Soc_5_Historical_Comparative_Nov_27_2007

Soc_5_Historical_Comparative_Nov_27_2007 - Comparative/...

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Unformatted text preview: Comparative/ Historical Methods Sociology 5 Irene Bloemraad November 27, 2007 Review: Coding coding: labeling, categorizing and sorting data to organize data & see patterns (quantitative or qualitative data) manifest content of a survey answer, document, overheard conversation etc. refers to concrete words used in the communication latent content instead is a researcher's identification (and imposition) of the underlying meaning to something MORE Review: Coding a code: a short word (or set of words) that identify a concept, a process or some other phenomenon of sociological interest closed coding: codes established prior to data analysis open coding: codes developed while looking at data codes are usually developed through a combination of inductive and deductive thinking Definitions Comparative case method the systematic analysis of a small number of cases usually NOT based on individuals, but rather organizations, countries, or social phenomena (e.g. revolutions, transitions to democracy) Definitions Historical comparative sociology use of history to examine how institutional structures and historical processes lead to outcomes configurational approach to social phenomena and theory researchers build or test theories AND build concepts/ typologies Types of Comparative Designs "most similar" research design - pick cases similar in a number of dimensions, thereby "controlling" for such differences, but which vary on a few key dimensions "most different" research design pick very different cases to see source of similarity despite difference US/Canada as Similar "Canada and the United States are as close economically and socially as any pair of countries in the world. The two nations share similar cultural traditions and enjoy comparable living standards. Both countries have highly educated and skilled workforces with similar industrial and occupational structures. Many of the same firms and unions operate on both sides of the border..." Card & Freeman (1993) US/Canada as Similar United States: Canada: "neoliberal" welfare "neoliberal" welfare state state post-industrial post-industrial service economy service economy highly educated, highly educated, diverse workforce diverse workforce pressures of pressures of globalization, globalization, outsourcing outsourcing Types of Comparative Analysis Mill's method of difference when two or more cases that are the same in most respects have different outcomes, you search for the key difference that likely helps explain the dis-similar outcome (linked to "most similar" case selection) Mill's Method of Difference Positive case features A B C Z outcome Y Negative case features A B C no Z outcome not Y Key US/Canada Difference Canada: Publicly funded, universal health care system available to all 0% uninsured United States: Some publicly funded health insurance for under 18, over 65 Private health insurance for most, via employers, private plans, etc. 15-27% uninsured Policy Differences affect Quality of Life for Low Paid Workers In the US: more financial strain, more psychological stress around health issues or medical emergencies, poorer health outcomes Story of Joey Harrison in Seattle Compare to Tara Wang in Vancouver Mill's Method of Difference Positive case features A B C Z outcome Y Negative case features A B C no Z outcome not Y Types of Comparative Analysis Mill's method of agreement when two or more cases differ in most respects, but still have a similar outcome, the element of commonality across the cases likely helps explain the similar outcome (often linked to "most different" case selection) Fourcade/Babb (2002) "The four countries we examined diverged on a number of critical characteristics, such as political regime, level of economic development, and cultural tradition regarding the role of the state versus the market. [Notwithstanding, they] converged toward a set of economic policies that emphasized the role of markets in economic regulation, promoted the free trade of goods and capital" and other neo-liberal ideas. (p.568) Mill's Method of Agreement Case 1 features A B C Z outcome Y outcome Y Case 2 features M N O Z Similar Neoliberal Outcomes Chile Inflation Social conflict Origins of ideas b. of p. crisis Neoliberalism Britain High Mexico Low Low France Medium Medium Tech. Yes Yes Hyper v. High High Political Political Tech. Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Importance of Balance of Payments Crisis across Cases "In all cases, acute balance-ofpayments crises demonstrated to local actors the impossibility of pursuing a nationalist economic policy in isolation from the broader international environment" (p.569) Mill's Method of Agreement Case 1 features A B C Z outcome Y outcome Y Case 2 features M N O Z Similar Neoliberal Outcomes Chile Inflation Social conflict Origins of ideas b. of p. crisis Neoliberalism Britain High Mexico Low Low France Medium Medium Tech. Yes Yes Hyper v. High High Political Political Tech. Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Different Paths to Neoliberalism "At the same time, our study suggests a very different dimension of cross-national variation--one, interestingly, that cuts across the dividing line between developed and developing countries... Chile and Britain exemplify... the "ideological road" to neoliberalism, in which neoliberal commitments were at once early, radical, and highly politicized. ...Mexico and France represent... a much more "pragmatic" transition." (p.570) Similar Neoliberal Outcomes Chile Inflation Social conflict Origins of ideas Business support transition Britain High Mexico Low Low France Medium Medium Tech. Low pragmatic Hyper v. High High Political Political Tech. High High Mixed ideological ideological pragmatic Other Comparative Research Designs "typology approach" pick cases as different "ideal types" of certain phenomena (spectrum of cases, 2 X 2 table) and trace out the implications of these differences take a theory and apply it to cases outside the theory for fit (theory affirming cases), or examine deviant cases, asking why they do not fit ...
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This note was uploaded on 09/22/2008 for the course SOC 5 taught by Professor Bloemraad during the Spring '07 term at University of California, Berkeley.

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