Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-684899dbb8-ct24h Total loading time: 0.288 Render date: 2022-05-23T19:02:17.627Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "useRatesEcommerce": false, "useNewApi": true }

Reconciling the Theoretical and Empirical Study of International Norms: A New Approach to Measurement

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  19 October 2020

TYLER GIRARD*
Affiliation:
The University of Western Ontario
*
Tyler Girard, PhD Candidate, Department of Political Science, The University of Western Ontario, tgirard2@uwo.ca.

Abstract

Despite extensive research on international norms, our approach to measurement has not kept pace with theoretical advancements. Existing research often relies on single indicators to facilitate cross-national analysis or employs case-study designs that provide greater nuance but restricted scope. Given these limitations, this note argues that item-response theory (IRT) provides a framework for strengthening the link between our theoretical understanding of norms and empirical measurement of norm adoption. In turn, I develop a modified Bayesian model with substantively informed dynamic priors. The proposed approach is evaluated with the lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) equality norm, using 13 policies and laws across 196 countries (1990–2017). The results are broadly consistent with theoretical expectations while also providing new empirical evidence on the evolution of the norm across space and time. This note highlights the significant potential in greater interaction between both latent measurement approaches and scholarship on international norms.

Type
Letter
Copyright
© The Author(s), 2020. Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of the American Political Science Association

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.)

Footnotes

Previous versions of the paper were presented at the 2019 Meeting of the Canadian Political Science Association and the 2019 Meeting of the British International Studies Association. The author would especially like to thank Dave Armstrong, Adam Enders, Erin Hannah, Adam Harmes, and Matt Lebo for invaluable support, as well as the anonymous reviewers and the editors of APSR for their insightful comments and suggestions that substantially improved the paper. Replication materials are available at the American Political Science Review Dataverse: https://doi.org/10.7910/DVN/XS4P50.

References

Bloomfield, Alan. 2016. “Norm Antipreneurs and Theorising Resistance to Normative Change.” Review of International Studies 42 (2): 310333.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Carroll, Aengus. 2016. State-Sponsored Homophobia 2016: A World Survey of Sexual Orientation Laws: Criminalization, Protection, and Recognition. Geneva: International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, and Intersex Association.Google Scholar
Carroll, Aengus, and Mendos, Lucas Ramon. 2017. State-Sponsored Homophobia 2017: A World Survey of Sexual Orientation Laws: Criminalization, Protection, and Recognition. Geneva: International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, and Intersex Association.Google Scholar
Clapp, Jennifer, and Swanston, Linda. 2009. “Doing Away With Plastic Shopping Bags: International Patterns of Norm Emergence and Policy Implementation.” Environmental Politics 18 (3): 315332.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Cloward, Karisa. 2016. When Norms Collide: Local Responses to Activism against Female Genital Mutilation and Early Marriage. Oxford: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fariss, Christopher J. 2014. “Respect for Human Rights has Improved over Time: Modeling the Changing Standard of Accountability.” American Political Science Review 108 (2): 297318.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Fariss, Christopher J. 2018. “The Changing Standard of Accountability and the Positive Relationship between Human Rights Treaty Ratification and Compliance.” British Journal of Political Science 48 (1): 239271.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Finnemore, Martha, and Sikkink, Kathryn. 1998. “International Norm Dynamics and Political Change.” International Organization 52 (4): 887917.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gelman, Andrew, Carlin, John B., Stern, Hal S., Dunson, David B., Vehtari, Aki, and Rubin, Donald B.. 2013. Bayesian Data Analysis. Boca Raton, FL: Chapman and Hall/CRC.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gelman, Andrew, and Rubin, Donald B.. 1992. “Inference from Iterative Simulation Using Multiple Sequences.” Statistical Science 7 (4): 457472.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gest, Justin, Armstrong, Carolyn, Carolan, Elizabeth, Fox, Elliott, Holzer, Vanessa, McLellan, Tim, Mogan, Audrey Cherryl, and Talib, Meher. 2013. “Tracking the Process of International Norm Emergence: A Comparative Analysis of Six Agendas and Emerging Migrants’ Rights.” Global Governance 19 (2): 153186.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Goemans, Henk E., Gleditsch, Kristian Skrede, and Chiozza, Giacomo. 2009. “Introducing Archigos: A Dataset of Political Leaders.” Journal of Peace Research 46 (2): 269283.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Goertz, Gary, and Diehl, Paul F.. 1992. “Toward a Theory of International Norms: Some Conceptual and Measurement Issues.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 36 (4): 634664.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Keck, Margaret, and Sikkink, Kathryn. 1998. Activists beyond Borders: Transnational Advocacy Networks in World Politics. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.Google Scholar
Kollman, Kelly. 2007. “Same-Sex Unions: The Globalization of an Idea.” International Studies Quarterly 51 (2): 329357.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kollman, Kelly. 2009. “European Institutions, Transnational Networks and National Same-Sex Unions Policy: When Soft Law Hits Harder.” Contemporary Politics 15 (1): 3753.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
March, James G., and Olsen, Johan P.. 1998. “The Institutional Dynamics of International Political Orders.” International Organization 52 (4): 943969.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Martin, Andrew D., and Quinn, Kevin M.. 2002. “Dynamic Ideal Point Estimation via Markov Chain Monte Carlo for the US Supreme Court, 1953–1999.” Political Analysis 10 (2): 134153.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mendos, Lucas Ramon. 2019. State-Sponsored Homophobia 2019: Global Legislation Overview Update. Geneva: International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, and Intersex Association.Google Scholar
Nuñez-Mietz, Fernando G., and Iommi, Lucrecia García. 2017. “Can Transnational Norm Advocacy Undermine Internalization? Explaining Immunization against LGBT Rights in Uganda.” International Studies Quarterly 61 (1): 196209.Google Scholar
Orchard, Phil. 2016. “The Dawn of International Refugee Protection: States, Tacit Cooperation and Non-Extradition.” Journal of Refugee Studies 30 (2): 282300.Google Scholar
Plummer, Martyn. 2017. JAGS: A Program for Analysis of Bayesian Graphical Models Using Gibbs Sampling. https://sourceforge.net/projects/mcmc-jags/.Google Scholar
Risse, Thomas, Ropp, Stephen C., and Sikkink, Kathryn, eds. 1999. The Power of Human Rights: International Norms and Domestic Change. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Simmons, Beth A., and Jo, Hyeran. 2019. “Measuring Norms and Normative Contestation: The Case of International Criminal Law.” Journal of Global Security Studies 4 (1): 1836.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Sommerer, Thomas, and Tallberg, Jonas. 2019. “Diffusion across International Organizations: Connectivity and Convergence.” International Organization 73 (2): 399433.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Symons, Jonathan, and Altman, Dennis. 2015. “International Norm Polarization: Sexuality as a Subject of Human Rights Protection.” International Theory 7 (1): 6195.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Supplementary material: PDF

Girard supplementary material

Girard supplementary material

Download Girard supplementary material(PDF)
PDF 512 KB
Supplementary material: Link

Girard Dataset

Link
1
Cited by

Save article to Kindle

To save this article 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.

Reconciling the Theoretical and Empirical Study of International Norms: A New Approach to Measurement
Available formats
×

Save article to Dropbox

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

Reconciling the Theoretical and Empirical Study of International Norms: A New Approach to Measurement
Available formats
×

Save article to Google Drive

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

Reconciling the Theoretical and Empirical Study of International Norms: A New Approach to Measurement
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response

Please enter your response.

Your details

Please enter a valid email address.

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *