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Joshua Dyck on the Mobilizing Effect of Direct Democracy

By University at Buffalo Law School


Welcome to UBLaw Conversations, a production of University at Buffalo Law School, The State University of New York. Today is February 11, 2008, and I'm Jim Milles, Professor of Law and Director of the Law Library.
Our guests today are Joshua Dyck and Jim Gardner. Joshua Dyck is Assistant Professor at the University at Buffalo
Department of Political Science. Jim Gardner is Vice Dean for Academic Affairs and Joseph W. Belluck and Laura L. Aswad Professor of Civil Justice at the University at Buffalo Law School. They will be discussing Professor Dyck's paper, "Who is Mobilized by Direct Democracy?"


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Abstract: A number of recent studies find that direct democracy increases voter turnout. Whom does direct democracy mobilize to vote? From one perspective, voters mobilized by ballot initiative campaigns may reflect the partisan tenor of many ballot initiative elections. Alternatively, ballot initiatives might allow disaffected voters to fully express their policy preferences. Using a unique research design that incorporates neighborhood contextual variables with the California registered voter list, Professor Dyck examines the strong partisan effects that social context exerts on participation in ballot initiative elections. Additionally, he clarifies the way citizens are educated by initiatives. The findings demonstrate how partisan context mitigates the potential for direct democracy to mobilize from the middle.

he theme music is Baja Taxi by Brain Buckit, and is available through the Podsafe Music Network. Please join us again next time for another conversation from University at Buffalo Law School.

Full post as published by UBLaw on February 11, 2008 (boomark / email).

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