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    Hocking, Brian 1982. Patronage, pleasure‐trips or para‐diplomacy? Australian parliamentarians at the United Nations. Australian Outlook, Vol. 36, Issue. 2, p. 22.


One small step for functionalism: UN participation and Congressional attitude change


As an explanation of organizational growth at the international level, functionalism postulates that people who become personally involved in the activities of international agencies will develop attitudes more favorable to international cooperation. Analysis of speeches by United States Congressmen and Senators before and after serving as delegates to the UN General Assembly indicates that significant attitudinal change may occur. At the cognitive level, Congressmen tend to pay more attention to the UN than before. The majority also experience positive change in affect toward the UN. In addition, the data provide evidence of convergence toward a mean value as participants initially holding the more extreme views (positive or negative) generally express more moderate opinions as a result of the UN experience. The fact that such a leveling of expectations occurs at a significantly higher level of favorability gives modest support to the functionalist thesis.

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Andrew W. Green , “Mitrany Reread with the Help of Haas and Sewell,” Journal of Common Market Studies, Vol. 8 (091969): 5069

Wolf, “International Organization and Attitude Change: A Re-Examination of the Functionalist Approach,” International Organization, Vol. 27 (Summer1973): 350

Chadwick F. Alger , “United Nations Participation as a Learning Experience,” Public Opinion Quarterly, Vol. 27 (Fall1963): 411–26

Henry H. Kerr Jr, “Changing Attitudes Through International Participation: European Parliamentarians and Integration,” International Organization, Vol. 27 (Winter1973): 4583

Harold K. Jacobson , “Deriving Data from Delegates to International Assemblies,” International Organization, Vol. 21 (Summer1967): 592613

G. Matthew Bonham , “Participation in Regional Parliamentary Assemblies: Effects on Attitudes of Scandinavian Parliamentarians,” Journal of Common Market Studies, Vol. 8 (061970): 325

Lawrence Scheinman and Werner Feld , “The European Economic Community and National Civil Servants of Member States,” International Organization, Vol. 26, No. 1 (Winter1972): 121–35 (This finds some evidence of a more “European” orientation)

Keith Smith , “The European Economic Community and National Civil Servants of the Member States-A Comment,” International Organization, Vol. 27, No. 4 (Autumn1973): 563–68 (Dutch respondents had become more realistic, not more “Europeanized”)

William R. Pendergast , “Roles and Attitudes of French and Italian Delegates to the European Community,” International Organization, Vol. 30, No. 4 (Autumn1976); 669–77 (Respondents showed “almost total absence of increased support for integration,” but nevertheless “shared a commitment to succeed in the task of common policy elaboration,” and “favor the expansion of Community competence.”)

Werner Feld and John K. Wildgen , “Electoral Ambitions and European Integration,” International Organization, Vol. 29, No. 2 (Spring1975); 447–68

Donald P. Warwick , “Transnational Participation and International Peace,” International Organization, Vol. 25 (Summer1971): 307

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International Organization
  • ISSN: 0020-8183
  • EISSN: 1531-5088
  • URL: /core/journals/international-organization
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