Skip to main content Accessibility help

Democratic Norms Remain Stronger than Ethnic Ties: Defending “Foreign Interventions and Secessionist Movements”

  • Louis Bélanger (a1), Érick Duchesne (a1) and Jonathan Paquin (a2)


Abstract. This article is a response to Stephen Saideman's criticism of our research findings on third state intervention in secessionist crises, which was published in this journal in 2005. Here we defend our methodology and the validity of our results. We also explain why, in our view, Saideman's criticisms and the alternative research design that he offers are seriously questionable. More specifically, our reply focuses on his problematic case selection and on his measurement of ethnic ties, which is methodologically inconsistent and biased.

Résumé. Cet article constitue une réponse à la critique de Stephen Saideman concernant nos résultats de recherche, paru dans cette revue en 2005, sur les interventions des États tiers dans les crises sécessionnistes. Nous défendons ici notre méthode et la validité de nos résultats. Nous expliquons aussi pourquoi, selon nous, il est possible de remettre en question les critiques et le devis de recherche de Saideman. Plus précisément, notre réponse se concentre sur sa sélection de cas douteuse et sa mesure des liens ethniques, puisque nous jugeons celle-ci méthodologiquement incorrecte et biaisée.


Corresponding author

Louis Bélanger, Professor, Political Science Department and Institut Québécois des hautes études internationales, Université Laval, Québec, Québec, Canada G1K 7P4;
Érick Duchesne, Associate Professor, Political Science Department and Institut Québécois des hautes études internationales, Université Laval, Québec, Québec, Canada G1K 7P4;
Jonathan Paquin, Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science, King's University College, University of Western Ontario, 266 Epworth Avenue, London, Ontario, Canada N6A 2M3;


Hide All


Adcock, Robert and David Collier. 2001. “Measurement Validity: A Shared Standard for Qualitative and Quantitative Research.” American Political Science Review 95: 52946.
Amenta, Edwin. 2003. “What We Know about the Development of Social Policy: Comparative and Historical Research in Comparative Perspective.” In Comparative Historical Analysis in the Social Sciences, ed. James Mahoney and Dietrich Rueschemeyer. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Barton, Allen H. 1955. “The Concept of Property-Space in Social Research.” In Language of Social Research, ed. Paul F. Lazarsfeld and Morris Rosenberg. Glencoe: Free Press.
Bélanger, Louis, Érick Duchesne and Jonathan Paquin. 2005. “Foreign Intervention and Secessionist Movements: The Democratic Factor.” Canadian Journal of Political Science 38: 43662.
Carment, David, Patrick James and Zeynep Taydas. 2006. Who Intervenes? Ethnic Conflict and Interstate Crisis. Columbus: Ohio State University Press.
Goertz, Gary. 2006. Social Science Concepts: A User's Guide. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Gujurati, Damodar N. 2003. Basic Econometrics. 4th ed. Montreal: McGraw Hill.
Heraclides, Alexis. 1991. The Self-determination of Minorities in International Politics. Portland: Frank Cass.
Horowitz, Donald L. 2000. Ethnic Groups in Conflict. Berkeley: University of California Press.
King, Gary, Robert O. Keohane and Sidney Verba. 1994. Designing Social Inquiry: Scientific Inference in Qualitative Research. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Minorities at Risk. 2003. Minorities at Risk Dataset Users Manual, 030703. (March 14, 2007).
Saideman, Stephen. 1998. “Is Pandora's Box Half Empty or Half Full? The Limited Virulence of Secessionism and the Domestic Sources of Disintegration.” In The International Spread of Ethnic Conflicts, ed. David A. Lake and Donald Rothchild. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Saideman, Stephen. 2007. “Ties versus Institutions: Revisiting Foreign Interventions and Secessionist Movements.” Canadian Journal of Political Science 40: 3.
Young, Robert A. 1994. “How Do Peaceful Secessions Happen?Canadian Journal of Political Science 27: 77392.


Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed