Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-59b7f5684b-z9m8x Total loading time: 0.564 Render date: 2022-10-05T09:07:24.412Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "useRatesEcommerce": false, "displayNetworkTab": true, "displayNetworkMapGraph": true, "useSa": true } hasContentIssue true

1 - Experimentation in Political Science

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 June 2012

James N. Druckman
Affiliation:
Northwestern University
Donald P. Green
Affiliation:
Yale University
James H. Kuklinski
Affiliation:
University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign
Arthur Lupia
Affiliation:
University of Michigan
James N. Druckman
Affiliation:
Northwestern University, Illinois
Donald P. Greene
Affiliation:
Yale University, Connecticut
James H. Kuklinski
Affiliation:
University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Arthur Lupia
Affiliation:
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
Get access

Summary

In his 1909 American Political Science Association presidential address, A. Lawrence Lowell (1910) advised the fledgling discipline against following the model of the natural sciences: “We are limited by the impossibility of experiment. Politics is an observational, not an experimental science…” (7). The lopsided ratio of observational to experimental studies in political science, over the one hundred years since Lowell's statement, arguably affirms his assessment. The next hundred years are likely to be different. The number and influence of experimental studies are growing rapidly as political scientists discover ways of using experimental techniques to illuminate political phenomena.

The growing interest in experimentation reflects the increasing value that the discipline places on causal inference and empirically guided theoretical refinement. Experiments facilitate causal inference through the transparency and content of their procedures, most notably the random assignment of observations (a.k.a. subjects or experimental participants) to treatment and control groups. Experiments also guide theoretical development by providing a means for pinpointing the effects of institutional rules, preference configurations, and other contextual factors that might be difficult to assess using other forms of inference. Most of all, experiments guide theory by providing stubborn facts – that is, reliable information about cause and effect that inspires and constrains theory.

Type
Chapter
Information
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2011

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

Bailenson, Jeremy N., Iyengar, Shanto, Yee, Nick, and Collins, Nathan A.. 2008. “Facial Similarity between Voters and Candidates Causes Influence.” Public Opinion Quarterly 72: 935–61.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Brody, Richard A., and Brownstein, Charles N.. 1975. “Experimentation and Simulation.” In Handbook of Political Science 7, eds. Greenstein, Fred I. and Polsby, Nelson. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley, 211–63.Google Scholar
Brown, Stephen R., and Melamed, Lawrence E.. 1990. Experimental Design and Analysis. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Campbell, Donald T. 1969. “Prospective: Artifact and Control.” In Artifact in Behavioral Research, eds. Rosenthal, Robert and Rosnow, Robert. New York: Academic Press, 264–86.Google Scholar
Cover, Albert D., and Brumberg, Bruce S.. 1982. “Baby Books and Ballots: The Impact of Congressional Mail on Constituent Opinion.” American Political Science Review 76: 347–59.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Dipboye, Robert L., and Flanagan, Michael F.. 1979. “Research Settings in Industrial and Organizational Psychology: Are Findings in the Field More Generalizable Than in the Laboratory?” American Psychologist 34: 141–50.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Druckman, Daniel. 1994. “Determinants of Compromising Behavior in Negotiation: A Meta-Analysis.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 38: 507–56.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Druckman, James N., Green, Donald P., Kuklinski, James H., and Lupia, Arthur. 2006. “The Growth and Development of Experimental Research Political Science.” American Political Science Review 100: 627–36.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Druckman, James N., and Lupia, Arthur. 2006. “Mind, Will, and Choice.” In The Oxford Handbook on Contextual Political Analysis, eds. Tilly, Charles and Goodin, Robert E.. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 97–113.Google Scholar
Druckman, James N., and McDermott, Rose. 2008. “Emotion and the Framing of Risky Choice.” Political Behavior 30: 297–321.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Eavey, Cheryl L., and Miller, Gary J.. 1984. “Bureaucratic Agenda Control: Imposition or Bargaining?” American Political Science Review 78: 719–33.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Eldersveld, Samuel J. 1956. “Experimental Propaganda Techniques and Voting Behavior.” American Political Science Review 50: 154–65.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Esterling, Kevin Michael, Lazer, David, and Neblo, Michael. 2009. “Means, Motive, and Opportunity in Becoming Informed about Politics: A Deliberative Field Experiment Involving Members of Congress and Their Constituents.” Unpublished paper, University of California, Riverside.Google Scholar
Falk, Armin, and Heckman, James J.. 2009. “Lab Experiments Are a Major Source of Knowledge in the Social Sciences.” Science 326: 535–38.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Ferraz, Claudio, and Finan, Frederico. 2008. “Exposing Corrupt Politicians: The Effects of Brazil's Publicly Released Audits on Electoral Outcomes.” Quarterly Journal of Economics 123: 703–45.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fowler, James H., and Schreiber, Darren. 2008. “Biology, Politics, and the Emerging Science of Human Nature.” Science 322: 912–14.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Fréchette, Guillaume, Kagel, John H., and Lehrer, Steven F.. 2003. “Bargaining in Legislatures.” American Political Science Review 97: 221–32.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Frohlich, Norman, and Oppenheimer, Joe A.. 1992. Choosing Justice: An Experimental Approach to Ethical Theory. Berkeley: University of California Press.Google Scholar
Gaines, Brian J., Kuklinski, James H., and Quirk, Paul J.. 2007. “The Logic of the Survey Experiment Reexamined.” Political Analysis 15: 1–20.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gerber, Alan S., and Green, Donald P.. 2000. “The Effects of Canvassing, Telephone Calls, and Direct Mail on Voter Turnout.” American Political Science Review 94: 653–63.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Geva, Nehemia, and Mintz, Alex. 1997. Decision-Making on War and Peace: The Cognitive-Rational Debate. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner.Google Scholar
Gilens, Martin. 1996. “‘Race Coding’ and White Opposition to Welfare.” American Political Science Review 90: 593–604.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gosnell, Harold F. 1926. “An Experiment in the Stimulation of Voting.” American Political Science Review 20: 869–74.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Green, Donald P. 1992. “The Price Elasticity of Mass Preferences.” American Political Science Review 86: 128–48.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Green, Donald P., and Gerber, Alan S.. 2002. “The Downstream Benefits of Experimentation.” Political Analysis 10: 394–402.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Greenberg, Jerald. 1987. “The College Sophomore as Guinea Pig: Setting the Record Straight.” Academy of Management Review 12: 157–59.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Guetzkow, Harold, and Valadez, Joseph J., eds. 1981. Simulated International Processes. Beverly Hills, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
Habyarimana, James, Humphreys, Macartan, Posner, Daniel, and Weinstein, Jeremy M.. 2007. “Why Does Ethnic Diversity Undermine Public Goods Provision?” American Political Science Review 101: 709–25.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Halpern, Sydney A. 2004. Lesser Harms: The Morality of Risk in Medical Research. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hauck, Robert J.-P. 2008. “Protecting Human Research Participants, IRBs, and Political Science Redux: Editor's Introduction.” PS: Political Science & Politics 41: 475–76.Google Scholar
Henrich, Joseph, Boyd, Robert, Bowles, Samuel, Camerer, Colin, Fehr, Ernst, and Gintis, Herbert, eds. 2004. Foundations of Human Society. Oxford: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Humphreys, Macartan, Posner, Daniel N., and Weinstein, Jeremy M.. 2002. “Ethnic Identity, Collective Action, and Conflict: An Experimental Approach.” Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Political Science Association, Boston.
Iyengar, Shanto, and Kinder, Donald R.. 1987. News That Matters: Television and American Opinion. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
Johnson, George. 2008. The Ten Most Beautiful Experiments. New York: Alfred A. Knopf.Google Scholar
Kardes, Frank R. 1996. “In Defense of Experimental Consumer Psychology.” Journal of Consumer Psychology 5: 279–96.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Keppel, Geoffrey, and Wickens, Thomas D.. 2004. Design and Analysis: A Researcher's Handbook. 4th ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson/Prentice Hall.Google Scholar
King, Gary, Keohane, Robert O., and Verba, Sidney. 1994. Designing Social Inquiry: Scientific Inference in Qualitative Research. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
Kühberger, Anton. 1998. “The Influence of Framing on Risky Decisions.” Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes 75: 23–55.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Levitt, Steven D., and List, John A.. 2007. “What Do Laboratory Experiments Measuring Social Preferences Tell Us about the Real World?” Journal of Economic Perspectives 21: 153–74.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lijphart, Arend. 1971. “Comparative Politics and the Comparative Method.” American Political Science Review 65: 682–93.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lodge, Milton, McGraw, Kathleen M., and Stroh, Patrick. 1989. “An Impression-Driven Model of Candidate Evaluation.” American Political Science Review 83: 399–419.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lodge, Milton, Steenbergen, Marco R., and Brau, Shawn. 1995. “The Responsive Voter: Campaign Information and the Dynamics of Candidate Evaluation.” American Political Science Review 89: 309–26.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lowell, A. Lawrence. 1910. “The Physiology of Politics.” American Political Science Review 4: 1–15.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mahoney, Robert, and Druckman, Daniel. 1975. “Simulation, Experimentation, and Context.” Simulation & Games 6: 235–70.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Malesky, Edmund J., and Samphantharak, Krislert. 2008. “Predictable Corruption and Firm Investment: Evidence from a Natural Experiment and Survey of Cambodian Entrepreneurs.” Quarterly Journal of Political Science 3: 227–67.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Miller, Gary J., Hammond, Thomas H., and Kile, Charles. 1996. “Bicameralism and the Core: An Experimental Test.” Legislative Studies Quarterly 21: 83–103.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Morton, Rebecca B. 1993. “Incomplete Information and Ideological Explanations of Platform Divergence.” American Political Science Review 87: 382–92.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Morton, Rebecca B., and Williams, Kenneth. 1999. “Information Asymmetries and Simultaneous versus Sequential Voting.” American Political Science Review 93: 51–67.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Morton, Rebecca B., and Williams, Kenneth C.. 2010. Experimental Political Science and the Study of Causality: From Nature to the Lab. New York: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ostrom, Elinor, Walker, James, and Gardner, Roy. 1992. “Covenants with and without a Sword.” American Political Science Review 86: 404–17.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Richardson, Liz, and John, Peter. 2009. “Is Lobbying Really Effective? A Field Experiment of Local Interest Group Tactics to Influence Elected Representatives in the UK.” Paper presented at the European Consortium for Political Research Joint Sessions, Lisbon, Portugal.
Riker, William H. 1967. “Bargaining in a Three-Person Game.” American Political Science Review 61: 642–56.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Roth, Alvin E. 1995. “Introduction to Experimental Economics.” In The Handbook of Experimental Economics, eds. Kagel, John H. and Roth, Alvin E.. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1–110.Google Scholar
Simon, Adam, and Sulkin, Tracy. 2001. “Habermas in the Lab: An Experimental Investigation of the Effects of Deliberation.” Political Psychology 22: 809–26.Google Scholar
Singer, Eleanor, and Levine, Felice J.. 2003. “Protection of Human Subjects of Research: Recent Developments and Future Prospects for the Social Sciences.” Public Opinion Quarterly 67: 148–64.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Smith, Vernon L. 1976. “Experimental Economics: Induced Value Theory.” American Economic Review 66: 274–79.Google Scholar
Sniderman, Paul M., Hagendoorn, Look, and Prior, Markus. 2004. “Predispositional Factors and Situational Triggers.” American Political Science Review 98: 35–50.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Wantchekon, Leonard. 2003. “Clientelism and Voting Behavior.” World Politics 55: 399–422.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
16
Cited by

Save book to Kindle

To save this book to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Available formats
×

Save book to Dropbox

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Available formats
×