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    Will vaccine mandates boost the economy? Economists think so

Will vaccine mandates boost the economy? Economists think so

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A survey explored US economists’ views on President Biden’s vaccine mandates. Will the mandates promote a faster and stronger economic recovery? Romesh Vaitilingam writes that the 42 economists who took part in the survey were unanimous in replying “yes”, with many adding nuanced comments. 

Following the Biden administration’s announcement of its intention to require that anyone at a firm with more […]

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    Social justice themed sermons from civic-minded clergy can push churchgoers towards greater activism to improve racial equality

Social justice themed sermons from civic-minded clergy can push churchgoers towards greater activism to improve racial equality

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Religion plays an important role in the lives of many Americans. But what role does religion and religious institutions play in motivating Americans to participate in politics? In their new book, R. Khari Brown, Ronald E. Brown, and James S. Jackson look at the role the spiritual and political efforts made by churches to improve human rights. They find […]

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    Supreme Court justices are more likely to borrow language from interest group briefs when it will go unnoticed.

Supreme Court justices are more likely to borrow language from interest group briefs when it will go unnoticed.

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In recent decades, the Supreme Court has been seen as increasingly as a political as well as a legal institution, with justices’ partisan ideologies informing their decision-making. In new research, Kayla Canelo examines how justices reference and cite friend-of-the-Court or amicus curiae briefs from interest groups in their majority opinions. She finds that justices are more likely to borrow […]

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    Biden’s post-Afghanistan foreign policy pragmatism may be wishful thinking given the history of hubris in American leadership

Biden’s post-Afghanistan foreign policy pragmatism may be wishful thinking given the history of hubris in American leadership

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Completing the withdrawal from Afghanistan is a major foreign policy milestone in the first year of the Biden presidency. Is it promising, perilous – or pending? Ron Pruessen considers “over-the-horizon” possibilities in light of the foreign policy hubris of presidents past.

August 31, 2021: “Last night in Kabul,” President Joe Biden announced, “the United States ended 20 years of war […]

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    Book Review: The New Age of Empire: How Colonialism and Racism Still Rule the World by Kehinde Andrews

Book Review: The New Age of Empire: How Colonialism and Racism Still Rule the World by Kehinde Andrews

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In The New Age of Empire: How Colonialism and Racism Still Rule the World, Kehinde Andrews explores how the intellectual, political and economic frameworks inherited from colonialism are still governing today’s world, resulting in a new age of empire that perpetuates racism, white supremacy and global economic inequalities. This compact and comprehensive book challenges the grand narratives of the Enlightenment, […]

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    Book Review: Causal Inference: The Mixtape by Scott Cunningham

Book Review: Causal Inference: The Mixtape by Scott Cunningham

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In Causal Inference: The Mixtape, Scott Cunningham offers a new guide to methods for determining cause and effect in the social sciences. In summarising, systematising and prioritising methodological tools for researchers, this book will be of use to all social scientists looking to validate their quantitative findings, recommends Simeon Mitropolitski. 

Causal Inference: The Mixtape. Scott Cunningham. Yale University Press. 2021.

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The other merchants of doubt: big oil’s economists

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Climate change is no longer a distant threat. Today climate change-induced disasters—smoke-filled air, freak floods, and huge storms—have become routine events. But how did we get here if scientists have been warning for decades of the impending crisis? Benjamin Franta writes that oil companies used their economic power to delay action, even hiring economists to produce reports saying climate action […]

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    Political polarization and negative campaign ads may have increased turnout in presidential elections

Political polarization and negative campaign ads may have increased turnout in presidential elections

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The 1964 election marked the beginning of a prolonged decline in presidential election turnout lasting through the 1990s. Recent analysis of American presidential election turnout from 1952 to 2020, however, reveals an increase previously expected by election scholars. In new research, Francine Romero and David Romero find that the downturn, while real, masked phenomena which were, in the background, […]

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    For some justice system-involved young people, shorter case processing times can reduce their chance of re-arrest

For some justice system-involved young people, shorter case processing times can reduce their chance of re-arrest

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In the US juvenile justice system, the time that young people wait between arrest or referral to the final outcome of their case is largely unregulated. In new research, Abigail Novak and Elizabeth Hartsell examine the effects of case processing time on youth re-arrest rates. They find that context is important: females and low-risk youth on diversion, and detained […]

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    Facing reduced revenues because of COVID-19, many local governments ignored best practices and returned to strategies from past recessions to make cuts.

Facing reduced revenues because of COVID-19, many local governments ignored best practices and returned to strategies from past recessions to make cuts.

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In the spring of 2020, in addition to the COVID-19 public health emergency, US state governments were also facing budgetary crises as revenue sources such as sales and fees fell as lockdowns began. Using North Carolina as a case study, Whitney Afonso looks at municipalities’ budget strategies in the face of falling revenues. Rather than following best practice by […]

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