Comparative Political Studies, Volume 45, Number 10, October 2012

CPS Okt 2012Articles
 
Linguistic Recognition as a Source of Confidence in the Justice System
Amy H. Liu and Vanessa A. Baird (pp.1203-1229)
Abstract
How does linguistic recognition in the courtroom affect popular confidence in the justice system among minorities? The authors argue (a) the recognition of either a minority language and/or a third-party’s language (lingua franca) during judicial proceedings increases confidence levels but (b) the use of a lingua franca is more effective. This is because minorities are more likely to favor an arrangement that levels the playing field by having everyone speak a lingua franca (relative fairness) than one that allows them to use their own language in a courtroom that is otherwise dominated by the majority language (absolute fairness). Using original data measuring the linguistic recognition in the judiciary, the authors find a significant and robust relationship between languages of the court and popular confidence in the justice system.
 
 
Amplifying Silence: Uncertainty and Control Parables in Contemporary China
Rachel E. Stern and Jonathan Hassid (pp. 1230-1254)
Abstract
Well-known tools of state coercion, such as administrative punishment, imprisonment, and violence,
affect far fewer than 1% of Chinese journalists and lawyers. What, then, keeps the other 99% in line?
Building on work detailing control strategies in illiberal states, the authors suggest that the answer is
more complicated than the usual story of heavy-handed repression. Instead, deep-rooted
uncertainty about the boundaries of permissible political action magnifies the effect of each
crackdown. Unsure of the limits of state tolerance, lawyers and journalists frequently self-censor,
effectively controlling themselves. But self-censorship does not always mean total retreat from
political concerns. Rather, didactic stories about transgression help the politically inclined map the
gray zone between (relatively) safe and unacceptably risky choices. For all but the most optimistic
risk takers, these stories—which we call control parables—harden limits on activism by illustrating a
set of prescriptions designed to prevent future clashes with authority. The rules for daily behavior, in
short, are not handed down from the pinnacle of the state but jointly written (and rewritten) by
Chinese public professionals and their government overseers.
 
 
The Effect of Elections on Public Opinion Toward Democracy: Evidence From
Longitudinal Survey Research in Algeria
Michael D. H. Robbins and Mark Tessler (pp. 1255-1276)
Abstract
Given the importance of developing a democratic culture for the long-term survival of democracy, it
is crucial to understand whether and how public support for democracy changes over time in
response to different events, particularly those that may contribute to democratization. Elections are
a key institution associated with democracy; but elections are also found in most nondemocratic
regimes, raising questions about whether electoral experiences affect the way that ordinary citizens
think about democracy. The present article uses original survey data collected in Algeria in 2002,
2004, and 2006 to investigate this question. It finds that individuals who favor platforms, ideological
orientations, or candidates who are excluded from participation in an election and/or believe that an
election has not been free and fair have lower levels of support for democracy after the election than
other members of society.
 
 
Diffusion of Regulatory Impact Analysis Among OECD and EU Member States
Fabrizio De Francesco (pp. 1277-1305)
Abstract
With the exception of few comparative case studies, the literature on regulatory reform and
regulatory impact analysis (RIA) tends to focus on internal political actors, activities, and processes.
Furthermore, empirical analyses of new public management have overlooked the dynamics of
communications among networks of administrative reformers. This article fills these gaps, presenting
results of an event history analysis on the diffusion of RIA. It probes rationales for the origin of RIA
and administrative capacity explanations in combination with variables referring to international and
transnational communication channels of administrative reforms. A hypothesis based on legal origin
is also tested. The findings show that the decision to adopt RIA rests on transnational networks as
well as administrative variables such as government expenditure and legal origin.