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War and democratic constraint : how the public influences foreign policy

Author: Matthew Baum; Philip B K Potter
Publisher: Princeton, New Jersey : Princeton University Press, [2015]
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
"Why do some democracies reflect their citizens' foreign policy preferences better than others? What roles do the media, political parties, and the electoral system play in a democracy's decision to join or avoid a war? War and Democratic Constraint shows that the key to how a government determines foreign policy rests on the transmission and availability of information. Citizens successfully hold their democratic  Read more...
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Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Matthew Baum; Philip B K Potter
ISBN: 9780691164984 0691164983 9780691165233 0691165238
OCLC Number: 894625400
Awards: Shortlisted for Choice Magazine Outstanding Reference/Academic Book Award 2015.
Description: xiv, 258 pages ; 24 cm
Contents: Introduction : Looking for democratic constraint : Why democratic institutions matter ; The role of political information within democracies ; The recipe for democratic constraint ; Effects on what? ; Moving forward --
Democracies are not created equal: a theory of democratic constraint : Information, accountability, and principal-agent problems ; An uninformed, inattentive electorate ; Political opposition as whistleblowers ; Media institutions and the transmission of information ; Hearing the whistleblowers: the importance of the press ; Bringing together information generation and transmission ; Foreign policy responsiveness and international conflict behavior ; Initiation and the democratic peace ; Reciprocation and audience costs ; Coalition formation ; Conclusion and next steps --
Democratic constraint, the democratic peace, and conflict initiation : Period and structure of analysis ; Measuring conflict initiation ; Measuring the extent of opposition with political parties ; Measuring media access ; Measuring press freedom ; Additional controls ; Results ; Democratic constraint among democracies ; Alternative measures of conflict ; The independent effects of opposition and access ; Appendix 1: Statistical tables and robustness tests ; Appendix 2: The role of the Internet --
Looking for audience costs in all the wrong places: constraint and reciprocation : Research design ; Results ; Unpacking militarized disputes ; Compellent threats ; The problem of perception ; Appendix: Statistical tables and robustness tests --
Willing and politically able: democratic constraint and coalition joining : Iraq (2003): Operation Iraqi Freedom ; Afghanistan (2001): Operation Enduring Freedom ; Appendix : Statistical tables and robustness tests --
Downs meets the press: how party systems shape the news : Mapping news content onto the Downsian Premise ; Cases and data ; Results ; 2004 and 2009 European Election Studies (EES) ; Appendix : Statistical tables, robustness tests and content analysis codebook --
Coalition stories: cases from the Iraq Coalition : Case selection ; The United Kingdom ; Spain ; Poland ; Germany --
Conclusion : Information, constraint, and democratic foreign policy : Policy implications ; Recipe for a watchdog press: some prescriptions for media ownership ; Technological change, the Internet, and satellite television ; Moving forward.
Responsibility: Matthew A. Baum, Philip B.K. Potter.

Abstract:

"Why do some democracies reflect their citizens' foreign policy preferences better than others? What roles do the media, political parties, and the electoral system play in a democracy's decision to join or avoid a war? War and Democratic Constraint shows that the key to how a government determines foreign policy rests on the transmission and availability of information. Citizens successfully hold their democratic governments accountable and a distinctive foreign policy emerges when two vital institutions--a diverse and independent political opposition and a robust media--are present to make timely information accessible. Matthew Baum and Philip Potter demonstrate that there must first be a politically potent opposition that can blow the whistle when a leader missteps. This counteracts leaders' incentives to obscure and misrepresent. Second, healthy media institutions must be in place and widely accessible in order to relay information from whistle-blowers to the public. Baum and Potter explore this communication mechanism during three different phases of international conflicts: when states initiate wars, when they respond to challenges from other states, or when they join preexisting groups of actors engaged in conflicts. Examining recent wars, including those in Afghanistan and Iraq, War and Democratic Constraint links domestic politics and mass media to international relations in a brand-new way"--

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One of Choice's Outstanding Academic Titles for 2015 "[A] groundbreaking study."--Foreign Affairs "This scholarly book is an important contribution to the role of political communication in foreign Read more...

 
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