Matching Items (164)

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An Analysis of Bias in Competitive Academic Debate

Description

Through collection of survey data on the characteristics of college debaters, disparities in participation and success for women and racial and ethnic minorities are measured. This study then uses econometric

Through collection of survey data on the characteristics of college debaters, disparities in participation and success for women and racial and ethnic minorities are measured. This study then uses econometric tools to assess whether there is an in-group judging bias in college debate that systematically disadvantages female and minority participants. Debate is used as a testing ground for competing economic theories of taste-based and statistical discrimination, applied to a higher education context. The study finds persistent disparities in participation and success for female participants. Judges are more likely to vote for debaters who share their gender. There is also a significant disparity in the participation of racial and ethnic minority debaters and judges, as well as female judges.

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  • 2014-12

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CHAOS THEORY AND THE EVOLUTION OF THE AMERICAN EMPIRE

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Since the start of U.S. hostilities against Iraq in 2003, International Relations scholars have begun to characterize the U.S. as potentially an empire. This is because the traditional notion of

Since the start of U.S. hostilities against Iraq in 2003, International Relations scholars have begun to characterize the U.S. as potentially an empire. This is because the traditional notion of sovereignty under the Westphalian nation-state system is held as a constant in the prominent theories that govern how it is thought how nation-states interact with each other. The blatant violation of international laws and norms with impunity by the U.S. have led to a re-questioning of the true dynamics underlying this system. Some scholars have characterized the recent research as a popular fad, but most of the research is aimed at just attempting to show how the U.S. could be an empire. What the current research is missing is how the U.S. became an empire, with that analysis anchored in an historical comparison. A complete chronological review of each system in its entirety is required, with all of its components, to more fully understand these phenomena. This has required researchers to devise a new methodological process of qualitatively and quantitatively analyzing macro structures. We believe the implications of the insights that can be obtained with this new method could be of use to many fields and can generate many new hypotheses to test in the future.

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  • 2014-12

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Language as a Barrier to the Eurozone Being an Optimum Currency Area

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The European Union has increasingly integrated since World War II to the point where most European countries now share a currency and have freedom of movement for travelers and workers.

The European Union has increasingly integrated since World War II to the point where most European countries now share a currency and have freedom of movement for travelers and workers. This has created asymmetries in the European economy because of reports and studies that have found a low labor mobility, which is a requirement of a common currency area. This paper uses an econometric model and the theory of optimum currency areas to look at whether what language grouping a migrant is from affects his or her migration decision. The paper also looks at what an inflexible labor market may mean for European Central Bank policymakers and the macroeconomic outlook of the eurozone.

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  • 2014-05

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Company X Collaborative Thesis: Supplier Financial Health

Description

This thesis discusses methodology used to assess the financial health of Company X's suppliers. Each suppliers' industry characteristics and key risk exposures are identified using the Porter's Five Forces. Along

This thesis discusses methodology used to assess the financial health of Company X's suppliers. Each suppliers' industry characteristics and key risk exposures are identified using the Porter's Five Forces. Along with qualitative analysis, financial data is analyzed with the Altman Z-Scores, forecasted financial statements, and comparative ratio analysis. The focus is narrowed down throughout the process to enable further investigation on Supplier E and the semiconductor-memory industry.The procedure and results of the analysis lead to the final recommendation to Company X on how it should assess the financial health of suppliers in the semiconductor-memory industry, and possibly other industries, using our methodology.

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Date Created
  • 2014-05

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Preferences for Group Risk and Inequality

Description

Economists, political philosophers, and others have often characterized social preferences regarding inequality by imagining a hypothetical choice of distributions behind "a veil of ignorance". Recent behavioral economics work has shown

Economists, political philosophers, and others have often characterized social preferences regarding inequality by imagining a hypothetical choice of distributions behind "a veil of ignorance". Recent behavioral economics work has shown that subjects care about equality of outcomes, and are willing to sacrifice, in experimental contexts, some amount of personal gain in order to achieve greater equality. We review some of this literature and then conduct an experiment of our own, comparing subjects' choices in two risky situations, one being a choice for a purely individualized lottery for themselves, and the other a choice among possible distributions to members of a randomly selected group. We find that choosing in the group situation makes subjects significantly more risk averse than when choosing an individual lottery. This supports the hypothesis that an additional preference for equality exists alongside ordinary risk aversion, and that in a hypothetical "veil of ignorance" scenario, such preferences may make subjects significantly more averse to unequal distributions of rewards than can be explained by risk aversion alone.

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Date Created
  • 2014-05

Avoidance Behaviour to Swine Flu

Description

Did the amount of media attention to the H1N1 flu or the information that the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) disseminates about the H1N1 flu, influence individuals' decisions to avoid

Did the amount of media attention to the H1N1 flu or the information that the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) disseminates about the H1N1 flu, influence individuals' decisions to avoid public locations during the 2009-2010 H1N1 Influenza pandemic? I investigate this question using weekly-confirmed H1N1 cases from the CDC, the American Time Use Survey (ATUS), and the Google Trends weekly search volume index for certain key terms. I found that individuals did exhibit some avoidance behaviour during the flu pandemic in response to the CDC data, but not the measures of media attention. However, the magnitudes of these adjustments are small in comparison to other measures of avoidance behaviour, such as reduced time in public during extreme weather events.

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Date Created
  • 2013-12

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The Impact of Economic Sanctions on Refugee Flight: An Econometric Analysis

Description

While the negative humanitarian effects of sanctions are widely known, scholars and policymakers often assume these costs are geographically localized. This research questions these assertions by examining the relationship between

While the negative humanitarian effects of sanctions are widely known, scholars and policymakers often assume these costs are geographically localized. This research questions these assertions by examining the relationship between economic sanctions and refugee flight. I argue that the imposition of sanctions produces refugees for two reasons. First, in the face of rising prices and stagnant wages, people are forced to leave in order to survive. Second, sanctions increase the level of state-sponsored repression, forcing refugees to flee political violence. The empirical results offer initial support for this theory and suggest that sanctions may promote a contagion effect that could have negative consequences for regional economic and political stability.

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Date Created
  • 2014-05

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A Civil War, a Sectarian War and a Proxy War: Problems of Negotiated Settlement in the Syrian Civil War

Description

This paper examines the Syrian Civil War using seven different civil war settlement theories in order to assess the likelihood of a negotiated settlement ending the conflict. The costs of

This paper examines the Syrian Civil War using seven different civil war settlement theories in order to assess the likelihood of a negotiated settlement ending the conflict. The costs of war, balance of power, domestic political institutions, ethnic identity, divisibility of stakes, veto player, and credible commitment theories were used in a multi-perspective analysis of the Syrian Civil War and the possibility of a peace settlement. It was found that all of the theories except for costs of war and balance of power predict that a negotiated settlement is unlikely to resolve the conflict. Although the Syrian government and the Syrian National Coalition are currently engaged in diplomatic negotiations through the Geneva II conference, both sides are unwilling to compromise on the underlying grievances driving the conflict. This paper ultimately highlights some of the problems inhibiting a negotiated settlement in the Syrian Civil War. These obstacles include: rival ethno-religious identities of combatants, lack of democratic institutions in Syria, indivisibility of stakes in which combatants are fighting for, number of veto player combatant groups active in Syria, and the lack of a credible third party to monitor and enforce a peace settlement.

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Date Created
  • 2014-05

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The Decision Behavior of Ant Colonies in Response to an Ebbinghaus Illusion

Description

Evolutionary theory predicts that animal behavior is generally governed by decision rules (heuristics) which adhere to ecological rationality: the tendency to make decisions that maximize fitness in most situations the

Evolutionary theory predicts that animal behavior is generally governed by decision rules (heuristics) which adhere to ecological rationality: the tendency to make decisions that maximize fitness in most situations the animal encounters. However, the particular heuristics used by ant colonies of the genus Temnothorax and their propensity towards ecological rationality are up for debate. These ants are adept at choosing a nest site, making a collective decision based on complex interactions between the many individual choices made by workers. Colonies will migrate between nests either upon the destruction of their current home or the discovery of a sufficiently superior nest. This study offers a descriptive analysis of the heuristics potentially used in nest-site decision-making. Colonies were offered a choice of nests characterized by the Ebbinghaus Illusion: a perceptual illusion which effectively causes the viewer to perceive a circle as larger when it is surrounded by small circles than when that same circle is surrounded by large circles. Colonies were separated into two conditions: in one, they were given the option to move to a high-quality nest surrounded by poor-quality nests, and in the other they were given the option to move to a high-quality nest surrounded by medium-quality nests. The colonies in the poor condition were found to be more likely to move to the good nest than were colonies in the medium condition at a statistically significant level. That is, they responded to the Ebbinghaus Effect in the way that is normally expected. This result was discussed in terms of its implications for the ecological rationality of the nest-site choice behavior of these ants.

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Date Created
  • 2014-05