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Intro to Comparative Politics Midterm Studyguide

by: Michelle Notetaker

Intro to Comparative Politics Midterm Studyguide INTL 3300

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Midterm study guide over the general terms and concepts discussed in class.
Intro to Comparative Politics
Joshua Lee Darnell
Study Guide
Intro to Comparative Politics
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This 14 page Study Guide was uploaded by Michelle Notetaker on Wednesday March 2, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to INTL 3300 at University of Georgia taught by Joshua Lee Darnell in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 54 views. For similar materials see Intro to Comparative Politics in International Studies at University of Georgia.


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Date Created: 03/02/16
1 Comparitive Politics MIDTERM Studyguide 2016 Chapter 1: The Comparative Approach Asking Why: Research Questions in Comparative Politics -We analyze politics comparatively -The Five W’s: Who What Where When Why and to this list we often add “how” -Which of these questions are the most profound and lead us to learn the most? For the most part, these relatively simple questions lead us to answers based on simple facts, such as prominent historical figures (who), or places (where), or dates (when). -The relative merits of our arguments will be found in who has the better evidence to support their claim -Argument: The placement of evidence in logical form in support of a position or claim. -Comparative Politics: The subfield of political science that aims to analyze multiple cases using the comparative method. —-> We seek to develop strong claims about cause and effect, testing various hypotheses (that is, possible answers to our question) using factual evidence, and developing larger theories about why the world is operating like it does. Our emphasis is trying to answer “why” questions. Major Questions in comparative politics: 1) why are some countries democratic and others not? 2) why are some countries rich and others not? 3) why do countries have different institutions and forms of government? 4) why do countries have different policies in a variety of areas? 5) why do some social revolutions succeed and endure while others fail? 6) why do some countries develop strong senses of statehood and nationhood and others not? 7) why do countries go to war or establish peace? 8) why are some societies subjected to terrorism and not others? -“Why” questions are a good rule of thumb, but good questions may also begin with other words. -Open-ended question: A question that in principle, is open to numerous possible answers. That is, no hunch or expected answer is built into the question, so the researcher can remain open to what the evidence reveals. Empirical Arguments vs. Normative Arguments: -The issue of right and wrong relates to the issue of causal arguments versus normative arguments. In the text we mainly address empirical arguments: arguments that link cause and effect, uncovering answers as to why the political world operates as it does. 2 -Normative arguments by contrast, emphasize the way things should be. Following pair of questions highlights the distinction: 1) Why are some countries democratic and others authoritarian (causal) 2) Why is democracy preferable to authoritarianism? - Comparativists answer questions more like the first than the second - The point of comparative politics is not to come up with good arguments in favor of democracy, or greater wealth, or peace. Rather, our job is to find what causes these things, and we can assume that a commitment to uncovering the causes comes from some interest in the outcome. Empirical: - drawn from observations of the world. - Normative : concerned with specifying which sort of practice or institution is morally or ethically justified. -comparativists are like doctors diagnosing social problems: We try to help with the process of making politics healthier, not by making our most passionate case for why it is better to be healthy, but instead explaining how we can be healthy— >rather spend energy trying to solve the puzzle of why democracy and authoritarianism arise in the first place. Comparativists would overwhelmingly express a preference for democracy if asked, though some might note limitations of democracy…but would rather use energy to solve the puzzle of why they arise in the first place. Solving Intellectual Puzzles: A Contemporary Analogy -social science is a process of problem solving. -social scientists don’t have physical evidence to rely on, they must rely on social facts & evidence of a more qualitative and historical nature. The evidence used by social scientists is also subject to interpretation. -By analogy; we can glimpse the sort of intellectual puzzles we solve through a mirror of pop culture.. Concepts: Concept: An idea comparativists use to think about the processes we study. -social science works with concepts, abstract ideas that we usually attempt to define as we ask and answer our questions. Examples of concepts: freedom, democracy (electoral democracy, delegate democracy, and many other subtypes), justice, nationalism, constitutionalism, federalism, identity, gender relations, special interests, and social movements, among many others. -Working with concepts helps us think about the social world, which is too complex to analyze without them. We must be careful in defining them, because bad concepts make for bad analysis. Features of Good Concepts: -good concepts have several features including clarity, coherence, consistency, and usefulness. The concept of “democratization” when used correctly is an example of a concept that is worthwhile on all of these accounts. 1-concepts must be clear and coherent 2-concepts must be logically consistent, both internally and from one to another 3-concepts must be useful Conceptualization: 3 -the deliberate process through which we create and select social- scientific concepts. -Using concepts may be creative, because social scientists need to develop their own in many cases. -The process of making up and defining concepts is called conceptualization. -Some questions require more general concepts, and others more specific concepts. This issue is sometimes referred to as “Sartori’s ladder of abstraction” The ladder ranges from general concepts at the top to very specific concepts at the bottom and the rung one stands on depends on the specific questions being asked and the cases being examined. -Sartori’s Ladder of Distraction: the idea that we can organize the concepts on the basis of their specifity or generality. Operationalizing: From Concepts to Measures: -operationalization: the process through which we take our basic concepts and render them measurable. -once we have a clear notion of a concept, we need to be able to measure it; that is, we need to operationalize our concept. To operationalize a concept is to make it workable, mainly by making it measurable. When a concept is operational-or we have an operational definition-we can begin to explain what we are studying. We can start to explain cause-and-effect only when we have clarified what we are talking about and can measure it. Ex.) Possible Operational Definitions of Democratization: A case of democratization occurs when… -a country holds a free and fair multiparty election -two turnovers of government at the ballot box have occurred, in which the ruling party loses an election and peacefully steps down from power -free and fair elections are held, and a constitutional law is in place guaranteeing the rights of freedom of speech, press, assembly, and religion to all citizens. -there is no verifiable suppression of political participation and expression -more than two-thirds of citizens in a survey express values that reject authoritarian rule Empirical Evidence: -questions demand answers. -in short, social scientists couple empirical evidence with theory. In comparative politics, empirical means those observations we can make from looking at the “real world” rather than using abstract theories or speculation. Facts and Evidence: -facts are abundant, but evidence is more precious -Evidence: consists of facts used in support of proposition, or facts used in support of a hypothesis. Information that has implications for a theory or hypothesis -evidence is based on facts, so a “point of view” or an opinion is not evidence -Levels of Analysis: the level (individual, organizational, societal) at which observations are made, or at which causal processes operate. Cases and Case Studies: -Cases are the basic units of analysis in comparative politics. In many instances, our cases are countries, usually for a certain period. Case: in comparative analysis, a unit or example of a phenomenon to be studied. 4 -At the other end of the spectrum, some studies deal with “large-N”  comparisons, in which many cases are analyzed through statistical searches for common features. The Comparative Method: -Comparative politics unlike American government or international politics-is defined by its method. It reaches conclusions about cause and effect through structured and systematic comparing and contrasting of cases. Variables and Comparison: -The causes an outcomes we are trying to measure are called variables in the social sciences, bc they vary from one case to another. An element or factor that is able to change. -the effect, or outcome is the level of democracy, which is high in one case and low in another. Something that is produced or changed in any social or political process. -dependent variable: in hypothesis testing, the dependent variable is the effect or outcome that we expect to be acted on (or have its value altered) by the independent variable. -independent variable: in hypothesis testing, the independent variable is the one we expect to “act on” or change the value of the dependent variable -variation: differences between cases in any given study of comparative politics -Most similar systems (MSS): A research design in which we compare cases that are similar with respect to a number of factors but with distinct outcomes. -Most similar systems design: A research design in which we compare cases that differ with respect to multiple factors but in which the outcome is the same. -Comparitive Checking: the process of testing the conclusions from a set of comparisons against additional cases or evidence. -Generalizability: the quality that a given theory, hypothesis, or finding has of being applicable to a wide number of cases. -Within case comparision: the comparative analysis of variation that takes place over time or in distinct parts of a single case. Chapter 2: Theories, Hypotheses, and Evidence INTRO to Theories, Hypothesis and Evidence: -theory: general set of explanatory claims about some specifiable empirical range. -hypothesis: a specific prediction, derived from a theory, that can be tested against empirical evidence. -deductive reasoning: the process of moving from general claims or theories to specific observations or predictions about a phenomenon or set of cases. -deviant case: a case that doesn’t fit the pattern predicted by a given theory. -inductive reasoning: the process of moving from specific observations to general claims. -thesis: a statement for which one argues on the basis of evidence. Types of Evidence: -qualitative: a form of analysis that aims to discern relationships between events or phenomena as described in narrative form, such as an account of a historical process. 5 -quantitative: quantitative analysis aims for the mathematical discernment of relationships between variables, typically involving a large number of cases or observations. -Inference:the process through which we aim to test observable implications (often about cause and effect) about any given theory. Hypothesis Testing: -Correlation: a relationship between two variables in which they either tend to move in the same direction (positve direction) or opposite directions (negative correlations) -Causation: causation exists when one variable causes another. -Falsifiability: the testability of a theory or hypothesis. A good hypothesis could be logically demonstrated to be false by evidence. -endogeneity: the name given to any circumstance in which two variables exhibit mutual or reciprocal effects. Critiques: Using Theories and Evidence: -empirical critique: An effort to point to important evidence that does not support a conventional version of any give theory. -theoretical critique: An effort to show that a given theory has logical limitations. -Scope conditions: the conditions or range of cases for which an argument works. The Challenge of Measurement: Errors, Biases and Validity: -indicator: An element or feature that indicates the presence of an underlying factor. -measurement error: either an episodic error, such as improperly recording data, or a systemic error. meaning that a measurement does not fully reflect what it is designed to measure. -measurement bias: a measure is biased if it will not produce comparable results for all observations. -measurement validity: whether a given measurement will effectively capture or represent what we are researching. Chapter 3: The Modern State: Concepts: state: the most important form of political organization in modern politics, which, in its ideal form, is characterized by centralized control of the use of force, bureaucratic organization, and the provision of a number of public goods. -rule of law: A system that imposes regularized rules in a polity, with key criteria including equal rights, the regular enforcement of rules, and the relative independence of the judiciary. -modern state: A concept used to distinguish states in the modern world from earlier forms of political centralization; it includes features such as extensive bureaucracy, centralization of violence, and impersonality. -state capacity: The ability of the state to achieve its objectives, especially the abilities to control violence, effectively tax the population, and maintain well- functioning institutions and the rule of law. -failed state: a state that cannot or does not perform its expected functions. -human capital: The education, skills, health, and other qualities individuals and groups possess that affect their economic prospects. -state building: the process through which states are constructed out of other kinds of polities, or by which state capacity is increased. -civil society: a space in society outside of the organization of the state, in which citizens come together and organize themselves. 6 Types: characteristics of modern states: -bureaucracy: A form of organization, that in it’s ideal form, has individuals operating and working under established, specified, and complex rules. -impersonality: a quality attributed by some scholars to modern states, which are presumed to be less likely to be identified with the personalities of their leaders. -citizenship: A form of relationship between the state and individuals subject of its control in which citizens have certain basic rights and are in some way represented by the state. -sovereignty: the key way the authority of the modern state is conceptualized states are understood to be the ultimate authority within their specifically demarcated authorities. Functions of the Modern states: -taxation -defense -policing -economic management: states’ efforts to shape the economic performance of their societies, especially in fiscal and monetary policy. -fiscal policy: budget setting, which is dependent on generating revenue followed by government spending. -monetary policy: states’ efforts to shape the value of a society’s currency, often through the use of a central bank in the case of a modern state. -welfare state: A state that aims to provide a basic safety net for the most vulnerable elements of its population, often accomplished through social insurance, public health care plans, and poverty relief. Causes and Effects: Why do States and Welfare States Emerge? -state system: the condition that many of the most important actors in international relations are states, which can be understood as systematically linked to one another. -bellicist theory: theory associated with scholars such as Charles Tilly, who argue that interstate wars were decisive in the creation of the modern state. -diffusion: the process through which a practice or idea spreads locally, nationally, and globally. -organization: institutionalized group such as a state, corporation, political party, social movement or international body. -isomorphism: in institutional theory, the quality that two or more organizations have by virtue of being structurally similar. -world society theory: A theory associated with scholars such as John Meyer, who argue that basic organizational features of the state system are cultural and have diffused globally. Chapter 4: Development and Political Economy: Concepts: -development: a process by which a society changes or advances, often measured in terms of economic growth, but also sometimes measure in terms of quality of life, standard of living, access to freedoms and opportunities, or other indicators. -gross domestic product (GDP): the total value of goods and services produced in a given country or territory, per capita GDP is divided by the population. -gross national income (GNI): a measure of the total income of all of a country’s citizens, whether living in their home country or abroad. 7 -purchasing power parity (PPP): An adjustment made to income measures to account for differences in cost of living. -poverty: the state of being poor, as measured by low income, deprivation, lack of access to resources, or limited economic opportunities. -poverty line: a specified threshold below which individuals or groups are judged to be in poverty. -absolute poverty: a conception of poverty that involves setting a certain line below which people will be defined as poor, typically understood in terms of the inability to purchase a certain set of basic goods and services. -inequality: in the social sciences, the differential distribution of access to goods like power, status, and material sources. -Gini coeffecient: the most common measure of income inequality in any given population, usually expressed as a number between 0 and 1, with 0 being total equality and 1 being maximal equality. Employment and Inflation: -employment: ongoing, regular access to paid work. -unemployment: the lack of ongoing, regular access to paid work -underemployment: a circumstance in which an individual or group has access to paid labor that is insufficient for meeting their needs or preferences. -inflation: increase in the price of goods and services. -hyperinflation: exceedingly high inflation, which dramatically erodes the value of money over time. -deflation: decline in the prices of goods and services, often associated with depressions or serious slowdowns in economic activity. -fiscal measures: measures of a government’s revenues and/or expenditures. Social Outcomes and Human Development: -life expectancy: the average age until which members of a society (or some group within society) live. -infant mortality: a major public health indicator, which typically measure the number of infants per 1,000 born that do not survive until the age of 1 year. -literacy rate: the percentage of a population that can read. -Human Development Index (HDI): A composite measure developed by the United Nations to provide a broad view of annual development and well-being around the world, based on income, life expectancy, and literacy and school enrollments. Gender Relations and Racial and Ethnic Identities: -gender matters for development in two major ways; It is both a means to development and one of the ends of development. -regardless of how well a country’s economy does, that society might not be considered developed if its women are not allowed to own property, or hold jobs outside the home, or voice their opinions. -empowering women in general helps advance other aspects of development. Satisfaction and Happiness: -utility: the value that people derive from resources to which they have access. Cultural Development: -for many people around the world, development might mean retaining and deepening one’s own culture. Sustainability: -environmental sustainability: the quality that one or another practice has with being compatible with the long-term health of the environment. 8 Causes and Effects: -political economy: the interaction or interrelationship between politics and the economy in a given country or internationally, to include how politics affects economies and how economies affect politics. Institutions: Markets and States: -market-led development: An approach to economic management in which the state aims to control economic behavior as little as possible. -neoliberalism: an ideological tendency that favors liberal democracy and market- led development. -privatization: transfer of control (of a business, industry, or service) from public to private. -state-led development: An approach to development in which the state plays a central role, not just through enforcing contracts and property rights but through coordinating investment and, in many instances, through state-owned enterprises. -public goods: goods or services, often provided by a government, for use by all members of society and for which one person’s use of good does not compromise anyone else’s use of the good. Examples include national defense, basic infrastructure, and a healthy environment. -institution: a regularized or patterned activity that shapes the behavior of individuals and groups, including formal organizations like state or political parties, as well as more informal institutions such as norms and values. -new institutionalism: the name given to the turn to institutional throw in the last several decades in economics, political science, and sociology. -institutionalism: an approach to theorizing in comparative politics and related fields tat places emphasis on the the power of institutions to shape the behavior of individuals, often focusing on implications for individuals’ strategic choices. -rational institutionalism: an approach to theorizing in comparative politics and related fields that places emphasis on the power of institutions to shape the behavior of individuals, one which often focuses on implications of institutions for individuals’ strategic choices. -historical institutionalism: An approach to theorizing that places emphasis on the power of institutions to shape the behavior of individuals, and how this operates over time. Culture and Development -path dependent: the name given to historical processes in which future developments are shaped or partially determined by events at previous stages in those processes. -civil society:public space or zone of social life, at least partially autonomous from the state, in which individuals are free to engage in deliberation and social movement activity, for example. -social capital: advantage that individuals or groups hold by virtue of their social relationships. -trust: the even to which an individual has confidence in the reliability or good conduct of others. Systems and Structures: International and Domestic: -social class: a contested term which aims to conceptualize how access to resources is patterned in societies, with an emphasis on income distribution and the possible identification or common interest one may share with others of similar economic means. 9 -dependency: a theory that argues that developing countries cannot simply embrace free trade because this will lead to ever-increasing wealth disparities between them and the advanced economies. -export-led growth: a strategy for achieving economic growth dependent on sending natural resources or agricultural or industrial products for sale in foreign markets. Chapter 5: Democracy and Democratization: Concepts: democracy: a form of regime associated with “rule by the people” that signifies rights and liberties for citizens, including political rights to participate in elections and civil liberties such as freedom of speech. Political rights: rights of individuals to participate in political life. including the right to political speech, the right to vote, and the right to join political associations. civil rights: Rights of individuals to participate in civic life, inducing freedoms of assembly, speech, access to information, and equal access to institutions, among others. regime: a form or type of governmental system, with an emphasis on institutions and rules. democratic regime: a regime with predominantly democratic institutions, including basic civil rights and regular, free elections. Procedural definition of democracy: conception of democracy, contrasted with a substantive definition, that emphasizes the minimal standards, procedures, or rules that a country should in place to govern political life. substantive definition of democracy: a conception of democracy, contused with a procedural definition, that views a polity’s democratic status as dependent on the satisfaction of certain substantive ends, such as the extension of broad rights or the reduction of income inequality. Regime change and democratization: regime change: any major change of regime type, including democratization, democratic breakdown, or certain types of authoritarian persistence in which one type of authoritarian regime gives way to another. regime type: the form of a political regime, such as democratic versus authoritarian, as well as subtypes, such as personalistic dictatorships or totalitarian regimes. democratization: the process of a regime becoming more democratic, including both democratic transition and democratic consolidation. democratic breakdown: the process through which a democratic regime partially or completely loses its democratic status. transition: the movement from an authoritarian regime to a democratic one. consolidaton: the process through which a new democratic order becomes institutionalized and therefore more likely to endure. Types: constitutional republic: a polity without a monarch in which the basic rules of politics are laid out in a constitution. constitutional monarchy: political system in which a monarch such as a king, queen or emperor plays a role as a head of state, but has powers limited by a constitution. representative monarchy: a conception of democracy in which politicians and institutions are understood to represent the electorate, who nevertheless can constrain their behavior through periodic elections and other forms of participation. 10 multiparty democracy: democracies in which two parties compete for power. referendum: a popular vote on a special issue. direct democracy: a conception of democracy that places great emphasis on direct citizen involvement in politics, especially involving plebiscites and/or citizen assemblies. Types of Democratization: -democratic transition: the process through which a non-democratic regime becomes democratic. -democratic consolidation: process through which, after a transition from authoritarianism, a polity strengthens its democracy. -modernization theory: a theory that traces democracy to broad social changes, especially economic development and the changes that accompany it. Chapter 6: Authoritarian Regimes and Democratic Breakdown: Concepts: -authoritarianism: a form of government or regime that is non-democratic. -authoritarian regime: a non-democratic regime. -democratic breakdown: the transition from a democratic to a non-democratic regime. -authoritarian persistence: the ongoing continuation of an authoritarian regime, such as that democratic transition does not take place. -hybrid regime: a class of regime that appears to be neither fully democratic nor fully authoritarian, such as electoral authoritarianism, delegate democracy, and illiberal democracy. Types: -totalitarian regime: a form of authoritarian regime that aims to control everything about the lives of its subject population, such as in the Soviet Union and Germany under the Nazis. -theocracy: an authoritarian regime controlled by religious leaders, or a state with very strict religious restrictions that uses religion as tis main mode of legitimation. -personalistic dictatorship: a form of authoritarianism in which the personality of the dictator is highlighted. -bureaucratic-authoritarian regime: a type of authoritarian regime, common in latin america and elsewhere in the mid-to-late twentieth century, that was associated with control of the state more by a group of elites (often military) than by a single individual leader. -illiberal democracy: A polity with some democratic features but in which political and civil rights are not all guaranteed or protected. -delegative democracy: a hybrid form of regime that is democratic but involves the electorate “delegating” significant authority to a government. -electoral authoritarianism: a name applied to situations in which authoritarian regimes nominally compete in elections. -competitive authoritarianism: a form of government or regime that allows some political competition but not enough to qualify as fully democratic. Barriers to Collective Action: collective action: action undertaken by individuals and groups to pursue their ends in formally or informally coordinated ways, often in pursuit of some common or public good such as expanded civil rights or sustainable use of common resources. Chapter 7: Constitutions and Constitutional Design: -institution: social or political structure or set of practices, including government organizations, that shapes the behavior of individuals and groups. 11 Concepts: -constitution: fundamental and supreme laws, usually written in a charter, that establish the basis of a political system and the basis for other laws. -constitutionalism: the limitation of government through a constitution. Constitutional Design: -constitutional design: features of constitutions that shape the basic features of the political system, such as separation of powers and responsibilities between levels of government and branches of government. -federalism: system of government with constitutional design of separation of powers between central government and subnational governments. -unitarism: system of government in which central government is predominant and the powers of subnational governments are limited to those delegated by the center. -separation of powers: the division of powers in a government system between branches of government or between levels of government -judiciary: the branch of government responsible for the interpretation of laws in courts. -judicial review: system of constitutional interpretation in which judges rule on the constitutionality of laws passed by legislature and executive. Types: -parliamentary sovereignty: system in which constitutionality of laws passed by legislature and executive are not subject to constitutional interoperation by judiciary. Judicial Review and Democracy: -judicial activism: term used, often pejoratively, to characterize judicial actions that actively reinterpret legislation and thus imply active powers typically reserved for the legislative branch. Chapter 8: Legislatures and Legislative Election: Concepts: -legislature: assembly or body of representatives with the authority to make laws. -bicameral legislature: legislature with two chambers, which may have equal or unequal powers. -chamber: an assembly or body of a legislature, often referring to one of two such bodies in a bicameral legislature. -lower chamber: in a bicameral legislature, the house that typically has a larger number of legislators than upper chambers, and often represents the national vote either more proportionally or through smaller geographic constituencies. -upper chamber: the chamber in a bicameral legislature that is usually smaller in number of legislators, often representing larger geographic constituencies such as states or provinces. -congress: a form of legislature, typically associated with a presidential system in which there is a separation of powers. -parliament: a type of legislature often associated with systems in which legislatures vote on the leadership of the executive branch and the formation of government. Electoral Systems: -district system: an electoral system in which voters select representatives from specific geographic constituencies. -constituency: a group of voters or a geographic district that legislators or other elected officials represent. 12 -single member district (SMD): electoral system in which voters choose a candidate and the winner is elected by the most votes earned or through winning a runoff vote. -first-past-the-post: electoral system in which the candidate with the most number of votes is elected, regardless of whether a majority has been attained. -runoff: electoral system in which the top candidates after a first round of voting compete in one or more additional rounds of voting until a candidate receives a majority. -Multi-member district: electoral system in which district constituencies have more than one representative. -proportional representation: in it’s pure form, an electoral system in which voters choose a preferred party and seats are allocated to parties according to the percentage of the vote the party wins. -open list proportional representation: electoral system in which voters choose a candidate but votes are aggregated by political party to determine the allocation of seats across parties. -alternative vote: voting system in which voters rank candidates and the votes of low-ranking candidates are reallocated until a winner is determined. -single transferable vote (STV): electoral system in which voters rank candidates and the winners’ surplus votes are reallocated to other lower-ranking candidates until a slate of representatives are chosen. -strategic voting: voting in a way that does not reflect a voter’s ideal preference, so as to prevent a less desired outcome. -indirect election: electoral system in which representatives are chosen by other elected officials, rather than directly by the citizenry at large. -executive-legislative relations: the set of relationships between the executive and the legislative branches of government. -representation: in legislatures, the process by which elected legislators reflect the interests and preferences of voters in their constituencies. -apportionment: the process by which legislative seats are distributed among geographic constituencies. -districting: the process by which districts or other geographic constituencies are created for the purpose of elections. -gerrymandering: creation of districts of irregular shape or composition in order to achieve a desired political result. -malapportionment: apportionment in which voters are unequally represented in a legislature, such as through relatively greater numbers of legislators per capita for low-population areas and lesser number of legislators per capita for high-population areas. -committee: in a legislature, a body composed of a group of legislators convened to perform a certain set of tasks. Chapter 9: Executives: -executive: the branch of government, or the individuals at the top of that branch, that executes of administers policies and laws in a country. -bureaucracy: the organization of unelected officials, often considered part of the executive branch, that implements, executes, and enforces laws and policies. -head of state: a person with executive functions that is a country’s symbolic representative, including elected presidents and unelected monarchs. 13 -head of government: the top executive official responsible for forming governments and formulating and implementing policies. -prime minister: a chief executive in a parliamentary system of government. -president: an executive leader that typically combines the functions of head of state and head of government, and is not directly responsible to a legislature. -monarch: A head of state in a monarchy, who usually inherits a position for life and may have either substantial political powers or very limited ceremonial powers. -government: in the context of executives, the set of top elected executive officials and high-level political appointees that shape and orient policy; also refers to the broader administrative apparatus of the state. -administration: the bureaucracy of state officials, usually considered part of the executive branch, that executes policy. -executive-legislative relations: the set of political relationships between the executive branch of government, which executes laws/policies, and the legislative branch, which often has the authority to pass those laws/policies. -presidentialism: president serves as chief executive, being independent of the legislature and often combing the functions of head of state and head of government, -direct election: with regard to executives, electoral system in which voters cast a vote directly for the head of government or head of state. -parliamentarism: a system of government in which the head of government is elected by and accountable to a parliament or legislature. -indirect election: with regard to executives, electoral system in which most voters never cast a ballot directly for the individual who becomes head of government. -semi-presidential system: a mixed or hybrid system combing aspects of presidentialism and parliamentarism. -formal powers: powers possessed by a political actor, such as a chief executive, as a function of their constitutional or legal position. -veto: an act of executive power in which an executive rejects a law passed by legislature. -dissolving the legislature: the practice of a chief executive disbanding the legislature, often accompanied in a democratic regime by the calling for new elections. -decree: an executive made order that has the force of law, despite not being passed through a legislature -executive order: an order made by a chief executive or top official to the bureaucracy that determines how the bureaucracy should enact or interpret the law. -state of emergency: a condition followed by some constitutions in which guarantees, rights, or provisions are temporarily limited, to be justified by emergencies or exceptional circumstances. -term limit: restriction on the number of times or total amount of time a political official can serve in a given position. -impeachment: a process by which a legislature indicates proceedings to determine -vote of no confidence: a vote taken by a legislature that expresses a lack of support for the government or executive, which, if successful, often results in dissolution of the government and the calling of new legislative elections. 14 -partisan powers: the powers accruing to a government official, such as a chief executive, by virtue of the official’s leverage or power over members of a political party. -coalition: group of two or more political parties that governs by sharing executive power and responsibilities. -cabinet: the group of senior officials in the executive branch, including ministers, who advise the head of government or head of state -portfolio: the set of duties and tasks that correspond to a given ministerial office. -minimum winning coalition: governing coalition that contains no surplus parties beyond those required to form government. -minimum connected winning coalition: a minimum winning coalition in which all parties in the coalition are “connected” or adjacent to one another on the political spectrum. -minimum size: governing coalition that is closest to the threshold needed to govern, typically 50% of the legislative seats plus one seat. -grand coalition: governing coalition composed of two or more major parties that hold a super majority of legislative seats and represent a supermajority of the electorate. -informal powers: those powers possessed by an office holder that are not “official” but rather based on custom, convention, or other sources of influence. -patronage: use of government favors, typically in the form of employment, to garner political support. -clientelism: practice of exchanging political favors, often in the form of government employment or services, for political support. -populism: political approach in which leaders, often heads of government and top executive branch officials, make direct appeals to “the people” and seek to develop direct political ties with the masses. -consociational: systems that use formal mechanisms to coordinate different groups sharing access to power.


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