclusion: The findings suggest that the patterning and timing of financial independence in the transition to adulthood has implications for financial wellbeing.
  • Open Educational Science
    Scientific progress is built on research that is reliable, accurate, and verifiable. The methods and evidentiary reasoning that underlie scientific claims must be available for scrutiny. Like other fields, the education sciences suffers from problems such as failure to replicate, validity and generalization issues, publication bias, and high costs of access to publications—all of which are symptoms of a nontransparent approach to research. Each aspect of the scientific cycle—research design, data collection, analysis, and publication—can and should be made more transparent and accessible. Open Education Science is a set of practices designed to increase the transparency of evidentiary reasoning and access to scientific research in a domain characterized by diverse disciplinary traditions and a commitment to impact in policy and practice. Transparency and accessibility are functional imperatives that come with many benefits for the individual researcher, the scientific community, and society at large—Open Education Science is the way forward.
  • Early Modern Human Lithic Technology from Jerimalai, East Timor
    Jerimalai is a rock shelter in East Timor with cultural remains dated to 42,000 years ago, making it one of the oldest known sites of modern human activity in island Southeast Asia. It has special global significance for its record of early pelagic fishing and ancient shell fish hooks. It is also of regional significance for its early occupation and comparatively large assemblage of Pleistocene stone artefacts. Three major findings arise from our study of the stone artefacts. First, there is little change in lithic technology over the 42,000 year sequence, with the most noticeable change being the addition of new artefact types and raw materials in the mid-Holocene. Second, the assemblage is dominated by small chert cores and implements rather than pebble toolsand choppers, a pattern we argue is common in island SE Asian sites as opposed to mainland SE Asian sites. Third, the Jerimalai assemblage bears a striking resemblance to the assemblage from Liang Bua, argued by the Liang Bua excavation team to be associated with Homo floresiensis. We argue that the near proximity of these two islands along the Indonesian Island chain (c.100km apart), the long antiquity of modern human occupation in the region (as documented at Jerimalai), and the strong resemblance of distinctive flake stone technologies seen at both sites, raises the intriguing possibility that both the Liang Bua and Jerimalai assemblages were created by modern humans.
  • The limits of foreign aid diplomacy: How bureaucratic design shapes aid distribution
    How does the institutional design of a state's bureaucracy affect foreign policy? We argue that institutions can moderate bureaucrats' incentives to act in accordance with an Executive's diplomatic preferences. Where the Executive can influence budgets or career paths, bureaucrats face incentives to adopt her diplomatic goals as their own. Where agencies are shielded from Executive influence, bureaucrats are free to act independently in a bid to enhance their autonomy and their reputation for competence. To test these expectations, we develop a new measure of bureaucratic independence for the 15 aid-giving agencies in the US government. We analyze how independence affects foreign aid allocation patterns over the 1999–2010 period. We find that in “dependent” agencies, foreign aid flows track the diplomatic objectives of the president. In “independent” agencies, aid flows appear less responsive to presidential priorities and more responsive to indicators of need in the recipient country. Our results highlight limits on the diplomatic use of foreign aid and emphasize the importance of domestic institutional design. Our findings yield insight into a broad range of policy domains—including international finance, immigration, and the application of economic sanctions—where multiple government agencies are in charge of implementing foreign policy.
  • Analysis and Solutions for Plastic Pollution in US
    This paper discusses the reasons of plastic pollution in the US in several aspects. The key point of pollution is massive disposable plastics and people should say no to them sooner or later. Then there are 4 alternative policies for solving the problem. All of them are evaluated, analyzed as well as some possible trade-offs. The current best choice is to increase landfill density while producing CH4 from landfill suit as a sustainable trade-off, and develop microorganisms of degrading plastics. But developing proper replacements through biotechnology and chemistry technologies will be the ultimate solution.
  • Hijacking the Policy-Making Process: Political Effects of the International Fertility Decision-Making Study for 2010s' Japan
    Studies that compare social conditions in a certain country with those of other nations can result in national feelings of inferiority or superiority. Comparative studies thus often serve as political devices. Owing to the development of the Internet and translation technology, large-scale, cross-national surveys have become a low-cost means to manipulate public opinion. In this paper, I introduce the case of the political use of the International Fertility Decision-Making Study (IFDMS) in Japan. IFDMS was conducted in 2009-2010 by researchers from Cardiff University and Merck Serono, a global pharmaceutical company. IFDMS prepared a questionnaire in 13 languages for 18 countries, targeted at both men and women who were trying to conceive. It featured questions regarding medical knowledge about pregnancy. According to the published results, the respondents who lived in Japan exhibited a lower level of knowledge about conception than those in other countries. Based on this result, medical authorities in Japan insisted that, because of the lack of knowledge, the Japanese people had thoughtlessly postponed childbirth, resulting in fertility decline. The government accordingly created a new outline of population policy in 2015, in which it referred the results from IFDMS to advocate sex education for youth in order to encourage early marriage. However, IFDMS is unreliable. It has many defects including mistranslations in the questionnaire. Nevertheless, results from IFDMS were accepted as reliable scientific findings in conferences and journals in the field of natural sciences in Europe, bypassing scrutiny by social science researchers in the targeted countries. Language differences also prevented the accurate understanding of the research results. The case of the political effect of IFDMS thus teaches us that social impacts of comparative studies may be deceptive and nullify social scientific efforts to accurately perceive the society in which we live. (See for details.)
  • The Migrant Letter Digitised: Visualising Metadata
    Within the digital humanities, social network analysis - using digital technologies to examine the relationship between people, places and things - has explored a wide range of digital communication formats, from emails to tweets. This has been made possible because of the large amount of online digital data and has spawned many new techniques specifically aimed at analysing very large datasets, often termed Big Data. The quantity of data resulting from digital communication is enormous, and therefore a tempting source of raw material. However, there is also a long tradition of non-digital communication, letter-writing, which shares many of the formal characteristics of digital formats and also constitutes a huge body of data.
  • The general problem of prioritization
    Resources in our decision-making are fundamentally limited. We cannot pursue all goals and we cannot pursue any subset of goals in all the ways they can be pursued. In other words: We have to engage in prioritization. This universal and basic need for prioritization is the general principle of prioritization. Real-world decision-making routinely violates the general principle of prioritization; this routine violation is the general problem of prioritization. The general problem of prioritization is caused by a number of factors, both on the individual micro- as well as on the more aggregate meso- and macro-levels. Given the importance of rational prioritization, reducing the general problem of prioritization, not least in the realm of policy-making, is a top priority.