Blog entries related to academic conference and workshop participations

MPSA panel on EU Legislative Politics

Together with Bjorn Hoyland from the University of Oslo, I organized and acted as discussant for a panel on 'Legislative Politics in the European Union' at this year's Annual Conference of the Midwest Political Science Association (MPSA) in Chicago. The panel line-up with summaries of the papers is given below and some of the presented papers are available for download from the online archive of the conference.

8-1 Legislative Politics in the European Union
Date: Friday, April 13 10:25 am
Chair(s): Heike Kluever, Nuffield College University of Oxford

  • Non-linear Growth Effects of Public Debt: New Evidence for the Euro Area.
    Panel threshold estimation on EMU countries to determine optimal debt levels, after which the impact of debt on growth becomes harmful. Such optimal levels can be supported and lie between 65% and 95% debt to GDP level.
    Anja Baum, University of Cambridge
    Cristina Checherita, European Central Bank
    Philipp Rother, (ECB) European Central Bank
  • Domestic Scrutiny of European Union Politics: Between Whistle Blowing and Opposition Control.
    This paper explains why some European law proposals are subject to scrutiny by national parliaments while others go unchecked. We compiled a dataset which comprises scrutiny information for more than ten member states from 2006-2011.
    Daniel Finke, University of Heidelberg
  • The Scheduling Power of the EU Presidency.
    This study investigates whether the Presidency is able to direct the political attention of the Council by emphasizing and de-emphasizing policy issues, relying on new data about the meeting frequency of working parties between 2000-2010.
    Frank Haege, University of Limerick
  • Allocation of Committee Reports in the European Parliament.
    We analyze the allocation of committee reports in the EP. We find a two-stage process where MEPs self-select into the pool of potential candidates and party loyalty determines the share of reports allocated to the candidates in the pool.
    Bjorn Hoyland, University of Oslo
  • Encouraging Party Cohesion in the European Parliament: Party Group Coordinators as a Decentralized Whipping System.
    The European Parliament is a harsh environment for political parties. In this paper we argue that a group of, relatively unknown actors, party group coordinators, provide a key part of the puzzle of political group institutionalization in the EP.
    Gail McElroy, Trinity College, Dublin
    Antoine Yoshinaka, American University
    Shaun Bowler, University of California, Riverside

Frank Haege, University of Limerick
Bjorn Hoyland, University of Oslo

Biology and Political Science panel at ECPR conference

Together with Dimiter Toshkov (Leiden University), I organised and chaired a panel on Biology and Political Science at this year's ECPR conference in Reykjavik. Some of the presented papers are available for download here

Panel abstract
Recent years have seen a growing cross-fertilization between the natural and social sciences. The increasing convergence of conceptual, theoretical, and methodological toolkits (e.g. network analysis, game theory, and statistical models) fosters the generation of such interdisciplinary insights. This panel is devoted to work that crosses the disciplinary boundaries between biology and political science; either by applying biological theories and methods to political science problems or by applying political theories and methods to topics in biology. Examples of such work include, but are not limited to, the following topics: Population ecology approaches to the study of political institutions and organizations; evolutionary dynamics of the diffusion of policies and ideas; genetic effects on political attitudes; evolutionary causes of international and domestic conflict; collective decision-making in animal groups; development and maintenance of social institutions in animal groups; evolution of cooperation and conflict in general.

Papers and authors

  • Evolutionary Institutionalism – Evolutionary Concepts in Institutional Analysis
    Cathleen  BOCHMANN (Dresden University of Technology)
  • From Cells to States: A Unifying Framework of Social Relativity
    Shade  SHUTTERS (Arizona State University)
    Matus  HALAS (Charles University)
  • Independence and Interdependence: Lessons from the Hive
    Christian  LIST (London School of Economics and Political Science)
    Adrian  VERMEULE (Harvard University)
  • The Physiological Basis of Political Temperaments
    John  HIBBING (University of Nebraska - Lincoln)
    John  ALFORD (Rice University)
    Kevin  SMITH (University of Nebraska - Lincoln)
  • Understanding Emotional Priming Effects through Psychophysiology
    Peter  FOLEY (California Institute of Technology)
    R. Michael  ALVAREZ (California Institute of Technology)
     Ralph  ADOLPHS (California Institute of Technology)
  • Do Psychological Traits Mediate the Relationship Between Genes and Political Participation? (tabled paper)
    Christopher  DAWES (University of California - San Diego)

Presentation of agent-based model of decision-making duration at ECPR conference

I presented a paper on 'The Duration of Multilateral Negotiations in the Council of the European Union' at this year's ECPR General Conference in Reykjavik (25-27 August). The paper formed part of the Computer Simulation and Agent Based Modelling in Political Science panel. The mainly theoretical paper describes an agent-based model of coalition-building that allows the generation of direct hypotheses about the effects of preference configurations, impatience levels, and group size on decision-making duration. The presentation and paper is available here.

EUSA presentation on Council's policy-agenda

The biennial conference of the European Union Studies Association (EUSA) took place on 3-5 March in Boston. I presented a paper on the Council's policy-agenda, relying on a new, comprehensive dataset on the timing and length of Council working party meetings between 2000 and 2008 to map the allocation of the Council's political attention across policy-areas and over time. The paper and the presentation are available on my research page.

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